September 15, 2010
Volume 18, No.36
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Mandatory home energy audits halted

OREA has learned that the Ministry of Energy has decided not to proceed with plans to introduce mandatory home energy audits on real estate transactions.

OREA lobbied strongly against mandatory home energy audits, telling government that they represented bad public policy and would be unworkable in practice.

This decision represents a significant victory for OREA and is due in no small measure to the efforts of the Association’s volunteers, Member Board PAC Chairs and the 15,000 Ontario REALTORS® who responded to OREA’s Call-for-Action.

The Board’s Government Relations Committee actively participated in the fight against mandatory home energy audits by publicizing the Call-for-Action, writing to and meeting with local MPPs. In addition, Government Relations Chairman Linda McCallum made a presentation to the Standing Committee on General Government opposing mandatory audits in summer 2009.

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Mayoral Debate Cancelled

Earlier this month we advertised a mayoral debate that was to be co-sponsored by OREB and the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce. Unfortunately, due to scheduling difficulties with the major candidates, the debate has been cancelled. Members are encouraged to attend other debates during the campaign to ask the candidates questions related to your business as real estate professionals.

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iBox Survey (with a Prize!) Coming Soon

We advised members in June that the Board had hired an independent third-party firm, Piper and Company, to conduct focus groups and a survey to solicit members’ thoughts and opinions about electronic lockboxes. The Board’s agreement with Supra for the provision of electronic lockboxes (known as iBoxes) began on November 26, 2006 for a period of six years. The Directors want to ensure that due diligence is carried out long before the expiry date of the agreement with regard to any future plans for electronic lockboxes, and they also wish to offer members the opportunity to provide input.

The focus groups took place in July, with over 50 members participating. The survey will begin on September 16 and will remain open for members to complete online until September 30. All OREB members who have provided their email address to the Board will receive an email inviting them to complete the survey. This email will be sent by the Board in order to maintain the privacy of members’ email addresses; however, none of the Board staff or Directors will be able to view the answers you provide on the survey. Your responses will be viewable only by Piper and Company, who will collect and analyze the data and provide a written report to the Directors.

All survey participants will be automatically entered into a draw for a $500 gift card from Future Shop. You may complete the survey only once.

The results of the survey and focus groups will be of significant assistance to current and future Directors as they go forward with their deliberations. Members’ input is essential, so we encourage you to complete the survey. If you have questions please contact Carol Mallett at the Board Office.

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Maintaining the Integrity of the MLS® Database

Every month, members use the Report Data Error feature on MLXchange to report more than 100 data errors to the Board’s MLS® department staff.

For those of you not yet familiar with this feature of MLXchange, the “Report Data Error” button is available on the left hand side of the screen when viewing property details.

Members who report a data error to the Board will receive one of the following three replies:

1. When staff can deal with the error as reported:

Thank you for advising the Board of the error(s) or missing information on this listing.  Board staff will contact the listing salesperson and Senior Member or manager to request that the correction(s) be made in accordance with Board policies.  We will not be contacting you further on this matter.

2. When it is not a rules violation:

Thank you for your e-mail about this listing.  Based on our review of the listing and the MLS® rules, we are of the opinion that the listing is in compliance with the rules. Should you disagree, you may choose to discuss the issue with the listing salesperson or with your manager or Senior Member, or send a written complaint to the Board, to the attention of the Executive Vice President, for review by the Professional Standards Committee.  Include your name and contact information and details of your complaint. Please refer to the Rules and Regulations Governing Complaints in the Member’s Handbook for further information about the complaints process.

3. When the error reported involves missing or incorrect information that staff cannot verify:

Thank you for your e-mail about this listing.  You have identified issues with the listing that are beyond the scope of the Report Data Error feature.  Your options are to discuss the problems with the listing salesperson or discuss the issue with your Senior Member or manager or send a written complaint to the Board, to the attention of the Executive Vice President, for review by the Professional Standards Committee. Include your name and contact information and details of your complaint. Please refer to the Rules and Regulations Governing Complaints in the Member’s Handbook for further information about the complaints process.

The majority of the messages sent to the Board fit into category number one.  The most common errors reported are missing photos, absence of the sellers’ names, no symbol in the commission to selling office field, missing tax information, incorrect district/neighbourhood code and incorrect or missing roll numbers.  For commercial listings, a common error is missing or incorrect zoning information.  (Note: “commercial” is not sufficient in the zoning field.) 

The staff will send an e-mail to the listing salesperson, copying the manager or Senior Member, with a request that the correction be made.  Most members make the corrections immediately.  If they do not, the staff will report the matter to the Professional Standards committee which will initiate a complaint.

