Helping home buyers with conventional, VA and FHA home loans throughout the State of Texas including, Houston, Dallas, Austin, El Paso, San Antonio, Beaumont, Orange, Port Arthur, Lubbock, Waco and Abilene for nearly 25 years
Darrel shares his journey in the Coast Guard, working his way up to rescue pilot to becoming an Entrepreneur, father, husband and author of two books.
Having been friends for nearly 15 years, Darrel was the perfect guest. Darrel has always expressed loyalty and friendship not to mention that Darrel seems to know how to fix anything.
Do Corvette Engines Fit Into the Body of a Ford 150?
During our friendship, I’ve watched Darrel labor over an old beat up F150 with the intent of installing a Corvette engine. I would question him regularly and say….”Hey!”, “Should a Corvette engine every be put into a F150!?” Darrel paid no mind and eventually was successful, but not without constant maintenance. LOL!
Darrel is so knowledgeable about his industry that I would have no problems referring him to a buyer or Realtor.
Darrel is Father and mentor. His son Derek who used to run marathons with my family is now mentoring to be an inspector just like is father.
If you need a realiable, knowlegdable and friendly inspector, reach Darrel at: Amvet Inpsections.
Thanks for tuning in. See you next week at 830 a.m. for MortgageMack Live – Monday Morning Commute
Mack: Hi, Mortgage Mack here. And I’m here again with Jo Ann Stevens, the National President of Women’s Council of Realtors. And we thought we’d get together and talk about specifically about the results of the recent tax reform bill and how some of the new regulations are going to impact homeowners both here and throughout the United States.
So, Jo Ann, tell me— Let’s maybe go into some specifics of what the new regulations look like.
Jo Ann: I’ll be happy to and Happy New Year to everybody. And guess what? We’re gonna have a new tax reform bill.
I do think in some instances the lobbying that Realtors did for some of the issues proved to be successful. I don’t think we got everything that we asked for, but we certainly got a number of concessions.
Mack: Let’s talk about mortgage interest deduction and what that looks like moving forward for the coming tax year.
Jo Ann: Okay. First, you have to realize that the standard deductions have just about doubled over what they were in the past. So, for a number of people, they probably will not itemize on their return.
Tax Reform for Homeowners – 2017 Tax Reform Bill increased Standard Deductions to $12,000 for Individuals and $24,000 for Joint Returns
Mack: So, unless you have itemized deductions of 24,000 or more for married filing jointly, it’s not gonna make sense to itemize. Is that what you’re saying?
Jo Ann: I’m saying that some people may not want to go to that trouble.
Mack: So, we talked about mortgage interest. So, let’s discuss what’s next, real estate taxes and how is the new reform bill going to impact real estate taxes. What are my limitations now?
Jo Ann: Well, $10,000 is all they’re going to allow for property taxes as we would call. That would be local and/or state.
Mack: We also talked about the capital gains. Yes, capital gains and— Tell us how that changed.
Jo Ann: Well, actually, it didn’t and I think this is one area where the realtors made an impact in that here the capital gains will still be in effect where it’s same as before. You have to live in a property 2 of the last 5 years. And they were considering 5 of the last 8 years, which would have really hurt our relocation people, our military people who move on a more frequent basis than that, but that is one area where I think our lobbying did help along with mortgage interest and property taxes. Those were all concessions that we received as a result of their realtor movement to get to our members of Congress. And if nothing else, this is the first step. Now, I don’t think this is the end result. I think it’s something that we will work toward refining. And I think that the members of Congress have been very good about listening to our reasoning and our rationale. I think they do honestly believe that homeownership is the backbone of our country. We don’t wanna become a country of renters.
Mack: So, in closing, is there anything else that maybe we didn’t cover that might have changed in the current tax reform bill that maybe you could share with us?
National Association of Realtors Lobby Helps to Preserve Interest Deduction for Second Homes
Jo Ann: Two things. We were able to preserve interest deduction on second homes because that was something that was about to be totally done away with. We also have seen a change that home equity interest will no longer be deductible. So, that is [0:04:10][Inaudible] unless— Now, I say that— I understand that if the funds are being used to significantly improve the property, then it’s a different situation.
Mack: Anything else that you feel like moving forward from here? Maybe share with this the timing associated with this new bill and when people can, I guess, begin to see the changes on their tax returns.
