A Week In Business

Top Office Producers

Realtors with Mark Fritschle Group-Condominium Realty are pictured at a recent sales meeting where July leaders were announced. Submitted Photos

Realtors with Mark Fritschle Group-Condominium Realty are pictured at a recent sales meeting where July leaders were announced. Submitted Photos

OCEAN CITY — Ed Wehnert and Mark and Lora Fritschle of the Mark Fritschle Group-Condominium Realty have announced their listing, sales and settlement leaders for July, a great month in what has been a record breaking year for the company, according to officials.

Topping the listing by unit category were Sheri Smith, Rusty Molnar, Joy Snyder, Joel Feldman and Andrea Thomas.

Top listing by dollars were Sheri Smith, Joy Snyder and Tracy Zell

Top pending were Joy Snyder, Sheri Smith and Christina Ager.

Top settled by units were Christina Ager, Dave Whittington, Joy Snyder and Sheri Smith.

Top settled by dollars were Dave Whittington, Joy Snyder, Grant Fritschle and Jon Barker.

New Team Member

OCEAN PINES — Carole Spurrier has recently joined Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty as a sales professional. The announcement was made by Sharon Curtiss, branch manager of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty in Ocean Pines.

Carole Spurrier

Carole Spurrier

Spurrier will concentrate on residential real estate sales as a member of The O’Hare Team. She was previously an executive sales vice president with Lucent Technologies with responsibilities for sales to the large telecommunications companies in North America. She has over 30 years of experience in sales. She also owned and operated the Marina Deck Restaurant in Ocean Pines.

“Carole shares Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty’s commitment to quality and customer service,” said Curtiss. “She is exactly the type of sales professional we are seeking, as we continue to grow the company, and increase our presence in the local community. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty’s focus on the customer and its goal to provide the best products and services for its sales professionals are what make affiliating with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices PenFed Realty the best choice possible.”

Disposal Service Offered

FRUITLAND – Apple Discount Drugs has announced a free disposal service for unused and expired prescriptions (including controlled substances) and over the counter medications.

Apple has partnered with Wicomico County Health Department to install a MedSafe medication disposal box at the Fruitland location on Route 13 and South Cedar Lane. MedSafe offers collection that is safe and meets the requirements of the DEA Controlled Substance Act.

“When was the last time you cleaned out the medicine cabinet in your bathroom?,” said Jeff Sherr, president of Apple Discount Drugs. “It’s not always top of mind but we encourage people to make it a priority just like they would changing the batteries in their smoke detectors. Since there are specific requirements for the disposal of prescription drugs and other medications, we wanted to make it more convenient for people to dispose of their unused medications. The MedSafe we have in the Fruitland store offers that convenience.”

Items that can be dropped off anonymously in the medsafe drop box include prescriptions, over the counter medications, vitamins and pet medications. Before you drop off your medications, remove personal information from bottles and containers. Liquids, needles, thermometers and biohazard materials are not permitted for disposal in the MedSafe box.

Other local convenient lobby drop-off locations include the Wicomico County Sheriff’s Office, 401 Naylor Mill Road, Salisbury; Delmar Police Department, 102 South Penn Avenue Delmar; Fruitland Police Department, 208 S. Division Street Fruitland; Salisbury Police Department, 699 W. Salisbury Parkway, Salisbury; and Maryland State Police Barracks 2765 N. Salisbury Boulevard, Salisbury.

Accreditation Announced

BERLIN — Atlantic General Hospital has announced Atlantic General Bariatric Center has been accredited as a Center of Excellence under the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP), a joint program of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS).

The MBSAQIP Standards, outlined in the Resources for Optimal Care of the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Patient 2014 ensure that bariatric surgical patients receive a multidisciplinary program, not just a surgical procedure, which improves patient outcomes and long-term success. The accredited center offers preoperative and postoperative care designed specifically for their severely obese patients.

