News & Media

Coastal hosts three local candidate forums
June 8, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – The Coastal Association of REALTORS® (Coastal) recently held three public candidate forums for upcoming county elections.
 
The Worcester County Commissioners Forum was held on Thursday, May 31 at the Ocean Pines Branch of the Worcester County Public Library. Nine candidates for office participated in the event, which was moderated by Stewart Dobson of Ocean City Today.
 
        
(From left) Coastal Vice President Joe Wilson and Worcester County Candidates Bud Church, Joshua Nordstrom, Ted Elder, Chip Bertino, Zackery Tyndall, Joe Mitrecic, Virgil Shockley, Judy Butler, and Jim Bunting. Photo 
 
The Somerset County Commissioners Forum was held on Tuesday, June 5 at the Somerset Convention Center in Princess Anne. Local...
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Contracts, inventory, home prices up on Lower Shore
June 8, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – Contracts, inventory, and home prices are up on Maryland’s Lower Eastern Shore, according to the latest numbers from the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (Coastal).
 
May 2018 saw an overall 7.6 percent increase in contracts, or pending sales, compared to the same time last year in Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester counties. Individually, single family home contracts increased by 43 percent in Worcester and by 33.3 percent in Somerset, but decreased by 17.3 percent in Wicomico. Condominium contracts increased by 3.4 percent in Worcester and by 12.5 percent in Wicomico, but decreased by 50 percent in Somerset.
 
Inventory was also up, showing an overall 2.6 percent bump in May. Individually, single family home listings were up by 15.8 percent in Worcester and by three percent in Wicomico, but were down by 5.6 percent in Somerset. Condominium listings were up by 0.8 percent in...
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Coastal visits Capitol Hill for Legislative Meetings
May 29, 2018
Washington, DC – During the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) Annual Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo in Washington, DC, REALTORS® from across the country, including members from the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (Coastal), traveled to Capitol Hill to meet with their federal elected officials.
 
       
REALTORS® and association staff from across Maryland meet with Rep. Andy Harris on Capitol Hill during the 2018 National Association of REALTORS® Legislative Meetings & Expo. 
 
The purpose of the visits is to share with elected officials NAR’s legislative priorities, which this year include strong net neutrality protections, long term reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), tax policy improvements, and equal access to housing...
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Coastal sponsors county election candidate forums
May 22, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – The Coastal Association of REALTORS® (Coastal) will sponsor forums for the candidates running for election in each of the three Lower Eastern Shore counties.
 
The Worcester County Commissioners Candidate Forum will be held on Thursday, May 31 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Ocean Pines branch of the Worcester County Public Library. The following candidates have confirmed their participation: Chip Bertino, Jim Bunting, Judy Butler, Bud Church, Ted Elder, Joe Mitrecic, Joshua Nordstrom, Diana Purnell, Virgil Shockley, and Zackery Tyndall.
 
The Somerset County Commissioners Forum will be held on Tuesday, June 5 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Princess Anne Civic Center. The following candidates have confirmed their participation: Ken Ballard, Eddie Brimer, Mike Corbin, Charles Fisher, SueKay Ford, Charles Laird, and Deborah...
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Second quarter kicks off with increased housing inventory
May 11, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – The second quarter of 2018 kicked off with increased housing inventory, according to the latest numbers from the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (Coastal).
 
April 2018 saw an overall 4.6 percent increase in residential listings, compared to the same time last year in Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester counties. Individually, single family home listings increased by 3.4 percent in Wicomico and by 3.6 percent in Somerset, but decreased by 5.8 percent in Worcester. Condominium listings increased by 11.5 percent in Worcester and by 66.7 percent in Wicomico, but were down by 50 percent in Somerset.
 
Contract starts were also up, showing a 2.5 percent increase in April throughout the Tri-County area. Individually, single family home contracts remained the same in Worcester, and increased by 2.9 percent in Wicomico and by 86.7 percent in Somerset. Condominium contracts increased by...
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Coastal REALTORS® hosts annual Legislative Reception
May 11, 2018
Salisbury, MD – The Coastal Association of REALTORS® (Coastal) held its annual Legislative Reception on Wednesday, May 10, 2018 at the Ward Museum.
 