Jo Ann: Well, it will take effect— Well, it’s already taken effect January 1st. However, you really won’t see the difference in filing now for April. There you won’t see any changes. The changes will come this time next year when we’re preparing for the 2018 return.
Mack: So, in summary, it looks like we’ve tried to or we’ve simplified the tax return. We’ve put some caps on some of the itemized deductions specific to real estate taxes, not necessarily to mortgage interest deductions. You can still take the mortgage interest deductions for whatever the amount you’ve paid if you decide to— Is there a cap on that? Do you recall what the cap is?
Jo Ann: I have to look at that and refresh my memory, but I do believe there is a cap.
Mack: I’ll look also too. I will just put a link.
Jo Ann: I do believe that what it is, if you purchased the property after December 15 of 17, 750,000 loan amount was the max. Anybody prior to that, they would be grandfathered in and they could deduct up to the million dollars.
Mack: In closing, anything else you might like to add?
Jo Ann: Just that 2018 has already started off as a year of change and I think it’s very early. So, there’s more to come.
**The final bill repealed deductions for interest paid on equity debt through 12/31/2025. Interest is still deductible on home equity loans or second mortgages if the proceeds are used to substantially improve the residence.
***As of this publication mortgage insurance is not deductible in 2017, but a Bill has been introduced in the House to make mortgage insurance permanently deductible: H.R. 109
Mack: Hi. Mortgage Mack here and I’m here with Jo Ann Stevens, the National President of WCR and a very longtime friend of mine.
Mack: What other items do you feel like are gonna be important to you as President moving forward in 2018? Can you maybe identify those priorities and kind of share ‘em with us?
JoAnn: Yeah. First thing, 2018, there’s just so much going on this particular year. We, within the Women’s Council of Realtors, have recently kind of redone our network model on the local level. So, 2018 is the first year that it will be mandatory for all networks within the country to be operating under the new model. We introduced it. We had a transitional year and in 2018 it becomes mandatory. So, we’ll be making sure that everybody understands. We’ve done extensive training on it, but we will be monitoring that around the country to make sure everybody is understanding and in conformance.
Why become a WCR Member in 2018 – WCR Supports Fair Housing
Also, 2018 is the commemoration of the 50 years of fair housing. Yeah. And so, 2018 is 80 years our anniversary for Women’s Council of Realtors. So, we’re 80 years old. Fair housing is 50 years old. And we will be very much involved in some of the things that will be going on to commemorate the Fair Housing Act. We’re working with a multicultural committee, if you will, through NAR. And what people don’t realize is that women were not allowed to practice real estate in the early years and then they were not allowed to be members of associations. Some as late as the 1950’s and the 1960’s. There was gender discrimination and fair housing was responsible for correcting that as well. Current NAR membership is predominantly female.
Mack: And you know, diversification in housing is just really important. We live in Sugar Land, Texas, one of the most diverse communities in the entire world. And so, specific to your model for WCR, could you maybe share with us what that looks like for the different chapters and then maybe with me why a young real estate agent who’s getting licensed— And again, it’s not gender specific, is it? Fort Bend County is the most diverse community in America.
Mack: So, the ultimate goal for WCR specific to the individual member and service to the individual member is what?
Why become a WCR Member in 2018 – Make More Money
Jo Ann: We have outstanding educational opportunities, cutting edge technology, but there a lot of sources now for education. We have a referral network. Statistics show that our members make about 35,000 to 45,000 more per year than the average NAR member.
Why become a WCR Member in 2018 – Bigger and Better
Mack: Share with me now maybe the model for the individual chapters, and what changes you’ve made in that particular area, and how you feel like it will benefit its members nationwide.
JoAnn: Okay. What we’ve done is try to streamline the governance piece. So, as far as the officers involved and what their responsibilities are, we tried to streamline that. Instead of having 8 meetings a year, we’re really only requiring 4, but we’re asking them to do what we call industry events, which means they’re bigger, they’re probably a higher caliber, a named speaker or somebody in the area that will draw a bigger crowd. And we want them. So, it’s really quality over quantity.
Mack: Will you say the goal would be to offer by drawing bigger crowds maybe increase membership?
JoAnn: Yes. I mean, I definitely think that is— Well, we’ve tested this model in California and that’s exactly what has happened. We’ve also converted our affiliate members to strategic partners. So, the actual members of the organization are all Realtor members and we have some national affiliates but then everyone else will be a strategic partner.
And we, again, think that the strategic partner continue to be involved and work within the organization. It’s just in a different capacity.