“We’re very honored to have received this designation. Our team is very deserving of this accolade as they strive each day to provide patients with the level of quality care they deserve in a safe, caring environment,” commented Dr. Alae Zarif, Medical Director of Surgical Services at Atlantic General Bariatric Center.

Atlantic General Bariatric Center’s commitment to quality care begins with appropriately trained staff and the leadership of surgeons who participate in meetings throughout the year to review its outcomes. They seek continuous improvement to enhance the structure, process and outcomes of the center.

To earn the MBSAQIP designation, the bariatric center met essential criteria for staffing, training and facility infrastructure and protocols for care, ensuring its ability to support patients with severe obesity. The center also participates in a national data registry that yields semiannual reports on the quality of its processes and outcomes, identifying opportunities for continuous quality improvement. The standards are specified in the MBSAQIP Resources for Optimal Care of the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Patient 2014, published by the ACS and ASMBS.

Centers seeking MBSAQIP Accreditation undergo an extensive site visit by an experienced bariatric surgeon, who reviews the center’s structure, process, and clinical outcomes data. According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), more than one-third (34.9% or 78.6 million) of U.S. adults are obese. Obesity increases the risks of morbidity and mortality because of the diseases and conditions that are commonly associated with it, such as type II diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease, among other health risks.

CAR Joins National Real Estate Organization

BERLIN – To ensure the clarity of its Multiple Listing Service (MLS) data, the Coastal Association of REALTORS® (CAR) has joined the Real Estate Standards Organization (RESO).

“By joining RESO, CAR is ensuring its data is standardized so that it is easily understood by brokers, agents, and clients across the country,” said Veronica Bishop, CAR’s MLS Administrator. “For example, the definition of a bedroom or a waterfront property will be the same in our MLS as it is in an MLS owned by any other association or broker.”

CAR’s MLS tracks the activity of 1,000 REALTORS® in Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester counties. The MLS is a vital tool to help listing brokers find cooperative brokers working with buyers to help sell their clients’ homes. Without the collaborative incentive of the MLS, brokers would create their own separate systems of cooperation, fragmenting rather than consolidating property information. CAR’s MLS also provides local, accurate, trusted market data for the benefit of the public.

RESO is a national organization that develops, adopts and implements open data standards and processes across all real estate transactions. RESO provides an environment for the development and implementation of data standards and processes that facilitate software innovation, ensures portability, eliminates redundancies, and obtains maximum efficiencies for all parties participating in real estate transactions.

Beginning Jan. 1, the board of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) implemented a policy that requires the roughly 850 REALTOR®-affiliated MLSs across the country to comply with the RESO Data Dictionary, a set of standard data fields for property information, ensuring “all MLSs will speak the same language,” said Jeremy Crawford, Executive Director of RESO.

“The Data Dictionary has been dubbed our industry’s ‘Rosetta Stone’ as we will move from having 850 different data dialects, if you will, to having one common way to talk to any MLS,” Crawford said. “This is a huge breakthrough for any real estate brokerage firm that has to connect to more than one MLS.”

CAR Executive Vice President Page Browning said the association is complying with industry standards to provide top notch service to its members so they can provide top notch service to their clients.

“We have many members who sell real estate all over Delmarva and therefore access various MLSs,” Browning said. “Being a member of RESO will ensure our members can work in these different MLSs in the most efficient way possible.”

Also coming down the pike for RESO members is an update to the Real Estate Transaction Standards (RETS) application program interface (API) which provides a common language so that computers can more easily transfer real estate information, such as MLS data, to other computer programs or websites. The update aims to provide a more open data approach using the widely-adopted RESTful (Representational State Transfer) technology in use by many industries today. RESO’s move toward a RESTful standard is to encourage and promote access to real estate information directly from web, mobile, social, and other HTTP-based applications.

