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Tips for finding a Realtor when buying or selling a house – Visalia Times






Getting a home in shape to sell can be a daunting process, but Realtors from Aronov Realty, the 2016 Montgomery Advertiser Best of the Best winner in the real estate company category, have some tips to make it easier.

For most of us, a home is the single biggest purchase in our lives. The enormity of the financial transaction aside, finding the right home to fit our needs and wants is no easy undertaking.

Just as you wouldn’t buy a car, computer or camcorder with doing some research into various models and prices, you shouldn’t consider purchasing a home without some expert advice and guidance.

Though some people may think of using the services of a Realtor only when selling a home, a Realtor can be invaluable when buying a home as well.

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For instance, a Realtor can help you determine how many homes you can afford based on your financial situation, help you get prequalified for a loan, and even inform you about available financing options.

A Realtor also is an expert on the neighborhood and can provide detailed information about schools, transportation, local taxes and community characteristics.

Using a Realtor also means gaining access to homes listed in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS), an important marketing tool used by Realtors to inform other agents about available properties on the market.

That means a Realtor can give you information about a wide range of available homes from which to choose.

When it comes to finding out if you’re paying too much, a Realtor can serve as the liaison between you and the seller, bringing to the table negotiating expertise and knowledge about required disclosures and the housing market.

You’ll be pleased to know the Visalia based Tulare Association of Realtors recently merged with the Porterville based Orange Belt Board of Realtors and the first time in history all Realtors are now under one Association.

Truly the Tulare County Association of Realtors representing the entire county with multiple listing services that covers all listings in Tulare County to best serve residents throughout the area.

If you’re selling a home 

You probably know what working with a Realtor is an indispensable part of selling your home.

For one thing, your Realtor can list your property in the MLS, providing your home with incomparable exposure and ensuring you have as many Realtors as possible helping to find a buyer.

But that’s not all a Realtor does to market your home. She or he knows how to specifically target advertising or social media to reach buyers for your home.

The agents use all the marketing tools available to ensure your home is sold expediently.

Additionally, a Realtor conducts a variety of other marketing efforts on your behalf, from holding open houses and handling phone inquiries to show your home to prospective buyers.

What does a Realtor do for you besides find buyers? Plenty. A Realtor provides information on local market conditions to help you price your property realistically and fairly, and keeps you abreast of changes in the market which may affect your home.

And let’s face it: buying and selling a home means paperwork, lots of it. When it comes to closing escrow, a Realtor can be invaluable, leading you through the paper trail with a steady hand, and familiarizing you with escrow, insurance, property disclosures and inspection procedures, to name a few.

So where do you find a Realtor? 

Like finding any good professional in Tulare County, the best way to locate a Realtor is through recommendations from friends or those who have bought or sold homes recently.

Ask for references and check each thoroughly. It’s always best to interview two or three Realtors before you decide on one that fits your needs.

It’s important to find a professional who is a Realtor. Why? A Realtor is someone who, as a member of the local, state and national trade association, adheres to a strict Code of Ethics.

A nationwide survey by the National Association of Realtors showed 97 percent of respondents said their Realtor was doing an “excellent” or “very good” job.

If you’re thinking or buying or selling property in Visalia, Tulare or Porterville, this summer or fall now is a great time to call, text or email your favorite real estate firm.

Mike Allen is the Managing Broker/Owner of Century 21 Jordan-Link Company, a full service real estate firm celebrating their 41st year in business in 2017, with offices in Visalia, Tulare and Porterville. Mike can be reached at 733-9696 or

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Home sales fall as inventory of homes for sale dips to 20-year low

Normally among the hottest times of the year to buy or sell a house, July came up tepid in metropolitan Milwaukee.

The reason: Not enough homes on the market.

“The decrease in sales is not due to any weakness in the market. Rather, there simply aren’t enough homes for sale to meet demand,” Mike Ruzicka, president of Greater Milwaukee Association of Realtors, said Friday.

It’s a national issue as well as a local one.

The number of houses available to buy is at a 20-year low as the appeal of McMansions wanes and baby boomers grow increasingly reluctant to trade up or down from their current homes, according to a survey by

More than half of the survey respondents, 59%, said they aren’t planning to sell in the next year.  

Ruzicka said that while the four-county area is teeming with people who want to buy a house or condo, not enough homeowners are selling them. 

“The brokers I’ve talked to who have been around since the ’80s, they say, ‘I never remember anything quite like this,'” Ruzicka said.

“In the early 2000s there was a lot of bidding going on, but in that market if you lost a bid on one house you could go to another one right away and start bidding and you’d eventually get one. Now, if you bid on one and you don’t get it, you start the search all over again.” 

