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Congratulations to our All-Stars! Yesterday, Adam Watkins was awarded 2018 Realtor of the Year by the Hattiesburg Area Association of Realtors and DeLois Smith along with Judy Corts, Wesley Breland, Gwen James, and Don Nace were inducted as REALTORS Emeritus by the National Association of REALTORS for 40 years or more of service in the industry.

Fair Housing Makes U.S. Stronger

by Christy McLemore

2018 marks the 50-year anniversary of the passage of the Fair Housing Act of 1968. The National Association of Realtors has been celebrating this milestone all year long with the slogan, “Fair Housing Makes U.S. Stronger.”

The history of the fight for fair housing in the United States is a convoluted one, beginning in 1866 with the passage of the Civil Rights Act shortly after the conclusion of the Civil War, which declared that all United States citizens of every color or race would have the same rights to own, occupy, and transfer real estate. Of course, this was not the end of the fight, but merely the beginning, as a series of laws and policies to promote segregation were put in place, and subsequently struck down, for the next 102 years.

The assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. was the catalyst to prod Congress to pass the Fair Housing Act after two years of failed attempts, in April of 1968, a little more than a week after King’s murder. The Act prohibited discrimination concerning the sale, rental, and financing of housing based on race, religion, or national origin. Gender, handicap, and family status were later added as protected groups.

Upon signing the law, President Lyndon Johnson said, “I do not exaggerate when I say that the proudest moments of my Presidency have been times such as this when I have signed into law the promises of a century… It proclaims that fair housing for all--all human beings who live in this country--is now a part of the American way of life.”

The National Association of Realtors, to which all of The All-Star Team Realtors belong, is a strong advocate of fair housing practices. The NAR Code of Ethics Article 10 states, “REALTORS shall not deny nor be party to any plan or agreement to deny equal professional services to any person for reasons of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, national origin, sexual orientation, or gender identity.”

 The NAR believes that “Where people live has a direct impact on the quality of their health, education, and access to economic opportunities”: From the NAR website, abbreviated, and emphasis added:

  • Where someone lives affects both their physical and mental well-being. Fair housing has a role in fostering healthy people and neighborhoods.
  • Housing factors that affect education include housing quality, residential stability, affordability, and neighborhood location.  Communities with high concentrations of poverty and a history of disinvestment may have less access to the type of housing that can bring about positive change to local schools. Fair housing has a role in creating and expanding educational opportunities.
  • Neighborhoods are becoming more segregated economically. The number of poor people living in neighborhoods with concentrated poverty doubled from 3 million in 2000 to 6 million in recent years. The stability provided by affordable housing can help households secure and maintain employment, increase their savings, and take steps to become self-sufficient. Fair housing has a role in creating neighborhoods that are economically diverse.               

Your Realtors at The All-Star Team are proud to be at the forefront of those who are ensuring fair housing here in the Pine Belt, which leads to economic growth that is good for not only the real estate industry but the U.S. and local economies as a whole. All of us benefit when fair practices are the norm!

To learn more about the Fair Housing Act, how to get involved in promoting fair housing in your community, or to lodge a complaint, visit Hud.gov/fairhousing.

Time Flies When You're Having Fun!

by Adam Watkins

And just like that, our kiddos kissed their summer vacation good-bye and set out to start another school year!  It's hard to believe that Amelia and I have both of our children in school now!  Abigail is entering Fourth Grade at Petal Elementary, and Hannah will begin First Grade at Petal Primary.  They're both excited, but as parents, Amelia and I greet each new school year with a bittersweet feeling.  We know they enjoy their routines, but we really enjoy our summers.  Each year Amelia sits down with the girls to create a "Summer Fun To-do List."  (What can I say, we are a family of three first-borns and one achievement-oriented second-born; we like to check things off lists!)  This summer was no different, and the girls really look forward to creating their lists as each school year closes.  It gives us (Amelia especially), a way to focus on maximizing fun experiences with our kids throughout the summer.  It can be as simple as visiting the library, or as complicated as going to Disney World.  (Both were on their lists this Summer; and if you haven't visited Disney or it's been a while since you've been - boy, has it become complicated!)  Anyhow, our girls managed to check everything off their lists just in time to start the new school year on August 8th.  I guess that's what makes the close of summer break a little bittersweet to us; we cherish all that summer fun, and then its time to get back down to the business of school, and dance, and soccer.  Best wishes to all of our area families as they start this next school year. For some, it's preschool, high school, college, trade school, and graduate school; for others it's a new career or job.  Several of our team members have children and grandchildren in all of these stages of life, and it's always interesting for us to share in those experiences with our team members as well as our clients and friends.

One of our big memories this summer was our team's July 4th Celebration at Canebrake Clubhouse.  It was another fabulous event that celebrated many of our community's finest citizens, in particular, our Vietnam Veterans, as we commemorated the 45th Anniversary of the ending of that conflict.  By the looks on everyone's faces, a good time was had by all.  We enjoyed the Victory Belles from the National World War II Museum in New Orleans as well as plenty of food, fellowship, and ICE CREAM!  Be sure to like and check out more photos on our team's Facebook Page...just search for "The All-Star Team REALTORS," and like the page - feel free to tag yourself in a photo!

The market has been active throughout the summer, as we would expect.  Overall, the market is still lacking inventory in our median price ranges which has led to increased competition amongst buyers for those types of properties.  Still, tremendous opportunities remain in nearly every price category.  Much of our focus recently has been on identifying potential properties to sell, and we are anxious to help you or someone you care about place their property on the market.  Our Listing Manager, Christy McLemore, recently led in a small research project where we examined our efficiency rate in moving the homes we list on the market.  We felt strongly that we were outperforming our competitors, but it always helps to verify that to be sure.  The sales data provided by the Hattiesburg REALTORS MLS Service showed that The All-Star Team, REALTORS, was the MOST EFFECTIVE REAL ESTATE BROKERAGE in successfully selling its listed inventory over the past year - in fact we were nearly 50% MORE EFFECTIVE than other brokerages in the Greater Hattiesburg Area!  We also identified a total of 13 homes in the last 12 months that had been previously listed with other brokerages, and were successfully sold after listing with The All-Star Team, REALTORS.  Those homes spent and average of approximately 280 days on the market prior to listing with The All-Star Team, REALTORS, where we sold them in an average of 59 Days!!!  It was refreshing to see evidence of our commitment to creating effective selling strategies for our clients, and it underscores our commitment to fulfilling the mutual goal of clients who list with our team - to SUCCESSFULLY sell their properties!

So who do you know who is in need of a team that is seriously committed to helping them sell or purchase property?  We're always honored by your referrals and your willingness to call on us....again....and again!

Sayonara Summer '18, you've been a blast!

Adam & Team 

Displaying blog entries 1-3 of 3

Contact Information

The All-Star Team, REALTORS®
Bringing you home...again and again!
4 Willow Bend, Suite 2A
Hattiesburg MS 39402
601.545.3900
800.335.6477

The All-Star Team, REALTORS brings you over 200 years of accumulated experience along with the most innovative marketing strategies in the real estate industry. We specialize in the real estate properties located in Hattiesburg, Oak Grove, Petal, Sumrall, Purvis, Columbia, and the entire Pine Belt region. Put The All-Star Team, REALTORS® to work for you as you consider your next home sale or purchase. Experience the team approach to real estate and make us your REALTOR® for life! See how The All-Star Team, REALTORS® really is bringing the Pine Belt home again and again.