Veteran Firm Completes AGH Pediatric Construction

SALISBURY — Delmarva Veteran Builders, the region’s only commercial construction firm dedicated to bringing employment to U.S. Armed Forces Veterans, announced the completion of the retrofit and renovation of Atlantic General Pediatric Care on Gina Renee Plaza on Route 50 in Ocean City. The 2,350-square-foot project was completed for the relocation of a local AGH pediatrician and allows for the addition of a new pediatrician under the AGH umbrella.

“Delmarva Veteran Builders is thrilled to have the opportunity to work with Atlantic General again,” said Chris Eccleston, Delmarva Veteran Builders.  “We look forward to growing the relationship we have with Atlantic General and will continue to support them in meeting the healthcare needs of the community.”

The original tenant in the space was an Urgent Care Center. AGH used the existing exam rooms for the practice and has hired DVB to reconfigure the rest of the space to me more pediatric friendly. The two pediatricians who will be seeing patients at Atlantic General Pediatric Care are Dr. Anita Pascucci and Dr. Laura Scope.

July Market Report

BERLIN – The number of homes sold increased in much of Maryland’s Eastern Shore region in July, according to The Long & Foster Market Minute reports. The Eastern Shore market includes Worcester, Wicomico, Dorchester, Queen Anne’s, Talbot and Caroline counties.

The Long & Foster Market Minute reports are compiled from data from residential real estate transactions within specific geographic regions, not just Long & Foster sales.

The Eastern Shore real estate market saw some positive trends in the number of homes sold in July. In Talbot County the number of homes sold increased by 53 percent, followed by a 37 percent jump in Worcester County and a 33 percent increase in Dorchester County. Queen Anne’s County experienced a 22 percent increase in the number of homes sold, and Wicomico County saw a 13 percent increase. In Caroline County the number of homes sold decreased by 16 percent.

The median sale price varied across the Eastern Shore region, with Dorchester County seeing a 21 percent increase and Worcester County seeing a 6 percent increase compared to the same month last year. In Caroline County the median sale price rose by 3 percent, followed by a 2 percent increase in Wicomico County. Other areas experienced declines from 27 percent to 31 percent.

Inventory decreased in the entire Eastern Shore region when compared to year-ago levels, according to July data. Worcester County experienced the largest drop at 14 percent, followed by Caroline County at 13 percent. Wicomico County saw active inventory decease by 9 percent, and both Dorchester and Queen Anne’s counties saw inventory decrease by 2 percent. In Talbot County, active inventory decreased by 1 percent.

In most areas of the region, homes are selling in three to five months on average, according to the July data. Wicomico County experienced an average days on market (DOM) of 89 days, followed by Queen Anne’s County at 112 days. The rest of the region saw homes selling between 115 to 133 days on average.

“The United States’ economy has been having a good summer, and the positivity we’ve been seeing in previous months continued in July. The real estate industry also reflected these trends, which was evident in the increase in the number of homes sold in the Eastern Shore region,” said Jeffrey S. Detwiler, president and chief operating officer for The Long & Foster Companies. “We feel confident that we’ll continue to see improvements in the market, and look forward to what the end of summer and start of fall will bring.”

Business Relocates

SALISBURY – Tonney Insley, advisor at Sperry Van Ness-Miller Commercial Real Estate, has announced that Barefoot Baby Boutique has moved from downtown Princess Anne to a window-front space in the Plaza Building in downtown Salisbury.

Barefoot Baby signed a three-year lease for the new space on the Downtown Plaza. Insley represented the baby boutique and SVN-Miller Advisors Rick Tilghman and Will Moore represented the landlord.

Barefoot Baby Boutique is owned and operated by Martha Ogburn, who has a background in neonatal nursing and a graduate degree in childhood development. In addition to selling items hand-picked to accommodate the needs of new families and children ranging in age from newborn to kindergarten, Ogburn aims to provide local families with information to help ease their transition into parenthood.

“Once I made the difficult decision to move my business from its original location in Princess Anne, Tonney was extremely insightful in understanding my needs and connecting all the dots,” said Ogburn.