CEO Report to Board
The New Year has arrived and we have been busy with planning the calendar of events for 2016. President Sara has I have already started to visit our member's offices and we plan on taking 2 days each month on these visits. Our first visits were in Tiffin and we plan on moving to Fremont next. We also are planning on visiting affiliate member's locations this year.
Our Christmas party at Camden Falls was a great success. The attendance was over 100 and we were able to see members who have not attended the party in the past. The party for this year is going to be held at the Port Clinton Yacht Club.
The OAR winter conference was held from January 16th – 19th at the Easton Hilton. We had 8 members in attendance along with me and our Attorney. This year I am serving as the Chairman of the OAR Association Executives committee. As chairman I requested that our attorney handle the education program at this meeting. D.J. prepared a class on professional standards and it was very well received. I have had many compliments on his program, and I thank him for his hard work on this class.
For 2016 the focus is still on NAR Core Standards and raising the professional standards of our members. At OAR there was a mock commission dispute, and a mock Real Estate Commission hearing with the entire Ohio Commission present. I am happy to report that our Professional Standards process is one of the best in the State.
The AE committee also had a presentation form REALTOR.com on agent rankings and reviews. All brokers need to make sure that their agents sign in to claim and update their profile data. This profile is a no cost to our members, and should be encouraged by all Brokers. This will be a focus of advertising for 2016 from REALTOR.com this year.
There is a task force working at OAR on reducing the amount of State meetings down to two. The idea is to do away with the January meeting and to add time to the April legislative meetings and the Convention.
In other news, we received word from IRS that our Foundation has been granted tax exempt status. The next step is for the Directors to establish a board to oversee this endeavor. This was a long process to get to this point and now we should be ready to take advantage of additional donation possibilities.
We finished 2015 with a profit before depreciation and we were just over our budgeted revenue. We have already collected receivables from our members from unpaid 2015 items, and we have reduced our overall past due accounts.
Many of our Committees have not yet met, and our annual planning workshop will be held after the Directors meeting on the 21st of January. The goal of this day is to set goals for the committees to work on this year.
David W Freitag RCE, CEO
We are pleased to announce that we are now exempt under IRC Section 501 (c) (3) as a public charity. Donors may now deduct contributions they make to this fund please make any donation checks payable to the Firelands Association of of REALTORS Charitable Foundation.
This new entity will be our charity arm and how we collect any funds for future charitable events. If making a donation to the Ottawa County Charitable Trust please make a memo note that you want the money to go towards that account.
This also meets one of Core Standards Requirements and puts up in full complaince with all federal and state laws.
Phillip Bolte, Bolte Real Estate
Justin Ewell, Ewell & Associates
April Hull, Bolte Real Estate
Karmen Lucas, Howard Hanna Real Estate
Steve Mack, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Stadtmiller Realty
Phillip Bolte, Broker and Co-Owner of Bolte Real Estate, was chosen the Firelands Association of REALTORS® REALTOR® of the Year at their annual meeting and awards night. This organization is a professional trade association that serves more than 500 licensed REALTORS® and affiliate members in Ottawa, Erie, Sandusky, Seneca and Huron counties, guiding them in the best possible real estate practices with a strict code of ethics. It is affiliated with the Ohio Association of Realtor and the National Association of Realtors, who work aggressively to provide members with tools and resources needed to succeed and be compliant in current real estate practices.
Phillip is a Past President of the Association and current member of its Board of Directors as well as a member of the Ohio Association of REALTORS® Board of Directors. Bolte Real Estate, one of North Central Ohio's largest brokerages has offices in Port Clinton, Catawba, Clyde and Fremont, and will be celebrating their 80th year of business next year.
Phillip was recently elected to another three(3) year term as a Board of Director for Firelands beginning January 1. 2016. Phillip and his wife Jenn have a two (2) year old daughter. Congratulations Phillip on your much deserved award.
The Firelands Association of REALTORS® RPAC committee on September 2nd sponsored a Lake Erie Island Cruise fund raising event in conjunction with a private reception for area elected State legislators. The day started with a private guided cruise tour of the Marblehead peninsula and the Islands. The ship then landed at Put-In-Bay and we held our Legislative Reception sponsored by Hartung Title, HMS Home Warranty and Tri Coast Title. The entire Ohio Association of REALTORS® leadership team and legislative staff supported and attended the event.
Ohio Associaiton of REALTORS® CEO Bob Fletcher introduced State Senator Randy Gardner, who gave a brief legislative update of issues that he has been working on for the benefit of our members. He then opened the floor up for questions from our members.
At the conclusion of the reception, a guided tour of South Bass Island was provided to the attendees. Ohio Association of REALTORS® District Vice-President Len Partin needs special thanks for his hard work on coordinating the details of this successful RPAC fund raising experience. The RPAC committee wants to thank all investors who participated in this cruise. The RPAC committee is making plans for 2016 to expand and enhance this event.