      
(From left) Del. Charles Otto, Del. Carl Anderton, Del. Sheree Sample-Hughes, Sen. Jim Mathias, Coastal Director Grace Masten, Coastal President-Elect Bernie Flax, Del. Johnny Mautz, Coastal Director Steven Parsons, Coastal President Joel Maher, Coastal Director Brandon Johnson, Del. Mary Beth Carozza, Coastal Vice President Joe Wilson, Coastal Immediate Past President Don Bailey, Coastal Director Austin Whitehead, and Del. Chris Adams. 
 
Over 60 REALTOR® and affiliate members, state elected officials, and local elected officials attended the event, held in the Thomas F. Mullan Jr. Legacy Center. Attendees enjoyed hors d’oeuvres...
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Coastal welcomes 22 new members
May 4, 2018
Berlin, Md. – The Coastal Association of REALTORS® (Coastal) welcomed 22 new members during New Member Orientation on Thursday, May 3, 2018.
         
            
(From left) Albert Gjoni of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty in West Ocean City; Ann Scanlon of Coldwell Banker Commercial in Ocean City; Zachary Watkins of Condominium Realty in Ocean City; Stephen Brown of Re/Max Coast & Country in Delmar, Del.; Eka Suryadi of Keller Williams Realty of Delmarva in Ocean City; Kelly Hemmings of Coldwell Banker Residential 120th Street in Ocean City; Robert Baer of Keller Williams Realty of Delmarva in Salisbury; Amanda Forsythe of Shamrock Realty Group in Ocean Pines; James Coode of Beach Real Estate in Berlin; Karla Oass of Long & Foster Real Estate in Ocean City; Christopher Lane of Long...
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Coastal endorses Shanie Shields for Wicomico County Council
May 3, 2018
Salisbury, Md. – The Coastal Association of REALTORS® (Coastal) is pleased to announce its endorsement of Eugenie “Shanie” Shields for the District 1 seat on the Wicomico County Council.

               
(From left) Coastal Government & Public Affairs Director Sarah Rayne, Coastal Board Secretary Joni Williamson, District 1 Candidate Shanie Shields, Coastal Director Austin Whitehead, and Coastal Director Brandon Johnson. 
 
Shields served on the Salisbury City Council for over 10 years and was a tireless advocate for affordable housing and homeownership. She supported a number of key initiatives that greatly benefitted the city, including the city’s flood study, repairs on Isabella Street, and cleanup of the Coty Cox River, among others.
 
“Shanie is...
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Local fair housing contest winner honored in Annapolis
April 27, 2018
Annapolis, Md. – Maxi Ruggerio, a fifth grader at Worcester Preparatory School, traveled to Annapolis with family, teachers, and representatives from the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (Coastal) on Monday, April 23, 2018 for a special recognition ceremony with Maryland Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford.
 
      
(From left) Coastal Association of REALTORS® President Joel Maher, Worcester Preparatory Head of Lower School Laura Holmes, Worcester Preparatory School Art Teacher Rebecca Tittermary, 5th grader Maxi Ruggerio, Cindy and Rhett Ruggerio, and Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford. Photo courtesy of Executive Office of the Governor.
 
The ceremony, held in the Maryland State House, honored 13 students from across the state who were chosen...
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Nearly 200 real estate professionals attend 2018 REALTOR® Fair & Technology Expo
April 25, 2018
Ocean City, Md. – The Coastal Association of REALTORS® (Coastal) held its third annual REALTOR® Fair & Technology Expo on Thursday, April 19, 2018 at the Roland E. Powell Convention Center in Ocean City.
 
                    
(From left) Coastal Director Steven Parsons of Coldwell Banker Residential in Salisbury, Coastal Executive Vice President Page Browning, Coastal President-elect Bernie Flax of EXIT Realty At The Beach in Ocean Pines, and Coastal President Joel Maher of Coldwell Banker Residential in Salisbury. 
 
