San Francisco Real Estate: Escrow Out Loud

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Is Real Estate Brokerage an Essential Business?

Season 4, Ep. 96

Is real estate an essential service during the mandatory shelter-in-place directive issued on March 16, 2020 in San Francisco county.


Links mentioned in show:


Federal Directive from DHS that is not binding (Mar 28, PDF)


SF list of essential businesses and exemptions


Open San Francisco city services


How you can volunteer during the shelter-in-place directive


SF Social Distancing Guidelines




#stayhome, #staysafe


In this episode we address the confusion about real estate's classification as an essential business.


The one situation I can imagine where it is okay to do business as a broker: if you have a court order to sell a home and want to livestream a tour with no one else present, go for it. Then remember that title companies are not open, appraisers and inspectors are not essential businesses for transactional activities, and if you can put that deal together and get it to closing while staying 6 feet away from everyone, I salute you and invite you on to the podcast to tell us all how you did it! 


Otherwise, stay home. If you are stuck at home and looking for ways to volunteer, the city has a page with links and suggestions to volunteer opportunities during the mandatory shelter-in-place directive. 


While the business of real estate is transacting business on behalf of our clients, my joy and meaning, and what has kept me in the real estate business, is the satisfaction of helping another person. While now is not the time to transact, it is absolutely the time to do whatever you are able to do to help our neighbors, both literally and figuratively.


Sitting still, much less staying home, is hard for all of us . I can’t wait to do business with you when the directive is lifted, and until then the best way to help everyone in San Francisco is to stay home and stay safe. 



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3/1/2021

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Season 5, Ep. 109
Episode 109 Panelists, listed alpha by last name:Dena Aslanian-WilliamsRealtor Extraordinaire. Don't let this short bio fool you, she's a phenomenal REALTOR! with Compass Real Estate at the time of publication.Kevin BirminghamFounder, Park North Real EstateA west-side San Francisco native, Kevin is a Past President (2018) of the San Francisco Association of Realtors, the founder of Park North Real Estate, and has consistently performed in the top 1% of agents nationwide. Kevin has a degree in economics from Colorado State University, raising three kids in the city with his wife Terra. When not rabble-rousing for a fairer city, Kevin is a huge Bay Area sports fan and can be found out walking the family dog. Tia HunnicuttMarried for 30 years, mother of three. *Licensed as a Broker since 2009*Past President of the Oakland Association of Realtors*Immediate Past Chair of Bridge MLS*CAR Region 6 Chair*CAR Executive Committee*Coldwell Banker International President's Circle*Coldwell Banker Global Luxury*NAR certifications and designations: Accredited Buyer Representative, E-Pro, Pricing Strategy Advisor, Short-Sales and Foreclosures Resource, Seniors Real Estate Specialist, At Home with Diversity, Certified Luxury Home Marketing SpecialistDr. Veronica HunnicuttCommunity Advocate and ActivistFormer Educator at San Francisco Unified School District (in the Engineering and English Departments)Former Educator and Administrator at City College of San Francisco (English Department/Chair of African American Studies/Dean of the Southeast Campus/Dean of the Office of Student Affairs)Former Member of the Mayor's Citizens Advisory Committee for Community DevelopmentCommissioner on the Commission on the Status of WomenCommissioner on the San Francisco Housing AuthorityChair, Minnie and Lovie Park CRC ( Parks and Recreation site)Founding Board Member, Alliance for GirlsChair, Citizens Advisory Committee for the ShipyardCEO, HG Inc.Recipient of various Community Awards and CommendationsProud Mother of Tia HunnicuttAllen M. OkamotoBroker/Owner, T. Okamoto & Co.GRI, SRES, CIPS CRB, CRSWe are a small boutique real estate brokerage in San Francisco's Japantown. Although our primary market is Japanese we service almost all of the Bay Area Counties. We specialize in single family homes, condos and small apartments. We also have a very active property management department.Over the past 30 plus years I have been involved in fair housing and diversity issues at the San Francisco, California and National Association of Realtors. At SFAR I formed the Asian Council which made the association a more friendly place for Asians to express their collective views. I was the first elected member of the board of directors and the first Asian President of the Board.At the California Association of Realtors, I founded the International Forum where Realtors could explore opportunities in foreign countries and to learn about their customs and cultures. I also chaired the Equal Opportunity Cultural Diversity committee.At the National Association of Realtors, I was on the work forcethat developed the "AT Home with Diversity" designation. I was the Chair of the Fair Housing Forum and the first chair of the Equal Opportunity committee.In 2003 I was part of the group that formed the Asian Real Estate Association of America AREAA, the first national Asian real estate organization. We now have over 17,000 members and 42 chapters across theUnited States and Canada. We are the largest Asian membership organization in the United States.I currently serve on the California Association of RealtorsFair Housing & Diversity Task Force.An Apology From the National Association of REALTORS® for our past discriminatory behavior at the National board level.