Questions about the Report Data Error process may be directed to Carol Mallett, Claire Parrott or Brandy Tennant at 613-225-2240.

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Change to “number acres/hectares” field on MLXchange

REALTOR.ca allows for listings to be searched by number of acres; however, OREB does not currently forward this information to CREA for use on REALTOR.ca because the data entry field on our data input form is labeled “number acres/hectares” and there is no way for us to tell which measurement was used. This week, the name of that data entry field will be changed to “number acres” in the LOT property class. We are asking members who have properties listed in that class to go into MLXchange and change any measurement they may have inputted in hectares to acres. One hectare is equal to 2.47 acres.

After this change is made to the field name, OREB will begin sending the data in those fields to CREA so that our listings will be searchable by number of acres.

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Questions for Mayoral candidates?

The Board’s Government Relations Committee plans to send out a questionnaire to all mayoral candidates in the upcoming municipal elections. If you have a question that you believe should be added to the questionnaire, please send it to Alison Larabie Chase at alisonlc@oreb.ca by Monday, September 20. Questions already included deal with taxation powers, urban boundary, municipal government reform and rapid transit.

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Display Keys are Leased

A reminder to members that Display Keys and their cradles are owned by the Board and are leased to members for their use. When a member first obtains his or her Display Key, he or she must sign a leasing agreement for his or her key and cradle. Members may choose from a cradle that connects to their analog phone line or one that connects to their home computer via USB. Each member receives a copy of their signed Leasing Agreement, which states that, in the event that their membership status becomes inactive for any reason (resignation, sick or maternity leave, etc.) the Display Key and cradle must be returned to the Board Office promptly. The Keys and cradles may not be sold or given to another member under any circumstances (though a member may return a Key and cradle on another member’s behalf).

The iBox units (blue boxes that hold keys) are sold to members outright, and are theirs to keep or sell as they wish. iBoxes purchased from the Board may only be sold to another Board member, however, as they are programmed for our Board only and will not work elsewhere.

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Niagara Association of REALTORS® joins Connect!

We are pleased to inform members that listing information from the Niagara Association of REALTORS® is now available via Connect, the system that was launched last year by the Ottawa, Toronto, Hamilton-Burlington and London-St. Thomas real estate boards. Connect offers members of participating boards the ability to search and view active listings and recent sales history of all other participating boards without the complexities of actual data exchange.

Several other Ontario boards are scheduled to join Connect in the next two months. Click here to view a document that explains how Connect works and contains detailed instructions for logging into the system.

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Course Cancellation

Please note that the Principles of Mortgage Financing course scheduled for September 20-29, 2010 in Ottawa has been cancelled due to low enrolment.

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Latest President’s Pen article: The Code of Ethics

A weekly President’s Pen article appears in some editions of the EMC community newspapers, under the byline of the current Board President. Click here to read the latest article, about the REALTOR® Code of Ethics.

To view the archived articles, click on the Newsletters, Guide & Useful Articles button on Ottawa’s REALTOR Link® home page. From the blue left-hand menu, click on Useful Articles, and you will see a list of the last ten articles. Click “more” to see older articles.

Members are welcome to reprint these articles in their own newsletters or other publications, as long as credit is given to the Board as follows: The President's Pen column was prepared by the Ottawa Real Estate Board and first appeared in the (date) issue of the EMC community newspapers. The date of publication appears in the file name of the article.

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Online Open House List Enhanced

Many members will know that the Board’s public web site includes a weekly Open House list where members can advertise their Open Houses to the public. We are happy to announce that the Open Houses list has been given an upgrade. People who view the Open Houses list can now select (using check boxes) and print only those Open Houses they are interested in visiting. Previously, interested people had to print the entire list. Check out this new option by clicking here.

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Tech Tips!


Every week in Membership News: handy technology tips to make your working lives a little easier as you interact with various websites and technologies! Here is this week’s tip:

Outlook: Tips for managing your e-mail using rulesBottom of Form

Are you overwhelmed by the number of e-mail messages in your Inbox? Instead of constantly organizing an ever-growing number of messages manually, use the Rules Wizard to help you automatically process and organize your messages for you. After you use the Rules Wizard to create a rule, Outlook applies it when messages arrive in your Inbox, or when you send a message. This can be a real time-saver.

What is a rule?

In Microsoft Outlook, a rule is a set of conditions, actions, and exceptions that processes and organizes messages automatically and that is triggered by an event.