The event featured 28 vendors that provide services utilized by REALTORS® to expand their business and better serve their clients. Almost 200 real estate professionals, both locally and from across the state and Delaware, attended the event. The event concluded...
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Williamson wins awards, graduates from Maryland REALTORS® Leadership Academy
April 25, 2018
Annapolis, Md. – Joni Williamson, president and associate broker of ERA Martin & Associates in Salisbury and secretary of the Executive Committee of the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (Coastal) Board of Directors, was one of 20 graduates from the 2018 Maryland REALTORS® 18th Annual Leadership Academy honored at ceremonies held recently in Annapolis.
 
                     
(From left) Maryland REALTORS® Leadership Academy Chair John Harrison, Academy Graduate Joni Williamson, and Maryland REALTORS® President Boyd Campbell.
 
The Maryland REALTORS® Leadership Academy was formed by REALTORS® who understand the important role they play in their community and the need to enhance the leadership skills, knowledge, and competencies of fellow REALTORS®...
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Low inventory drives up sale prices, creates sellers’ market
April 12, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – Low inventory numbers are driving up sale prices and creating an attractive sellers’ market, according to the latest numbers from the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR).
 
March 2018 saw an overall 2.7 percent dip in single family home and condominium listings compared to the same time last year in Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester counties. Individually, single family home listings decreased by 3.3 percent in Wicomico and by 3.7 percent in Somerset, but increased by 10.6 percent in Worcester. Condominium listings decreased by 7.4 percent in Worcester, by 26.7 percent in Wicomico, and by 42.9 percent in Somerset.
 
These lower inventory numbers are driving up average sale prices, which increased overall by 17.6 percent in all three counties. Average list prices were up by 18.4 percent.
 
Contracts were down overall in the Tri-County area by 3.8...
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CAR endorses Bud Church for Worcester County Commissioners
March 20, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – The Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR) is pleased to announce its endorsement of longtime REALTOR® Bud Church in his reelection bid for the District 3 seat on the Worcester County Commissioners.
 
            
(From left) CAR Vice President Joseph Wilson, REALTOR® and Worcester County Commissioners incumbent Bud Church, CAR Director Austin Whitehead, CAR RPAC Chair Rick Proctor, and CAR President Joel Maher. 
 
Church is a REALTOR® Emeritus, meaning he has been a member of CAR and of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) for over 40 years. He has served as president of CAR and as president of the Maryland REALTORS®. He’s also served as Regional Vice President for NAR. Church has been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from CAR, as well...
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CAR announces Fair Housing Art Contest finalists
March 15, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – The Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR) has chosen two finalists in this year’s Fair Housing Art Contest.
 
                  
(From left) Head of Lower School Laura Holmes; 5th grader Maxi Ruggerio; CAR Board Member Austin Whitehead; 3rd grader Isha Garg; and Art Teacher Rebecca Tittermary. 
  • Isha Garg, 3rd grade, Worcester Preparatory School
  • Maxi Ruggerio, 5th grade, Worcester Preparatory School
Each finalist received a framed copy of their submission and a Visa gift card, compliments of CAR.
 
The two finalists have been forwarded to the Maryland REALTORS®. Only one will be chosen for inclusion in the statewide 2019 Fair Housing Brochure. That winner...
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CAR releases 2017 local housing reports
March 15, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – The Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR) released its 2017 local housing reports for the three counties and their municipalities at the association’s Media Breakfast on Thursday, March 15, 2018.
 
According to CAR, REALTORS® in the Tri-County area sold 3,795 homes worth a total of $873.4 million throughout 2017. The average sale price of a home was $230,161. When compared to five years ago, inventory decreased by 6.2 percent, new contracts increased by 39.7 percent, home sales increased by 41.5 percent, and home values increased by 2.9 percent.
 
