OUR MISSION: The Whitman County Association of REALTORS® provides tools and resources for REALTORS® to better serve their clients and community.
Photos courtesy of Mike Gordon & Kris Finch
Washington’s presidential primary election has been moved to Tuesday, March 10, one week after Super Tuesday on March 3. Although ballot packets arrive this Friday, Feb. 21, you may want to wait until Super Tuesday to verify your candidate is still in the running before voting, as some candidates usually drop out.
Contact the Whitman County auditor’s office for registration information, or if you haven’t received your ballot by Feb. 28.
Registered voters and those preregistered who will be 18 years old by the general election on Nov. 3 are eligible to vote in the primary. You can register to vote or update your voter information online through March 2. After March 2, you may still register or update your information in person at the Whitman County auditor’s office though Election Day on March 10.
Voters in Washington do not declare a party when registering to vote, but to participate in the Presidential Primary, you must mark one party box and sign the declarations on the return envelope.
Both the Democratic and Republican ballots will appear on a single (consolidated) ballot. Unlike other elections, you may only vote for one printed candidate on the entire ballot page.
For your vote to count, the candidate you mark on the ballot must match the political party declaration (box) you mark on the return envelope. If you vote both sides of the ballot, or the opposite side of the ballot, your vote will not count.
If mailing your ballot, please mail by March 7 to ensure it’s postmarked by March 10.
If voting after March 7, your best bet is to put your ballot in your local ballot box. You can find a list of ballot box locations on the Whitman County auditor’s website.
If you’re notified that your ballot was rejected because you forgot to sign it, you can fix that by contacting the auditor’s office. You will need to work quickly because the time for certifying the primary is short.
For more information on the presidential primary please visit the Secretary of State website.
SEATTLE – The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded more than $2.7 billion to public housing authorities (PHA) in all 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The funding will allow agencies to make needed capital improvements to their properties.
The Alaska Housing Finance Corporation was awarded $3,035,482 in HUD capital funds while 9 housing authorities in Idaho were awarded $1,618,480, 13 housing authorities in Oregon were awarded $9,324,005 and 23 housing authorities in Washington state were awarded $30,201,530. View all local grants announced.
The grants are provided through HUD’s Capital Fund Program, which offers annual funding to approximately 2,900 public housing authorities to build, repair, renovate, and/or modernize the public housing in their communities. Housing authorities use the funding to complete large-scale improvements such as replacing roofs or making energy-efficient upgrades to replace old plumbing and electrical systems.
To help provide residents with decent, safe and sanitary housing and respond to the growing demand for affordable rental housing, HUD uses the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD), a comprehensive strategy that complements the Capital Fund Program. RAD offers a long-term solution to preserve and enhance the country’s affordable housing stock, including leveraging public and private funding to make critically needed improvements.
For more than 75 years, the federal government has been investing billions of dollars in developing and maintaining public housing, including providing critical support through the Capital Fund grants announced.
In 2011, HUD released Capital Needs in the Public Housing Program, a third-party independent study that estimated the capital needs in the public housing stock in the U.S. The study found the nation’s then-1.1 million public housing units were facing an estimated $25.6 billion.
Since Congress authorized the RAD demonstration in November of 2011, early results show it is generating significant additional capital for distressed public housing. As a result, 130,000 public housing units have converted to a more sustainable Section 8 financing platform, all without any additional costs to taxpayers. Public housing authorities and their partners have generated over $8.6 billion to preserve or replace distressed units and support local jobs in their communities – all without additional federal resources.
MLS agents have already had free access to Homesnap Pro as an included subscription benefit, but Homesnap just released the biggest update in its history, making it the only real estate search app you — and your clients — will need.
Homesnap has been conducting extensive research for the past three years on what technology real estate agents actually want, and now it’s providing it all in one easy-to-use app that’s deeply integrated with our MLS.
With the All-New Homesnap Pro, agents can now:
An essential part of being a listing agent is finding seller leads, and now that’s easier than ever with new property heatmaps and filters for your priority zips. Use the app’s new Likelihood to List scores to identify the homes most likely to list in the next 12 months to improve your prospecting with Homesnap’s predictive algorithms. You also have free access to unlimited homeowner contact information, so you can instantly reach out to homeowners by phone or email.
With the new Likelihood to List scores, you can identify properties that match your buyers’ search criteria but aren’t on the market yet. Pair their existing search filters with homes that are Most Likely to List soon, and you can expand their home search in a snap. Knowing the homeowner contact info from Homesnap, you can strike up a conversation with the homeowner and see if they’d be interested in selling.
