Viewpoints

Jennifer Maher

PUTNAM POSTING: Who Says You Can’t Shop Putnam?

December 2018

We gave this tired old saying a run for our money on “Small Business Saturday.” Thanks to American Express and their promotion of the event, our local press, including radio and TV seemed to give Small Business Saturday as much or more coverage than Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Reports from our local businesses all…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: Stop the Deed Verification Proposal

December 2018

Rockland County is proposing a $200 deed verification fee in order to better align the county tax maps to the deeds. HGAR strongly opposes imposition of this fee for several reasons. We understand the idea behind the proposal, but the remedy itself will not solve the problem. The county claims it needs the fee due…

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Philip Weiden

December Legislative Update: Proposed Increase to Residential Appraisal Threshold

December 2018

On Nov. 20, 2018, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (collectively "the agencies") released a proposed rule that would increase the current threshold for residential real estate transactions requiring an appraisal to $400,000. The current threshold is $250,000.…

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Leon Cameron, Esq.

BARRISTER'S BRIEFING: The Duties of New York’s Real Property Bureau

November 2018

The Real Property Bureau of the New York Attorney General’s Office provides legal assistance to state agencies and authorities in connection with the acquisition and disposition of real property. The office investigates titles, clears liens, prepares deeds and various closing documents and facilitates the closing of title. In addition to purchases and dispositions, the bureau…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: Don’t Take Data Accuracy for Granted

November 2018

Data may seem like a pretty mundane, “take it for granted” type of topic, but accurate data is not something we should ever take for granted. HGAR will soon be launching two major initiatives that will rely heavily on accurate data, and we are going to need your help for these initiatives to succeed. The…

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Barry Kramer

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: Staying Ahead of the Curve

November 2018

I just returned from the NAR Convention, which was held in Boston for the first time in 60 years. Boston is a city rich in history and a great backdrop to a conference looking to frame the future of real estate. When I attend these conferences, I think of them in terms of four opportunities:…

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Robert Withers

Guest Viewpoint: Why are Commercial Construction Loans Inherently Risky?

November 2018

Too often, developers can’t secure permanent financing upon a project’s completion. If it’s a condominium project will the condo project sell out? Then, there is construction gamble, as cost overruns, accidents, delays and other problems tend to occur on every job. Imagine, for example, a crane falling or dropping an expensive beam. Further, good labor…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: Proposed Rules Released for Opportunity Zones

November 2018

November Legislative Update: On Oct. 19th, the Treasury Department released its proposed rules for Qualified Opportunity Zones, a federal program created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed in December of 2017. The program incentivizes investment and development in distressed communities, designated as “Qualified Opportunity Zones” through tax benefits for investors. These benefits include…

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Jennifer Maher

PUTNAM POSTING: Accelerator Would be ‘Catalyst for Thoughtful Economic Development’

November 2018

Putnam County Economic Development President Jill Varricchio has been talking up a “Business Accelerator” program for Putnam County. She says “as a catalyst for thoughtful economic development and being familiar with the evolution of the Orange County Accelerator, I found an entry point to bring to Putnam County a similar model. I brought the idea…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: Co-op Bill Advances to the Full Legislature

October 2018

On Monday, Oct. 29th the Westchester County Board of Legislators finally held a public hearing on the co-op disclosure bill. Realtor members of the Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors spoke in favor of the compromise bill. The bill calls for a 15-day time period in which a board must notify an applicant they received the…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: Embracing Technology

October 2018

Technology seems to be on the tip of everyone’s tongue these days, with some in the industry exploring how new technologies can help grow their businesses to others who openly wonder if new technologies will put real estate agents out of business. From my perspective, the ultimate key is how we engage with and stay…

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Barry Kramer

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: NYSAR Fall Business Meeting Update

October 2018

The New York State Association of Realtors held its Fall Business Meetings earlier this month at Turning Stone Casino in Verona, NY. I was joined by nearly 30 representatives from HGAR, all who volunteered to spend a few days hearing updates and addressing issues that affect membership and the Association. On the first day of…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: Federal Legislative and Regulatory Update

October 2018

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act legislation, passed earlier this year, includes a 20% deduction from the net business income of sole proprietors and owners of S corporations, partnerships, and limited liability companies. The new deduction is intended to provide roughly the same tax rate cut the act provided to regular corporations. However, it is…

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Barry Kramer

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: Our Power is at the Ballot Box

September 2018

Now that the primaries are over, focus will shift to the general elections. If you are a Realtor and did not vote, or are not registered to vote, you still have time to vote in the General Election to be held on Nov. 6. Every Realtor should vote! We are pillars of our communities and…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: New Challenges, New Opportunities

September 2018

In February of this year we announced in the pages of Real Estate In-Depth that HGAR and HGMLS had executed a formal memo of understanding (MOU) with the Long Island Board of Realtors, Inc. (LIBOR) and its subsidiary, the Multiple Listing Service of Long Island, Inc., to create a regional MLS. As I said in my…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: Federal Legislative Update

September 2018

As expected, last week, 12 attorney generals filed suit against the Department of Labor challenging the Association Health Plan rule issued in June. The state AGs include: New York, Massachusetts, California, Delaware, Kentucky, Maryland, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington, plus Washington, D.C. The lawsuit challenges DOL’s redefinition of “employer” under the Employee Retirement…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: Summer Co-op Disclosure Bill Update

August 2018

The co-op bill continues to be on the agenda of the Westchester County Legislature. Currently the bill contains a 10-day time period in which a board must notify an applicant that they received the application. It also contains a 45-day period from date of receipt to the time they must notify the applicant whether that…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: Numbers Count

August 2018

Please excuse the bad pun, but numbers truly matter, especially numbers related to real estate market statistics. The Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors, Inc. and its wholly owned subsidiary, the Hudson Gateway Multiple Listing Service, Inc, released second quarter sales statistics last month, and for the most part the numbers were a continuation of the…

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Barry Kramer

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: Exciting Events on Tap This Fall

August 2018

As the dog days of summer come to an end it makes me think of the fall and winter schedule of events, chock full of worthwhile meetings and conventions. This fall I hope you’ll join me for a vast array of happenings, everything from our very own Member Appreciation Day to NAR’s National Conference. The…

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