Think of the relationship between the event, condition, action, and exception this way:
  • An event triggers the rule. For example, you can select Check messages when they arrive as the event.
  • A condition specifies the messages that the rule will apply to. Example, you can select sent only to me or where my name is in the Cc box as conditions. You can select one or many conditions. If you do not select any conditions, it’s the same as selecting all conditions.
  • An action specifies what should be done with qualifying messages. You can select one, many, or no actions. For example, you can select delete it if you do not want to read messages that have the word "jokes" in the Subject line.
  • An exception specifies which messages will not be affected by the rule. You can select, one, many, or no exceptions. A rule is not applied to a message if any one of the exceptions you specify is met. For example, you can delete all messages with the word "jokes" in the Subject line, except those from your cousin (whose jokes you like). 

What can I use rules for?

You can automatically:

  • Move messages to a particular folder based on who sent them. This is the most common method to organize your incoming messages. Examples like a Reading or Personal folder, or by topic like OREA, CREA or by job function like TO-DO, Done.
  • Move certain kinds of messages, such as Out of Office messages, to another folder. These can be scanned quickly and deleted later.
  • Delete messages in a conversation.
  • Flag messages from a particular person or set an alert when an email comes in.
  • Set up a notification, such as a message or a sound, when important messages arrive. Use this one to flag messages from your manager to popup a window.
  • Redirect a message to a person or to a distribution list. This is useful to automatically distribute an email you receive to another person or group (like a newsletter you want to share).
  • Ask the server to automatically reply to a certain type of message by using a message you've created.
  • Assign categories to messages you send based on the contents of the messages applying a color for easy viewing.
  • Delay delivery of messages by a specified amount of time.

HOW TO:

  • Open an email that you wish to apply a rule and click on Create Rule.
  • Enter your conditions. Example all messages from John Smith with CREA dataload notification in the subject will automatically be moved from Inbox to the CREA Dataload Notice subfolder.
  • Click Advanced Options to enter more specific criteria.

HOW TO:

  • Manage Rules & Alerts by clicking Tools> Rules and Alerts.
  • You can manage and edit all your existing rules here. Note: Keep rules current! Delete obsolete ones and tweak existing ones.

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New or Transferring Members

The Board is pleased to welcome the following new or transferring Active Members:

Sara Adam (sara@sezlik.com)
Employer: Allan Bain, Prudential Town Centre Realty Inc. #613-744-6697

Erik Anderson (eandersonrealestate@gmail.com)
Employer: Wayne Gordon, Sutton Group-Premier Realty (2008) Ltd. #613-744-5000

Annigje (Annie) Blaine (annie@urhomeforsale.ca)
Employer: Allan Bain, Prudential Town Centre Realty Inc. #613-258-1155

Shawna Boisonnault (shawna.boisonnault@kwottawa.ca)
Employer: Sunil (Sunny) Daljit, Keller Williams Ottawa Realty #613-236-5959

Jason Boone (jason@ottawaproperties.com)
Employer: Heather Skuce, Re/Max Metro-City Realty Limited #613-288-0090

Joanne Clemens (joanneclemens@rogers.com)
Employer: Wayne Gordon, Sutton Group-Premier Realty (2008) Ltd. #613-254-6580

Barclay Johnston (bfj40@hotmail.com)
Employer: Richard K. Keirans, Details Realty Inc. #613-686-6336

Tyler Knowles (tyler.knowles@kwottawa.ca)
Employer: Sunil (Sunny) Daljit, Keller Williams Ottawa Realty #613-236-5959

Suzanne Labonte (suzanne@homeinottawa.com)
Employer: Judy Faulkner, Faulkner Real Estate Ltd. #613-231-4663

Laura Lamar (lauralamar@kw.com)
Employer: Ken Dekker, Keller Williams Solid Rock Realty #613-733-3434

Micheal Ruspic (michealruspic@kw.com)
Employer: Ken Dekker, Keller Williams Solid Rock Realty #613-733-3434

David Vinette (dvinette@gmail.com)
Employer: Pierre de Varennes, Royal LePage Performance Realty #613-238-2801

John Vujanich (jovan@kwvip.ca)
Employer: Wendy Bell, Keller Williams VIP Realty #613-829-1818

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Resignations

Effective immediately, the following have resigned from the Board: (Names are published two weeks after receipt of the termination from Manager or Senior Member)

Karan Bhopal
Keller Williams VIP Realty

Jeff Charles
Coldwell Banker Rideau Heartland Realty Ltd.

