AWARDS AND ACCOLADES Weichert Real Estate Affiliates, Inc. (WREA) was ranked #2 by Entrepreneur magazine among all other competitors in the real estate category in its “Entrepreneur 2013 Franchise 500®” list, an annual ranking of America’s top franchise opportunities. The full list appears in the January 2013 issue of Entrepreneur, and reveals the impact of the newest franchise trends and the industries poised for growth. Currently, Weichert’s independently owned and operated affiliates serve more than 230 markets in 35 states
INDUSTRY NEWS The latest industry news offers an encouraging outlook for homebuyers and sellers:
• According to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, home prices rose in October for the ninth straight month.
• According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), sales of homes $1 million or more jumped 51 percent in November compared to one year earlier.
• In November, NAR’s Pending Home Sales Index rose to its highest level in two and a half years.
• For all of 2012, NAR projects its housing affordability index to be a record high.
WHAT’S NEW Congress heard the voice of the real estate industry! With the passing of the bill that averted the “fiscal cliff,” Congress made several concessions that are quite favorable toward the housing industry. Included in the bill are a number of real estate tax breaks and credits that most notably include a year-long extension of mortgage cancellation relief for homeowners and sellers, a deduction for mortgage insurance premiums for filers making below $110,000, as well as a 10 percent tax credit for energy improvements to existing homes. In addition, there are only minimal changes to the tax exclusion for gains on the sale of a principal residence. To read the full summary from the National Association of Realtors, click here.
CHARITABLE EFFORTS 34th Annual Toy Drive is a “Wrap” The Weichert Family of Companies successfully completed its 34th Annual Toy Drive, collecting nearly 16,000 new toys for disadvantaged children in time for the holiday season. In addition, more than $4,000 in monetary donations were given to numerous charities throughout the regions in which Weichert does business.
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