By Charlotte Reed
“Real estate is my business—my only business.”
January 30, 2012 (San Diego’s East County) – This week, we have big news on major regulatory changes for California’s real estate industry, good news about our local real estate market, and a warning about a real estate-related scam:
- C.A.R. defends DRE budget reserves
- Perception of better days ahead
- If it sounds too good to be true...
C.A.R. Defends Reserves
In his proposed budget sent to the legislature this month, Governor Brown has included big changes in the regulatory agencies, which include the Department of Realtors. Under this proposed change the Department of Real Estate, the Office of Real Estate Appraisers and Mortgage loan originators not affiliated with a bank would be regulated by a new department of Business Oversight within the Department of Consumer Affairs. Below is a statement released on January 5, by the California Association of Realtors :
“C.A.R. has in the past had to defend the budget reserves of DRE against “raids” proposed in previous administration budgets, and will be equally vigorous in resisting any transfer of financial reserves from the DRE under this proposed budget. It remains to be seen if the new budget would have the effect of transferring the reserves from license fees paid by real estate licensees out of the DRE “special fund” and into the general fund of the state. The proposal is not yet specific as to the effect on the enforcement staff and capabilities of the DRE, however, concern has been raised that a “bureau” may not have the enforcement capabilities of a full “department”. The proposed budget is just that, a proposal, and has not yet been enacted by the legislature. C.A.R. Directors will consider the proposal at their winter meeting in Indian Wells later this month.”
Perception of better Days Ahead
It was a full house at the weekly meeting at the East County Board of Realtors and everyone appeared in good spirits and enthusiastic. There were 10 (the most allowed per week) new listings on the Rally and Ride schedule. After a relatively slow beginning, January has made a remarkable turn around. There were 42 new listings in El Cajon in the week from 1/20—1/27, and 25 in Lemon Grove, 19 in La Mesa, 13 in Spring Valley and 5 in Jamul in this same time period.
Scam of the Week
On January 25, the FBI reported a new (to me) scam perpetrated on time share owners here and across the country. The representative from “a time share resale company” calls or emails a time share owner promising a quick sale. They used a prepared urgent script designed to impart a sense of urgency, and many times implying that that there is a buyer waiting in the wings. The owner is told that he or she must pay upfront fees to cover listing, advertising fees and closing costs.
Once the credit card has been used for these fees, the sales company or its representatives are seldom heard from again, and if they do answer, they are evasive and non-responsive. To make matters worse, a second “company” then calls the duped owner and for a fee offers to recover the lost fee payment! Be wary of any company asking for up-front fees to sell or rent your time share. If you feel you have been a victim of a scam go to www.ic3.gov to report it.
Charlotte Reed is a realtor with Windemere SoCal Realty in La Mesa. She can be reached at CharlotteReed@cox.net or (619)997-7333. Her motto is “Real estate is my business…my only business.”