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The Silicon Valley Association of REALTORS® Global Business Council (SILVAR GBC) has been awarded the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) PLATINUM Global Achievement Program Award for 2016. This is the fourth year in a row that SILVAR has been honored with this recognition.

The platinum award is presented by NAR to an association for having demonstrated through its Global Business Council exceptional commitment to building members’ awareness of the global and multicultural business opportunities in their local markets. SILVAR’s global business council is one of a select few Platinum Councils in the country.

NAR commended the hard work of the SILVAR GBC this past year and the dedication SILVAR has contributed to raising members’ awareness of global business in our local market, noting, “Your council has shown the highest level of service to its global members by consistently providing them with the tools they need to handle international real estate. The services and resources your council works hard to provide are the benchmarks upon which the standards have been set. It has been a pleasure watching your council perform so highly in 2016 and I can’t wait to see what 2017 has in store for you and your members!”

SILVAR GBC is chaired by Mark Wong, a REALTOR® with Alain Pinel REALTORS® Saratoga. This year the GBC presented programs on feng-sui, China, the EB-5 visa and an International REALTOR® Panel with REALTORS® from Japan, Iran, the United Kingdom and France. These programs were well-attended and oversubscribed.

In June, SILVAR conducted its fifth Certified International Property Specialist (CIPS) Institute with 2012 and 2009 NAR International Instructor David Wyant. The CIPS Institute had 17 students from the San Francisco Bay Area and Canada. Most of the students were SILVAR members. Nine students from the Institute earned their CIPS designation. At present, 52 SILVAR members are CIPS designees.

Additionally, as NAR’s Ambassador Association to the Philippines, SILVAR supports and maintains ties with the Chamber of Real Estate and Builders Associations, Inc. (CREBA), SILVAR’s cooperating association in the Philippines. SILVAR member and past GBC chair Jennifer Tasto is the NAR President’s Liaison to the country.

SILVAR will be presented the platinum award at the November 4-7 NAR REALTORS®’ Conference & EXPO in Orlando.

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“Doing Business in the Philippines,” hosted by the global business council of the Silicon Valley Association of REALTORS® in November, attracted more than 40 association members and guests. The Philippines is Asia’s second fastest growing economy today and the business of real estate there is booming, according to Philippine-based real estate agents.

The program, moderated by National Association of REALTORS® President’s Liaison to the Philippines Jennifer Tasto, had as panelists International REALTOR® Members from the Philippines from the Chamber of Real Estate and Builders’ Associations Inc. (CREBA). CREBA is the Silicon Valley Association of REALTORS®’ cooperating real estate association. It is the largest real estate umbrella organization in that country. The delegation included Bernard Umali, Evangeline Yia, Arlene Posadas and Connie Castellano. Their presentations focused on buying and selling property, estate settlement, project selling, ownership of land and registering property in the Philippines.

The Filipino REALTORS® said Philippine real estate is one of the best businesses today. They said the country has an estimated population of 101 million people. Top buyers of Philippine property are early nesters due to the country’s young population, business process outsourcing workers, overseas Filipino workers and investors.

Why buy real estate in the Philippines? They said the Philippine economy rebounded with a growth of 5.6 percent in the second quarter of 2015, defying a regional slowdown which has affected countries like China and Japan.

“Filipinos are among the most globally connected in the world,” said Tasto.

Tasto said over 10 percent of Filipinos (an estimated 10 million people) live outside the Philippines and work in over 150 countries. Overseas Filipino worker remittances are at a record high, posting $26.93 billion in 2014. Of this money, 60 percent is devoted to real estate investment.

The cost of real estate in the Philippines is much more affordable than in other Asian countries, along with the rate of return on investments, added Tasto. The panelists also indicated growth in business process outsourcing and tourism has spurred real estate sales.

The Filipino REALTORS® noted bank real estate loans hit $24.47 billion in 2014, fueled by sustained demand for new homes and office space. The migration rate in Manila also has made the country’s capital a favored location for residential condominiums.

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This is a rendering of the REALTOR® Village to be built in the Philippines. NAR provided seed money to help construct containerized housing in the town of Bogo, Cebu in the Philippines.

This is a rendering of the REALTOR® Village to be built in the Philippines. NAR provided seed money to help construct containerized housing in the town of Bogo, Cebu in the Philippines.

The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) has partnered with the Chamber of Real Estate & Builders’ Association, Inc. (CREBA) to build a REALTOR® Village in the Philippines. CREBA is the exclusive partner of NAR in the Philippines, one among over 82 real estate organizations delegated with stewardship of the NAR name and programming. SILVAR is NAR’s Ambassador Association to the Philippines and maintains a cooperative relationship with CREBA.

The REALTOR® Village is a project of the Philippine American Society of Arts & Culture in cooperation with NAR and CREBA that will provide containerized housing, the first of its kind, to promote socialized housing in the town of Bogo, which is located in the island of Cebu, Philippines. NAR provided seed money for the project.

Super typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) that struck the country in November 2013 killed over 6,000 people and disrupted the lives of over a quarter of a million Filipinos, leaving them homeless. The proposed containerized housing can withstand wind of up to 100 miles an hour. The units are considered green buildings. The sustainability plan will consist of equipping recipients with aquaponics and dry hog farming. The recipients will also be planting fruit trees. The target is to build a village of 60 units, including a multipurpose center, health center and library.

A ribbon cutting ceremony attended by NAR Past President Steve Brown and NAR Treasurer Michael McGrew was held a day before the July 27-30 NAR International RELATORS® Conference hosted by CREBA in the Philippines. SILVAR member and past Global Business Council chair Jennifer Tasto, who currently serves as NAR’s President’s Liaison to the Philippines, represented NAR and SILVAR at both events.

SEE VIDEO OF REALTOR® VILLAGE RIBBON CUTTING CEREMONY HERE

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The Silicon Valley Association of REALTORS® (SILVAR) has been appointed the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) Ambassador Association to the Philippines. NAR’s Ambassador Association program gives members of the Ambassador Association the opportunity to expand their global business networks and get involved in international real estate activities at the local or state level.

“We are pleased to learn that the National Association of REALTORS® has approved SILVAR’s request to be the Ambassador Association to the Philippines. The program will give our members the opportunity to learn more about real estate in that country and develop ties and business opportunities with real estate professionals in this part of the world,” said SILVAR Executive Officer Paul Cardus.

The Ambassador Association program is part of NAR’s International Ambassador Program, which was developed to accommodate international visitors and to expose them to the range of opportunities available to them throughout NAR. Each year NAR hosts more than 2,000 real estate professionals from around the world. Majority of these international real estate professionals attend the REALTORS® Annual Conference and Expo. There are also a number of delegations and individuals that request meetings with REALTORS® throughout the year for guidance on the industry, to network, and to exchange information about the U.S. and global real estate markets. The Ambassador Association program also presents opportunities for REALTORS® interested in developing international business ties, as a result of the growing CIPS Network and globalization within local real estate markets.

As the Ambassador Association to the Philippines, SILVAR will help facilitate contact between the Chamber of Real Estate and Builders Association in the Philippines and any state or local REALTOR® association in the United States that requests assistance. The Ambassador Association works closely with the President’s Liaison assigned to that country and NAR’s Regional Coordinator for that part of the world.

A formal introduction with the Chamber of Real Estate and Builders Association will take place at the NAR REALTORS® Conference & Expo, which will be held November 8-11 in San Francisco.

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