Sunday, February 18 , 2018, 10:18 am | A Few Clouds 58º

 
 
 
 
Advice

Reyne Stapelmann: Santa Barbara Association of Realtors President’s 2015 Wrap Up

It is truly hard to believe that the year has almost come to an end.

At the end of last year, the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors developed a new strategic plan, and our vision and mission statements were very important in this year’s direction.

Our vision states: “We are the trusted voice for real estate, a progressive resource for our community, and an advocate for our members and the public we serve.”

Our mission states: “We exist to provide tools, resources, and advocacy for our members’ success.”

With these in place, I had my marching orders, and that is what I did with the backing and help of my board of directors, able staff and my top notch committee chairs.

I am so grateful to all of them for their dedication, professionalism and community involvement.

We launched a new property search portal — sbaor.com — that improves the quality of the search for consumers.

It is very user-friendly and graphically improved. The site was built locally by Citrix, and we are the first website in the nation to incorporate their Voitrix contact buttons to help generate quality leads for our members.

Our 2015 golf tournament raised more than twice as much for our charity as the previous year. We generated $38,000 for Katie’s Fund. A new record high.

We were the lead sponsor for the Santa Barbara Housing Summit in April, and contributed $5,000 towards the event, which was reimbursed by a CAR® Grant.

Politically, we “upped our game” by making significant contributions to three SB candidates and, also, ran independent expenditure campaigns, which were funded by NAR®, in two of the district elections.

Our candidates won two of the three.

We are in full compliance with the NAR® Core Standards and CAR® Broker Compliance.

We attended more City Council meetings and Planning Commission meetings for all the cities and the counties in our area than at any time in recent memory. We had significant impacts in our communities.

We helped stop the city of Santa Barbara from taking away a homeowner’s right to install a pool.

We stopped the county from implementing proposed point-of-sale mandates in their Climate Action Plan.

We worked on the short-term vacation rental issue with the city of Goleta, where we helped create a common-sense ordinance, and have been vocal about this issue with the City Council of Santa Barbara, the City Council of Carpinteria, the Montecito Planning Commission, the Santa Barbara Planning Commission and the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors.

We have continued our efforts with the city of Santa Barbara regarding the notorious Zoning Information Reports, and stopped the city’s initial inadequate response to the Grand Jury. (The Grand Jury recommended that ZIR’s be voluntary)

We have continued to work to make ZIR’s voluntary and less of a problem for our members and homeowners, and have worked with city staff to develop an ordinance to allow minor zoning exceptions to be handled administratively when errors in prior ZIR’s are found.

Our education committee has hosted 11 education seminars to almost the capacity of the auditorium, each with a sponsored lunch.

We raised more Realtor® Action Fund dollars per capita than any other association in the state of California.

We had no professional standards cases this year.

The 2015 Unity Wine and Music Fest raised $6,690, which was three times that of last year, and this December, the Realtor® contribution to the Unity Shoppe was over $50,000.

On a national note, the Highway Trust Fund legislation passed without money from FHA home loans being used for anything but housing. Thank you to all who responded to the Realtor® Call To Action.

As you can see, it really was a great year, thanks to my board, committee chairs, committee members, staff and our fantastic association executive, Bob Hart.

I cannot stress enough how grateful I am for all of their hard work and dedication.

I have truly enjoyed my year as president, and without a doubt next year will be a great one as well, under the leadership of our 2016 President, Alec Bruice.

Wishing you all warmest holiday wishes and a prosperous New Year!

Reyne Stapelmann is a broker associate with Berkshire Hathaway Home Services, California Properties and the 2015 president of the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors. Contact her at [email protected] or 805.705.4353. The opinions expressed are her own.

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