RISMedia's Real Estate Magazine

NOV 2018

Real Estate magazine is the industry's leading source for real estate news and information since 1980. Published monthly by RISMedia, Real Estate magazine offers timely and relevant real estate news to the industry's top brokers and agents.

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78 November 2018 RISMedia's REAL ESTATE Continuing Education Key to Broadening Your Knowledge Base NAR'S PSA CERTIFICATION ENHANCES THE SKILLS OF REAL ESTATE PROFESSIONALS ACROSS THE BOARD by Keith Loria T he National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) Pricing Strategy Advisor (PSA) certification was designed to enhance people's skills in creating CMAs, pricing prop- erties correctly, and better guiding clients through the misper- ceptions they often have about a home's true worth. The PSA certification combines a newly revised course, Pricing Strategies: Mastering the CMA, with webinars on Making Adjustments and Counseling Clients Using Mar - ket Stats for a well-rounded approach to pricing strategy. Maurice Taylor, principal broker with iRealty Arkansas and owner of Vivid Real Estate Learning Center, is a professional development committee member. A self- described "education junkie," Taylor tries to get at least one or two designations a year. "I had heard that the PSA was a good course that would broaden my knowledge of comparables and help me become more self-aware on analyses and how to get that data," he says. "I took the class last November and it taught me how to better challenge an appraisal, to hit the right value and properly compare properties, and that I'm pulling the right comparables." Additionally, the course taught him what to do if there's no comparable in a particular area, and how to use a comparable area to find the right price. "I'd been doing this for 18 years before I took the course, and I was pretty comfortable with CMAs already, but this class gave me more comfort and broadened the knowledge I already had," says Taylor. "It made me look at comps from a different perspective and gave me a better understanding of why you take certain things out and why you add certain things in." For that reason, Taylor believes it should be a required course for all real estate professionals. "In 2016, I was attending our Montana State REAL - TOR® Conference, and the PSA certification course was offered, so I immediately signed up," says Susan E. Smith, a broker with RE/MAX of Whitefish in Whitefish, Mont., who previously sat on (and was chair) of her local Northwest Montana Association of REALTORS® Profes - sional Development Committee. "Just this past month, my local association offered the PSA course to a sold- out crowd." The course gave her the tools and guidelines to help analyze properties with similar characteristics and nar - row down a price range, which has led to her being more confident in pricing listings and making adjustments. "My career prior to real estate was in accounting and finance. I'm good with numbers; however, I find CMAs one of the more difficult aspects of our job," says Smith, "particularly in Northwest Montana where there aren't a lot of large subdivisions with similar model homes. Our inventory varies from modest homes in town to large es - tates on acreage, ski resort properties, waterfront, va- cant land, etc. Comps can be difficult to find." She makes sure to explain to all clients what the PSA certification means, and how it is beneficial for them. "When I'm working with buyers or sellers, I have an opportunity to explain the PSA certification and how it benefits them in pricing their listing right or negotiating on behalf of a buyer," she says. Katie Eddy, manager/course developer for the Center for Specialized REALTOR® Education, recently worked with NAR's subject matter experts to update the course based on feedback from students. "We have a very hands-on approach to revising con - tent. There's a whole revision team that we assemble to provide the most informed, updated information to our REALTORS® and other course participants," she says. "Before revising the course, we took the course as a stu - dent, both online and in the classroom. We read through all of the student reviews from the last two years, since the last revision of the course in 2016. We spoke directly to students to explore more effective ways we could de -

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