Nicolas Delahousse
Exit Realty Matrix

Patrick Derrig, FRI
Coldwell Banker First Ottawa Realty

Anja Liddy
Royal LePage Performance Realty

Asalyn Meakin
Coldwell Banker Coburn Realty

Sally Midwinter
Royal LePage Performance Realty

Robert Milicevic
Royal LePage Performance Realty

Angela Ohlman
Royal LePage Team Realty

Susan Reid
Milestone Real Estate Inc.

Philippe Sarault
Re/Max Metro-City Realty Limited

Paula Scott
Coldwell Banker Sarazen Realty

Claudio Versace
Flat Fee Realty Inc.

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OREB Courses

Credits
Oct 8 Understanding Home Showcasing 3
Oct 14 Professional Standards Course 3
Nov 18 Advanced Negotiation 3
Nov 18 Master Negotiation 3
Nov 19 Think in Legal Terms - Stay Out of Trouble 3
Nov 19 Legal Concerns for Residential Rental Properties 3

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2010 OREA Courses to be Held at OREB

To register for these courses, call OREA @ 1-866-411-6732 or visit www.oreacollege.com

As OREA handles registration for these courses directly, the Board cannot guarantee that space is still available or that a class has not been cancelled due to low enrolment.

The Real Estate Transaction - Commercial 40 hour
September 27 - 29, October 4 - 6


Land, Structures & Real Estate Trading (formerly Course 2):
October 18 – 29, 2010


The Residential Real Estate Transaction – 40 HRS (formerly Course 3 Advanced):
November 22 – December 1, 2010


The Real Estate Transaction – General & The Residential Real Estate Transaction 80 HRS (formerly Course 3 Advanced):
November 1 - 18, 2010



MANDATORY COURSE

RECO Real Estate Update - Residential
October 1, 2010 December 3, 2010
November 5, 2010


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2010 OREA Courses Off Site

To register for these courses, call OREA @ 1-866-411-6732 or visit www.oreacollege.com

As OREA handles registration for these courses directly, the Board cannot guarantee that space is still available or that a class has not been cancelled due to low enrolment.


The Residential Real Estate Transaction 40 HOURS (formerly Course 3 Advanced):
October 18 – 23, 2010 – Best Western Barons Hotel, 3700 Richmond Road, Ottawa
October 25 – 30, 2010 – Kingston, Location TBA


The Commercial Real Estate Transaction –40 HOURS (formerly Course 3 Advanced Commercial):
November 1 - 6, 2010 – Best Western Barons Hotel, 3700 Richmond Road, Ottawa
November 15 – 20, 2010 – Kingston, Location TBA


Professional Real Estate Brokerage 60 Hour:
October 25 – November 4, 2010 – Best Western Macies Hotel, 1274 Carling Ave., Ottawa


Principles of Property Management (Elective):
October 18 – 23, 2010 – Best Western Macies Hotel, 1274 Carling Ave., Ottawa
November 8 – 13, 2010 – Kingston, Location TBA


Principles of Appraisal (Elective):
November 8 – 17, 2010 – Best Western Macies Hotel, 1274 Carling Ave., Ottawa


Real Estate Investment Analysis
November 29 – December 4, 2010 – Best Western Barons Hotel, 3700 Richmond Road, Ottawa


RECO Real Estate Update Residential
October 6, 2010 – Travelodge Hotel LaSalle, 2360 Princess St., Kingston
October 6, 2010 – Best Western Parkway Inn, 1515 Vincent Massey Dr., Cornwall
October 27, 2010 – Cornwall, Location TBA


RECO Real Estate Update Commercial
November 12, 2010 – Travelodge Hotel LaSalle, 2360 Princess St., Kingston

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Notice Board

September 16
Commercial Services Division Lunch and Learn

September 17
New Member Information Session

September 21
Technology Committee

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Recently Sent

REM

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Thought of the Week

“Honor is better than honors.” – Abraham Lincoln

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© Copyright 2010 – Ottawa Real Estate Board - All Rights Reserved
Information located on this site is from sources believed to be reliable but should not be relied upon without verification.
The Ottawa Real Estate Board assumes no responsibility for its accuracy.





Mandatory home energy audits halted
Mayoral Debate Cancelled
iBox Survey (with a Prize!) Coming Soon
Maintaining the Integrity of the MLS® Database
Change to “number acres/hectares” field on MLXchange
Questions for Mayoral candidates?
Display Keys are Leased
Niagara Association of REALTORS® joins Connect!
Course Cancellation
Latest President’s Pen article: The Code of Ethics
Online Open House List Enhanced
Tech Tips!
New or Transferring Members
Resignations
OREB Courses
2010 OREA Courses to be Held at OREB
2010 OREA Courses Off Site
Notice Board
Recently Sent
Thought of the Week