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Date Archives: October 2020

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While I think many people are already firm in their decision on who they are voting for, especially given the record number of early voters, absentee ballots and mail-in ballots this year, you may still on the fence. These two candidates have drastic contrasts to how they will impact real estate if elected. To help you understand differences and make a decision not just with your heart but with your mind as well, here is a quick cheat sheet with the differences between President Trump and Joe Biden.

If you are investing in real estate, both in terms of your own home or investment opportunities, Joe Biden has proposed some radical policies. Along with his ideas to implement to the fullest extent the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) mandate, which we have explored in previous weeks, is the plan to support first-time homebuyers by providing a tax credit up to $15,000, while also offering down payment assistance for service workers. He would supply tax credits to renters, as well as increasing the number of Section 8 vouchers.

Speaking of rentals, Biden has also been vocal of supporting rental and mortgage forgiveness. Investors and owners of properties rely on rent to cover utilities, property maintenance, real estate taxes and income for hard working people. Also, Section 8 housing could impact property values.

Additionally, Joe Biden has made it clear tax rates will go up while he also eliminates the 1031 tax loophole. This tax law allows investors to offset their real estate taxes by claiming losses due to property depreciation.

A re-election of President Trump continues with more of the same policies he has enforced while adding new efforts to benefit everyone.

Over the past 4 years, President Trump has made a conscious decision to push our nation towards growth and stimulating the economy. Unlike Biden, Trump will not lift strict zoning laws on single-family residences, as he has proven by terminating the AFFH. This move has retained the value of homes and communities even during a pandemic. However, he has also created "opportunity zones," designed to support real estate growth in underdeveloped communities, giving more opportunities to individuals to own homes, find places to live and be a part of a community of their choosing.

While many label President Trump as a person who continues to support the wealthy, he actually limited the allowable deduction for mortgage interest, decreasing it from $1 million to $750,000, helping lower and middle-class homeowners by significantly decreasing their taxes, while "his friends" in the upper-middle and upper-classes ALL saw an increase in taxes. Lastly, President Trump wants to see through his promise to transition Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from federal to private guidance, making it more stable, secure and fair.

While previous elections tell us to expect a 15% drop in home sales during the 4th quarter of an election year, all trends are showing no signs of the real estate market slowing down. Most experts and predictions show a strong future as mortgage rates continue to be at an all-time low. While Covid-19 is impacting the income of people, home prices are remaining stable and, given the current economy, the value will only continue to grow.

No one knows what Tuesday will have in store for all of us as a country and the impact it will have on the real estate industry. One thing we do know is, YOU HAVE A CHOICE! Be sure to vote and make your own future.


Canfield, OH (October 20, 2020) – Have you ever played the game when you were a kid where you would spin a globe and wherever your finger stopped it, that's where you would live? We all would hope for a place where we would find happiness, opportunity and a location we would be able to call, "home." For Ashley Montalvo and her husband, they were looking for a new opportunity to raise their family and start a new life together. When the globe stopped, Youngstown was their destination. She and her family excitedly moved to Northeast Ohio and we are excited she did, as we welcome her as the newest member of our family of agents at Burgan Real Estate.

Montalvo was born and raised on the East Coast in Rhode Island. The smallest state in the country could not contain the huge dreams and opportunities that awaited her. She was an influential team member with a telecommunications company as a quality assurance specialist. It was there she realized her ability to be part of a solution for people was something she enjoyed. When the company she was loyal to was acquired, she took it has an opportunity to dedicated the focus of helping people grow and be better with her presence by dedicating her time to being a compassionate mother to her two daughters, four stepchildren and her husband of 8 years. Over that time, she moved to Puerto Rico, Florida, and back to Rhode Island before choosing to move to Youngstown. It was that choice that led her to Burgan Real Estate.

When she was looking for a home in the Youngstown area, she encountered a real estate agent with another brokerage who told her that she would be a great Realtor®. Ashley was excited about the idea but wanted to join a company that not only shared the same passion of being a part of an experience, from start to finish, that makes someone else better but also a place that valued mentorship with access to marketing resources. The agent not only sold her a house but sold her on not joining her agency but the Burgan Bunch instead.

"Ashley is living a life that is a perfect example of what makes our area so special," said Patrick Burgan, co-owner and broker at Burgan Real Estate. "She could've chosen anywhere but she chose Youngstown to raise her family and her career. Her character and talents are the perfect fit to our Burgan Bunch, and we are excited to have her in our family."

Ashley is fully committed to building success in real estate as she did with her previous career. However, when she's not focused on finding better homes for people, she can be found cooking with her daughters in her spare time and playing with her two pit bulls, Lilo and Stitch. If you have trouble finding her in public, she is not hard to spot as she continues to support her Boston sports teams at every opportunity. Her new career in real estate will be something she knows will be demanding and challenging, but, with her family by her side, she looks forward to being a positive addition to the community and company she now calls, "Home."

"I have always done well in dealing with people and the public. When I moved to Youngstown, I wanted to be with a company that had a culture that was excited to be where they were, that took pride in helping people find a better home and was dedicated to making their employees successful in their careers and personal lives," said Montalvo. "After talking to Patrick (Burgan) I knew the opportunity with Burgan Real Estate was exactly what I was looking for in a career and a company. I have found a new home for my family and a career in Youngstown, and I can't wait to share my story to help others find the same as a Realtor® with Burgan Real Estate."

Welcome to Youngstown and Burgan Real Estate, Ashley. The globe may have stopped here for you to make your home, but it is just the beginning of an amazing career together!