The short supply of homes for sale was reflected in July home sales in the four-county Milwaukee region. The number of sales that closed on existing homes decreased 5.2% from July of last year, a report from the Greater Milwaukee Association of Realtors shows.

Sales fell in all four counties: Milwaukee County sales were down 5.2%; Ozaukee, 6.3%; Washington, 14.8%; and Waukesha, 1.6%.

Through the first seven months of 2017, sales of existing homes still were running about 1% ahead of the same period in 2016.

Nationally, there was a 4.3-month supply of homes on the market in June — that’s the time it would take to run out of homes for sale if no new units were added — down from 4.6 months a year ago, according to the National Association of Realtors.

A normal inventory would last six months.

In the four-county Milwaukee area, the seasonally adjusted inventory level for July was 4.8 months, a drop from 5.8 months in July 2016.

Shorewest Realtor Beth Jaworski said houses priced right for their condition and location in metro Milwaukee are quickly drawing action amid the scarcity of properties for sale.

“As soon as you put up a listing, within 24 to 48 hours you should have at least one offer. A lot of times you have three to six,” she said.  

The crunch has driven up home prices. The SP CoreLogic Case-Shiller national home price index was up 5.6% in May from a year earlier, hitting an all-time high. Some markets are even frothier, with average prices up 13.3% in Seattle and 7.9% in Dallas. 

“The housing shortage forced many first-time homebuyers to consider smaller homes and condos as a way to literally get their foot in the door,” said Danielle Hale, chief economist for 

“Our survey data reveals that we may see more of these homes hitting the market in the next year, but whether these owners actually list will depend on whether they can find another home.”






Nebraska is the rated highest among states for housing affordability. Vermont offers a good employment landscape for under-35 home buyers.
Newslook, an online real estate listing site operated by News Corp., conducted the survey of 1,054 randomly selected homeowners across the U.S. between July 6 and 13. Some findings:

Baby boomers aren’t moving: A vast majority of those who are at or near retirement age like where they are. Eighty-five percent of baby boomers said they have no plans to sell their home in the next year, the study said.

Home ownership among baby boomers is at 78%, or about 33 million properties. That’s nearly twice as high as millennials. Older age groups have historically moved less frequently than younger home buyers, and the trend continues.

But the market dynamics have shifted because there are more people in the older age groups than in past years. People age 55-74 made up 21% of the population in 2015, compared with 16% in 1985.

Happy with their homes: When those who are reluctant to sell were asked why they plan to remain, 72% said their current home meets their family’s needs. Thirteen percent cited financial security concerns, and 12% noted the need to make some home improvements.

The Greater Milwaukee Association Realtors conducted its own survey in May and found some were holding off on listing because of concerns about potential policy changes in Washington, D.C., on things like the mortgage interest deduction, taxes and health care. Others had recently remodeled their home, and some were holding out for higher prices.

USA TODAY reporters Roger Yu and Paul Davidson contributed to this report.




Majority of Americans see homeownership as good investment; affordability woes remain

Eighty-four percent of Americans believe that purchasing a home is a good financial decision, the highest number in 10 years. Yet six in 10 said that they are concerned about affordability and the rising cost of buying a home or renting in their area. This is according to NAR’s 2017 National Housing Pulse Survey, which measures consumers’ attitudes and concerns about housing issues in the nation’s 25 largest metropolitan statistical areas.

This survey makes it clear that most American’s still believe in homeownership and aspire to own a home of their own. Building equity, wanting a stable and safe environment, and having the freedom to choose their neighborhood remain the top reasons to own a home. Yet, Americans consider the lack of affordability as a big obstacle to ownership.

Concerns over housing affordability show clear demographic divides, especially among unmarried and non-white Americans. More than 50 percent of unmarried and non-white Americans view the lack of available affordable housing as a big problem, compared to only four in ten of married and white Americans.

Nationally, 44 percent of respondents categorized the lack of available affordable housing as a very big or big problem. In the top 25 densest markets, more than half see the lack of affordable housing as a big problem, an increase of 11 percentage points since 2015. Nationally, lower income Americans, renters and young women most acutely feel the housing pinch. There is also greater concern about affordable housing among the working class (65 percent) than for public servants such as teachers, firefighters or police (55 percent).

The survey found that over half of respondents strongly agree that homeownership helps build safe and secure neighborhoods and provides a stable and safe environment for children and family members.

People In Business: Laura Herring of REALTOR(r) Association of Pioneer Valley

SPRINGFIELD – Laura Herring, Director of Operations of the REALTOR(r) Association of Pioneer Valley has successfully completed the e-PROO Certification Program and has been awarded the e-PRO(r) Certification, the official technology certification program offered by the National Association of Realtors(r).

