Viewpoints

Crystal Hawkins Syska

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: Section 8 or No Section 8 is Not the Question

June 16, 2021

On April 12, 2019 the Lawful Source of Income Non-Discrimination Act of 2019 was signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Although that has been more than two years ago, it seems quite apparent that many in our industry have yet to wrap their minds around what it really means. Just the other day sitting…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: Ann Garti: A 40-Year Tutorial in Leadership

June 16, 2021

To say that June 30, 2021 is going to be a bittersweet day for not just me, but for all of the members of HGAR, is an understatement, as that is the day that Ann Garti formally retires from HGAR. Ann’s career spans 40 years of service for the Realtor organization, and during that time…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: June Legislative Update

June 1, 2021

The Westchester County co-op transparency bill has finally had a public hearing. The number of speakers who came out in support of the bill outnumbered the naysayers by a 3 to 1 margin. The arguments against the bill were ones we had heard many times before and easily disputed. Opponents said that the bill, if…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: Beware of the Endless Roller Coaster

May 19, 2021

As a kid I was not a big fan of roller coasters. They were scary and unpredictable, so they had no allure for me. As an adult I started to appreciate them a little more. The drama of the slow ascent that gradually reaches the peak and starts the downward plunge with increasing speed usually…

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Crystal Hawkins Syska

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: Lions, Tigers and Bears

May 12, 2021

“So how is the market?” I actually don’t quite know how to answer that question anymore. I am wondering if you feel the same way? The competitive offer situations, the New York flight, 30-minute wait times to get into open houses, what is the world coming too! What I also find emerging is the intensity…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: May Legislative Update

May 11, 2021

At the federal level Realtors have won a huge victory. The CDC moratorium on evictions, which has caused people to avoid paying rent, has been struck down. The decision does not affect the moratorium in New York State. This will still go through the appeals process, but for now it is the beginning of a…

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Jennifer Maher

PUTNAM POSTING: Deciphering the Region’s First Quarter Real Estate Stats: ‘Wild’

April 29, 2021

According to the Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors First Quarter 2021 Market Report, “Residential home sales in the lower Hudson Valley for the first quarter of 2021 were staggering, even to anyone regularly monitoring sales activity. The residential market is normally cyclical with seasonal low sales in the first quarter as sellers begin to prepare…

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Crystal Hawkins Syska

President's Corner: The Spring is Not Just About Showers and Flowers

April 14, 2021

April showers bring May flowers is a nursery rhyme many of us may know from our youth. But the month of April means even more than that for those of us in the real estate industry. For one, it means being in the throes of the spring market. This season is an intense one! Highest…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: April Legislative Update

April 12, 2021

It is April, which means it is the state budget deadline. The budget was already a few days late when it was passed by the state legislature on April 7th. Items that HGAR was opposing appear to have been taken out of the budget. Essentially, real estate did not take a hit in the budget.…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: A Year Like No Other

March 15, 2021

I’ve been listening to a lot of reflections about our lives one year ago this March and what has transpired since. It was a year ago this very week that the HGAR staff went virtual and I left my office in White Plains thinking life would likely return to normal in a month or two.…

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Crystal Hawkins Syska

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: Who is Covering your Six?

March 15, 2021

The best edge-of-your-seat thrillers have that moment when the main character walks into a situation that, as the observer, you clearly see they are stepping into danger. If you are like me, I am yelling at the screen, “You nut job, you are about to get killed! Can’t you see that!” You know what I…

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Jennifer Maher

PUTNAM POSTING: Responding to Differing Opinions

March 12, 2021

How does a small business in a small community handle Cancel Culture? As someone who expresses opinions freely on social and traditional media, I come face-to-face with these concerns as do many community leaders. Here’s a personal story that seems pertinent. The last week in August 2020, I tested positive for COVID-19 and spent two…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: American Rescue Plan Package Passes Congress

March 11, 2021

The American Rescue Plan, as it is known, has passed Congress. It is a necessary package with lots of provisions. The price tag is $1.9 trillion. The plan includes money for state and local governments, along with money for the MTA ($6.5 billion). The money for New York State and local government ($23.8 billion) is…

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Philip Weiden

LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS: Cuomo Targeting Enhanced STAR Deduction

March 3, 2021

The Enhanced STAR program for seniors (65+) is under attack again in the governor’s proposed budget. This could negatively impact seniors who qualify for the program. In Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposal he would move new homeowners aged 65 and over to a tax credit check instead of an upfront savings on their tax bill. This…

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Chris O'Callaghan

GUEST VIEWPOINT: What We Can Learn from Westchester’s Evolving Office Market

March 3, 2021

Famed American Bandstand host Dick Clark once clarified his multi-decade influence over the music industry. “I don’t set trends,” he offered, “I just find out what they are and exploit them.” Much the same can be said of Westchester County, where the area’s changing real estate landscape is more a reflection of emerging national and…

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Richard Haggerty

GATEWAY PERSPECTIVES: That’s Who We ‘R’

February 17, 2021

I begin this article with a confession. Until the most recent advertising campaign from the National Association of REALTORS®, the “That’s Who We R” campaign, I was not a big fan of the previous NAR public image campaigns. I thought Ty Burrell did an excellent job playing the fictional character Phil Dunphy on Modern Family.…

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Jennifer Maher

PUTNAM POSTING: Rethinking Regulations Could Spur Organic Growth in Putnam County

February 17, 2021

This devastating pandemic has resulted in so many lives lost, others negatively impacted, and businesses have taken a wallop. Landlords are struggling to fill spaces being left empty by businesses closing their doors. Each day yet another business announces that they are closing due to COVID-19. Life will go on despite the terrible heartbreak, physical…

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Crystal Hawkins Syska

PRESIDENT'S CORNER: I am Biased, Are You?

February 9, 2021

When I was dating my better half, we spent a lot of time at Gedney Park in Chappaqua with his three daughters, ages 12, 10 and 7 at the time. We loved getting nets and trying to catch tadpoles and water snakes and little lizards that frequent the pond, as well as racing up and…

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Real Estate In-Depth

Senate Majority Advances Housing Discrimination Legislative Package

February 8, 2021

ALBANY—The leadership of the State Senate Democratic Majority announced on Feb. 8 it will advance major legislation to continue addressing housing discrimination across New York State. The legislative package was created following two public hearings on housing discrimination that included 25 subpoenas. The package of bills is also in response to legislative suggestions outlined in…

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