“Overall, the Lower Shore’s real estate market is doing very well,” said CAR President Joel Maher. “In many areas, we’re seeing 2017 numbers that surpass pre-recession numbers, which is incredible. There is a strong demand in our area,...
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CAR Reminder: Carbon monoxide alarms only required in some rentals
March 8, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – The deadline for installation of carbon monoxide (CO) alarms in some rental properties is April 1, 2018, and the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR) is reminding the public that alarms are only required in properties that contain a carbon monoxide source.
 
In 2016, the Maryland General Assembly passed House Bill 849 and its companion Senate Bill 182. These bills require the installation of carbon monoxide alarms for any new and existing rental units that contain any fuel burning equipment or wood burning appliance, or has an enclosed attached garage. They are not required in rental dwelling units that are powered solely by an electric power supply,...
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February market opens good buying window
March 8, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – Local home prices are down, according to the latest numbers from the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR).
 
February 2018 saw an overall 25.2 percent dip in single family home and condominium average sale prices compared to the same time last month in Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester counties. Individually, single family home prices decreased by 29.9 percent in Worcester, by 20.3 percent in Wicomico, and by 43.7 percent in Somerset. Condominium sale prices increased by four percent in Worcester and decreased by 71.2 percent in Wicomico. There was no data available for Somerset condominium sale prices. Listing prices in all three counties also decreased by an overall 25.2 percent.
 
Inventory was down overall by 11.2 percent in all three counties compared to the same time last year. Individually, single family home inventory was down by 20.9 percent in Worcester and by 32.5...
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CAR welcomes 20 new members
February 23, 2018
Berlin, Md. – The Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR) welcomed 20 new members during New Member Orientation on Wednesday, February 21, 2018.
 
(Back Row, From left) Anne Tingle of Keller Williams Realty of Delmarva; Nona Clubb of Clubb Realty; Andrea Whittington of Condominium Realty; Jo Ann Brandt of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty; Douglas Kifolo of Condominium Realty; Linda Slacum of ERA Martin & Associates;  William Quillin of ERA Martin & Associates; Terence Wittstadt of CTW Real Property Appraisals; Kelly Wright of Long & Foster Real Estate; Karen Taraila of Keller Williams Realty of Delmarva; Leslie Scherlag of Keller Williams Realty of Delmarva; Chelsea Cloyd of Century 21 New Horizon; George Pierson of Whitney-Wallace Commercial; Chase Church of Coldwell Banker Bud Church Realty; and George...
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CAR hosts first Bowling for Business Cards event
February 5, 2018
Salisbury, Md. – The Coastal Association of REALTORS® held its first Bowling for Business Cards networking event and competition on Friday, January 26, 2018 at SouthBound Alley in Salisbury.
 
              
Team ‘Coldwell Banker Bowlers’ won first place in CAR’s inaugural Bowling for Business Cards event. (From left) Steve Parsons, Greg Erdie, Brad Rayfield, and CAR President Joel Maher. 
 
Nine teams of CAR members and guests competed to earn the top three scores. Winners received trophies and gift cards. First place went to Coldwell Banker Bowlers, comprised of Greg Erdie, CAR President Joel Maher, Steve Parsons, and Brad Rayfield. Second place went to The Strikers, comprised of Kayla Bandy, Neda Cox, Mitch Marriner, and Andy McBride. Third place went to Wells Fargo Team,...
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January real estate market sees increased contracts, settlements
February 5, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – Despite January’s frigid temperatures, local real estate activity remained steady, according to the latest numbers from the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR).
 
The first month of 2018 saw an overall 12.9 percent jump in single family home and condominium contracts compared to the same time last year in Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester counties. Individually, single family home contracts increased by 35.4 percent in Wicomico County, but decreased by 1.6 percent in Worcester and by 6.7 percent in Somerset. Condominium contracts increased by 7.4 percent in Worcester County and by 200 percent in Somerset County, but decreased by 33.3 percent in Wicomico.
 