Laura Herring joins more than 30,000 real estate professionals and association staff specialists who have earned NAR’s e-PRO(r) certification and dedicated their time and effort towards learning how to use the latest social media technologies to create an online presence and reach today’s hyper-connected consumers.

Housing stock for sale nationwide slumps to 20-year low:


A new survey by reveals that residential housing inventory for sale has hit a 20-year low.

Baby boomers, content with their homes, don’t seem to be putting their houses on the market anytime soon, USA Today reported.’s survey showed that 85 percent of baby boomers said they had no plans to trade homes in the next year. The survey gathered data from 1,054 homeowners throughout the country between July 6 and July 13. Overall, 59 percent of those surveyed said they had no plans to sell their homes.

That reluctance has contributed to the inventory slump. The National Association of Realtors reported a 4.3 month supply of homes in the United States in June. That compares to a 4.6 month supply in June 2016. Six months is considered a normal inventory, according to USA Today.

“The housing shortage forced many first-time homebuyers to consider smaller homes and condos as a way to literally get their foot in the door,” Chief Economist Danielle Hale told the newspaper. “Our survey data reveals that we may see more of these homes hitting the market in the next year, but whether these owners actually list will depend on whether they can find another home.”

New inventory is also unlikely to emerge. Earlier this week, the U.S. labor department announced that construction job openings had increased from 163,000 in May of this year to 225,000 in June. The labor shortage will likely make it harder for developers to find workers to build new housing. [USA Today]   Grace Guarnieri

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Local Realtor Jinet Ventura Earns Senior Real Estate Specialist Designation

Union, NJ – Buying or selling a home is hard enough.  But if you’re a senior, your needs and goals can be quite unique.

Local realtor Jinet Ventura, with Century 21 POGO Realtors, has earned the nationally recognized Seniors Real Estate Specialist® designation from the Seniors Real Estate Specialist Council of the National Association of Realtors®.

“Working with seniors to meet their housing needs requires an expert understanding of their lifestyle and financial needs, and the SRES® designation means that a Realtor® has that understanding,” said Jinet. “Whether they are buying, selling relocating, or refinancing, seniors can be confident that a Realtor® designated SRES® will be able to help them every step of the way.”

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Jinet Ventura joins more than 15,000 real estate professionals in North America who have earned the SRES® designation.  All were required to successfully complete a comprehensive course in understanding the needs, considerations, and goals of real estate buyers and sellers aged 55 and older.

SRES® Council, founded in 2007, is the world’s largest association of real estate professionals focusing specifically on representing senior clients in real estate transactions. There are more than 15,000 active members of the organization world-wide. 

The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing more than 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

For more information, visit

David Greenup, Pontchartrain Park salesman, dies at 91

David McKinley Greenup, who helped hundreds of middle-class African Americans buy their own houses in Pontchartrain Park in post-World War II New Orleans, died July 30 at the Southeast Louisiana War Veterans Home in Reserve. He was 91.

Pontchartrain Park, which is part of Gentilly, was designed by white philanthropists to provide suburban-style housing to black New Orleanians in the 1950 and 1960s, when segregation was still the rule. Among the people who have lived there are former mayors Dutch and Marc Morial, the musician Terrence Blanchard, the actor Wendell Pierce and Lisa Jackson, an Environmental Protection Agency administrator in the Obama administration.

Mr. Greenup, who had already tried his hand at waiting tables and working in the post office, applied in 1954 to be Pontchartrain Park Homes’ sales supervisor. He was hired, and, his family said, found his vocation as a man who enjoyed showing houses and arranging financing for families to make those all-important purchases.

He liked the field so much that he formed D.M. Greenup Sons Inc. He kept selling property until he retired in 2010.

Mr. Greenup was a member of the National Association of Real Estate Brokers, an organization of minority-owned real estate firms, and he helped organize its New Orleans chapter. He also joined the National Association of Realtors and the organization’s local board.

A Baton Rouge native, Mr. Greenup enlisted in the Army during World War II and served in the military police and was on a boxing team. After being honorably discharged as a private in 1944, he moved to New Orleans, where he graduated from McDonogh No. 35 High School.

In addition to receiving a diploma there, Mr. Greenup met Juanita Alma Young, whom he would marry in 1948. She died last year.

Mr. Greenup was a member of Union Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, where he served as a trustee.

Survivors include three sons, Rodney, Lidell and Rory Greenup, all of New Orleans; a sister, Dr. Virgie Hopkins of Atlanta; eight grandchildren; and 10 great-grandchildren.

A funeral will be held Saturday (Aug. 12) at 11 a.m. at Union Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, 2321 Thalia St. Visitation will begin at 10 a.m. Burial will be in Lake Lawn Park Cemetery.

Gertrude Geddes Willis Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.