Make the homebuying process a harmonic one. Invite your buyers onto Homesnap so you can exchange in-app messages and get alerts when they favorite properties. Homesnap is like a safe haven for your clients, because they can get the same search experience as sites like Zillow and Redfin, without seeing any third-party advertising. Instead, they just get a seamless search experience powered directly by our MLS.
With these advanced filters, agents and their clients will soon be able to search for the ideal home with unmatched precision. Say your client wants an apartment with a parking space and an outdoor pool, and is a 15-minute commute from her job. With the All-New Homesnap Pro, you can compound these stipulations into one search to find your client the perfect home.
If you don’t have the Homesnap app yet, download it in the App Store and Google Play Store. Or, click here to check out their website.
WASHINGTON – President Trump today announced the release of the Administration’s Fiscal Year 2021 budget, “A Budget for America’s Future.” The FY21 budget seeks to provide the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) with $47.9 billion in funding to assist the fight to end homelessness, boost the promotion of healthy homes, and help America’s low-income families pay rent.
“The President’s budget proposal provides HUD with the resources to serve America’s most vulnerable populations in an efficient and compassionate manner,” said Secretary Carson. “We must remember, compassion is not always how many people we can get on a government program, but rather how many people we can help graduate out of a program and into financial independence. The road to self-sufficiency is one that is sure to improve the lives of all Americans.”
The FY21 Budget continues a commitment to fiscal responsibility, targeting lower value HUD programs for elimination or reduction, while seeking stable or increased funding into the highest impact programs that provide housing and support for vulnerable populations, including:
$2.8 Billion to Assist the Fight to End Homelessness
To help communities across the nation end homelessness, the President has budgeted $2.8 billion. HUD will continue working with local and state governments to compassionately house their most vulnerable populations through grant funds for emergency shelters, rapid re-housing, and transitional and permanent supportive housing—all while providing people with key services to help them regain their independence.
Record $425 Million to Boost Healthy Homes
HUD remains committed to providing families with safe and healthy housing nationwide in FY2021. Recognizing that housing conditions directly affect the health of residents, the President is requesting $425 million to mitigate health and safety hazards through lead remediation, carbon monoxide detectors, and healthy home grants. This is a $90 million increase over the enacted level for 2020.
Providing $41.3 billion to Help Americans Pay Rent
Currently, more than 4.6 million low-income families pay their rent with federal support, and more than half a million people are living on our nation’s streets. The President’s Budget funds the Department’s critical work to help our most vulnerable citizens secure housing so they can begin creating a better life for themselves. With $41.3 billion requested, the Budget supports the same number of rental-assisted households as were served last year while re-proposing a bold set of reforms to ensure the programs are sustainable for the future.
$190 Million to Pave the Path to Self-Sufficiency
The budget proposes $190 million that will directly support key initiatives like the Department’s Family Self-Sufficiency Program, which has more than 70,000 active participant households and 5,409 graduates who no longer require temporary assistance, and more than half graduate with an average savings of $6,700. HUD’s Jobs-Plus Program is geared toward increasing employment opportunities and earnings of public housing residents through a three-pronged approach of employment services, rent-based work incentives, and community support.
Through Jobs-Plus, nearly 1,500 individuals have been continuously employed for at least 180 days after placement, and residents have saved over $21.3 million in rent payments.
Supporting Housing Finance Reform
In FY2021, the Department reintroduced its plan for reforming the nation’s housing finance system. The plan ensures the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and Government National Mortgage Association (GNMA or Ginnie Mae) will continue to perform their important missions effectively, responsibly, and sustainably for many years to come.
Continuing to Build and Preserve Housing Supply
The 2021 President’s Budget requests $100 million for the Office of Housing’s Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program. RAD is a powerful tool that gives public housing authorities (PHAs) the resources needed to preserve and improve public housing properties and address the nationwide backlog of deferred maintenance. Transitioning Public Housing units to a more sustainable platform is one of HUD’s four Agency Priority Goals.
Protecting Taxpayer Dollars
HUD has established an Agency-Wide Integrity Task Force, that consists of the heads of HUD’s program offices. HUD will strive to eliminate fraud, waste, and abuse of taxpayers’ dollars as part of this strategic goal. In addition, the Department has developed and is implementing a five-year Financial Transformation Plan to protect taxpayers and support accountability, data, and transparency.
Congratulations WCAR for your four statewide RPAC awards in our association division (0-99)—Most $100 and Over Investments by Association Size, Highest RPAC Participation, Most Major Investors and Highest Percentage Over Goal!
Almost 500 REALTORS® and Affiliates showed up for the WR Legislative Day event on January 22-23rd in Olympia—including several of our very own members! Thank you for taking the time to meet to discuss Washington REALTOR® legislative priorities, including the following:
It was a fantastic event and we look forward to bringing you more updates on legislation affecting our industry!
Click through to view more photos from the event!