Mack: What would you say to anybody out there right now that maybe isn’t a member to motivate them maybe to become one?
Jo Ann: Well, I would invite anyone that has the least interest or wants to know what Women’s Council is all about because we try to train and educate leaders within the real estate industry.
Mack: Thank you for your time today.
Jo Ann: Pleasure. I mean, man you’ve always taken great care of us. So, we thank you.
Mack: Hi, Mortgage Mack here and I’m here with Jo Ann Stevens, the National President of of WCR and a very longtime friend of mine.
Where are you from? Maybe a little bit about your family. And then what we’ll do is we’ll talk about WCR and your trip to Washington and what that meant to you and to the members of Women’s Council of Realtors. Where are you from? Let’s start with that.
WCR President and Tax Reform – Jo Ann has Dedicated Her Life to Service to WCR and NAR
Jo Ann: I’ve been in the business for over 30 years. I actually live in Richmond, Texas. My office is based out of Sugar Land. And I have worked this Houston market for, like I said, over 30 years. There’s just almost not a part of Houston I haven’t listed or sold in that period.
Mack: Long as I’ve known you, you’ve always been involved in volunteerism in our industry and WCR is one of those areas of volunteerism. You’ve done a lot of charity work as well. I think you recently had— were given, what, a U.S. flag. A flag was flown at the capitol on your behalf and I think— Could you tell us about your day? City of Sugar Land had joined Stevens Day. What day was that?
Jo Ann: Well, it’s actually Fort Bend County Day. Yes, it was Fort Bend County. And it was the day that I was actually installed as the national president for Women’s Council. So, it was November the 4th. And so, they flew the flag in Washington, D.C. on that day in my honor. You know, when I was installed as the state president, they had a Fort Bend County Day. They had Jo Ann Stevens Day in Fort Bend County, but that was in 1996.
Mack: So, you’ve been involved in WCR for the better part of what?
Jo Ann: 30 years. You know, I was licensed in 1978 and I joined Women’s Council in 1986. And that was actually when we founded a network out here in Fort Bend County.
Your President Goes to Washington to Lobby Home Owners
Mack: So you recently you were in Washington DC?
Jo Ann: I service what we call a Federal Political Coordinator for Pete Olson send who is a member of the House of Representative. NAR which is National Association of Realtors asked certain people to fly and to Washington DC to meet with their Members of Congress over this tax plan as most people have seen in the news The House actually passed their version of the tax reform and the Senate has now passed their version of the tax reform bill neither of which are very positive towards home ownership.
Mack: Can you go into detail about what aspects of this legislation is not advantageous to homeowners?
Jo Ann: Well the realtor community feels that tax reform is definitely needed and in streamlining tax reform what the Congress is doing away with that that would be something like our mortgage interest deduction that is something homeowners can deduct on their income tax report every year what they pay in the form of interest. There is also capital gains taxes that we pay on property and they’re considering lowering that amount of time you hold your property, so there’s just all kinds of different things in the bill that are really not very conducive to home ownership so the Realtors and the Mortgage Bankers Association actually have really been fighting this piece of legislation, so we flew into Washington DC and met with several Members of Congress, mine being Pete Olson, but Kevin Brady, who is out of The Woodlands is actually the Chairman of the House Ways and Means committee so probably the most interesting meeting we had was with cabin and Kevin who basically said to us, neither of these bills are going to get through in their present form. There’s going to be a lot of talk and negotiation back and forth before we have a final product. And what I found to be very encouraging as he said to the realtor community, “Tell us what you can live with.” “Tell us what you can’t live with.” “Where what are your priorities for this bill and we will certainly take that into consideration”, and so I’m hopeful he will do so. I think we all know that Paul Ryan is behind the bill and I think there are certain things that he will compromise on but I think there are other things he will not. Home ownership is the backbone of the American economy.
Mack: I appreciate your time today and thank you for inviting me into your home.
Jo Ann: You financed it!
Mack: I did yes I wish I would have been your mortgage banker for 25 years haven’t I.
Jo Ann: I think the last 3 houses that we purchased.
Mack: I think so and we go back to gosh I would think about 1994 is when we met.
Jo Ann: Somewhere in that. I’m trying to remember.
Mack: Yeah! My memory’s going just like you know the the hearing in the seeing is going as well so but. I really do I really do appreciate that and thank you for your time today. Thank you.