Settlements were up overall by 0.5 percent in the Tri-County area. Individually, single family home settlements increased by 88.9 percent in Somerset, but decreased by five percent in Worcester and by 11.9 percent in...
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CAR members meet with state legislators in Annapolis
January 22, 2018
Annapolis, Md. – Members and staff from the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR) traveled to Annapolis on Wednesday, January 17 to participate in the Maryland REALTORS® 2018 Lobby Day.
 
             
Members and staff from the Coastal Association of REALTORS® participated in the 2018 Maryland REALTORS® Lobby Day in Annapolis. (From left) Sarah Rayne, Austin Whitehead, Joni Williamson, Cameron Drew, Grace Masten, Sen. Jim Mathias, Kate Deckenback, Brandon Johnson, Vicki Harmon, Joel Maher, Page Browning, Rick Proctor, and Steve Cohen. 
 
This annual event is an opportunity for REALTOR® and affiliate members to meet with their individual state senators and delegates to discuss real estate and homeowner issues. CAR joined hundreds of REALTORS® and affiliates from across...
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CAR members respond to possible elimination of USDA loans in Ocean Pines
January 19, 2018
Ocean Pines, Md. – An upcoming review conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) could result in Ocean Pines’ loss of eligibility for Rural Housing Development Program loans, and members of the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR) are concerned about funding accessibility for future buyers.
 
Last month, the USDA Rural Development Delaware/Maryland State Office released a public notice stating the department is conducting a review of all areas under its jurisdiction to identify those that no longer qualify as rural for housing programs. This review is done every five years, according to the notice, and will utilize the 2015 American Community Survey data. Among the areas under review in Maryland is Ocean Pines in Worcester County.
 
“There is a...
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Local REALTORS® earn National Emeritus status
January 11, 2018
Berlin, Md. – Three members of the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR) recently achieved the coveted National REALTOR® Emeritus status.
 
              
(From left) Michael Weisner of Weisner Real Estate, CAR President Joel Maher, and Charles “Chuck” Shorley of Shore-Lea Realty. Not pictured is Lester Chandler of Coldwell Banker Residential on 64th Street in Ocean City. Chandler, Shorley, and Weisner have earned National REALTOR® Emeritus status. 
 
Lester Chandler of Coldwell Banker Residential on 64th Street in Ocean City, Charles “Chuck” Shorley of Shore-Lea Realty in Ocean City, and Michael Weisner of Weisner Real Estate in Salisbury were approved as National REALTOR® Emeritus during the 2017 National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) Annual...
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Holiday real estate market shows increased activity
January 9, 2018
Lower Eastern Shore, Md. – The holidays on Maryland’s Lower Eastern Shore boasted a slight increase in real estate activity, according to the latest numbers from the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR).
 
December 2017 saw an overall one percent jump in single family home and condominium contracts compared to the same time last year in Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester counties. Individually, single family home contracts increased by 5.3 percent in Wicomico County, decreased by 21.6 percent in Worcester County, and remained the same in Somerset County. Condominium contracts increased by 20 percent in Worcester and by 100 percent in Somerset, but remained the same in Wicomico.
 
Settlements were up overall by 2.2 in the Tri-County area. Individually, single family home settlements were up by 5.3 percent in Worcester County and were down by 3.9 percent in Wicomico and by 21.1 percent in Somerset....
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CAR members donate food, cash to Maryland Food Bank
December 18, 2017
Ocean City, Md. – The over 200 members of the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR) who attended the association’s 2017 Holiday Party at Seacrets donated 497 pounds of nonperishable food items and over $450 in cash to the Maryland Food Bank of the Eastern Shore.
 
           
Members of the CAR Board of Directors stand with food donations collected for the Maryland Food Bank of the Eastern Shore during the association’s 2017 Holiday Party. (From left) Director Steven Parsons, Director Grant Fritschle, President Joel Maher, Director Jeff Powell, Director Grace Masten, Director Brandon Johnson, Vice President Joe Wilson, and Director Austin Whitehead. 
 
All members attending the December 6, 2017 party were asked to bring at least one nonperishable food item. The 497 pounds of food...
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