About Burgan Real Estate
Burgan Real Estate has been a leader in the real estate industry in the Mahoning Valley for the past 42 years. By maintaining high standards of integrity, honesty, and transparency, Burgan has thrived and grown into one of the area's and region's most successful independent brokerages. As a second generation, locally owned business, Burgan Real Estate takes great pride in supporting the community it proudly calls "home." To see why life is Better with Burgan, visit or connect on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.


I love a good candy bar just as much as the next person, so the thought of trick or treating being put on hold because of Covid-19 has me looking for a Snickers®. This year has been a little too heavily favored in the "trick" category for my taste.

With everyday feeling like Halloween as people run around in masks, we definitely deserve some treats, and I'm not talking about a few pennies or an apple and a toothbrush. I'm talking about a stash of candy that when you open the bag, an aroma of sugary goodness bellows into your face, instantly causing you to close your eyes and smile from the confectionary cloud you just absorbed. You can smell the sugar already can't you?

Just like with everything else this year, we've had to "pivot" in order to enjoy the normal things in life and Halloween should not be the same. So, if you're wondering how to safely handle the ghouls and ghosts looking for gummy goodies, here are three different ways your neighborhood can celebrate Halloween. Oh, one thing, no matter which option you look at using, always remember to wear your protective mask, stay six feet from one another and be sure to wash your hands or use an FDA approved hand sanitizer.

Drive Thru Trick or Treating
Why not? Everything else is drive thru these days! This option, in the opinion of Public Health, is one of the safest methods to leverage for trick or treating. While it removes the walking fun for kids, parents will rejoice. Individuals would not get out of their vehicles. Rather, they would drive to a select home(s)/location(s), chosen by their subdivision or local government, where treats would be distributed by volunteers. Look, it's an option and if your little vampire or witch wants to get some free candy, this is probably the safest, easiest and fastest way to make that happen.

Trunk or Treat
Probably the least appealing option is the Trunk or Treat, because you have to limit this to the state mandate of no more than 10 people to a gathering. In this scenario, you and you closest confidants would host a small, quaint trick or treat day out of the trunk of your cars. Kids would walk to each trunk where an individual will pass out the treats. Look, I'm just giving you the recommended options, I am not calling the shots here.
Old Fashioned, Door-to-Door Trick or Treating
Now this is what I'm talking about! The anticipation of knocking on someone's door, the excitement to see what candy you would get and trying to find out which house gave the best candy this year. THAT is trick or treating.

While guidelines highly recommend all candy be distributed outside by staying 6 feet from one another, at least normalcy in the most abnormal holiday we have is present. If you're one of those houses that like to leave a bowl of candy for the "honor system," let me first say, "Thank You," and, "I'm sorry," for when I was younger. You shouldn't do that this year, unless all of your candy is in individual bags for someone to take one. Did you hear me kids…JUST TAKE ONE!

Though the tricks seemed to have started months ago due to Covid-19, the treats of Halloween can still be done safely in your neighborhood. Observing the state guidelines and your local Public Health tips for conducting a safe and successful Halloween, will ensure every kid will smell the sweet sugary aroma from this spooky ritual.


So that was an interesting Presidential debate…am I right? Like many of you, I sat, watching, hoping that policy and ideals would be discussed, lending insight into the stance for both individuals. But it is 2020…what was I thinking? The chaotic first Presidential debate was very fitting for this year we are having.

Personally, I was hoping the two candidates read my last article and would address their stances on how the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) would impact our communities, a topic I unbiasedly brought to your attention with the last column. Whether you are blue or red, the reality is that in the upcoming election, our great suburban neighborhoods have become targeted for change by some social reformers.

If you need a refresher, go back to my column two weeks ago and read about how we got to where we are. Go ahead….I'll wait.

(cue elevator music)

So what does this all mean? From my perspective, reenacting AFFH would have a negative impact on our neighborhoods.

Ending of Single-Family Zoning
If reenacted, AFFH could bring an end to single-family zoning (IE: a single family home) creating "little downtowns" in the suburbs. While this sounds "cool" to the younger, Millennial constituents, by doing this, suburbs could lose the ability to govern themselves, bringing an end to local control and the end to YOUR freedom of choice in how YOU choose to live. It could also mean lower home property values, impacting the value of the biggest asset of most Americans. Lastly, at a time when a pandemic is having many rethink mass, city living due to safe social distancing recommendations, AFFH would eradicate your choice of a responsible, safe, alternative lifestyle a suburban setting offers during this pandemic scare.

Swallowed Up by City Life
Another byproduct of this extension of the AFFH is the expansion of city control over the suburbs. Suburbs could not only lose their independence, but their tax dollars as well. Suburban schools, safety forces, and infrastructure could suffer as a portion of tax dollars would likely be redirected toward cities. Single family neighborhoods could be replaced with high-density, low-income/affordable housing as suburbs are forced to rely on HUD grants and their mandates to survive.

Impact on Transportation
While the grants given to suburbs for development would be restricted unless they build what they are told to build, restrictions will even extend to transportation funding. Grants to build and repair our highways and roads could be held up if suburbs do not comply, not only deteriorating our infrastructure, but creating small, satellite cities relying on mass transportation instead of the suburbs you live in now. All of this promoting mass living and transportation over freedom and solidarity in your homes or vehicles.

Our suburbs are a perfect example of the beauty that is America, offering all people the freedom to choose where and how they live, as well as the people who govern them. Now, that freedom, like so many others, are looking to be reimagined. Educate yourself on all of the issues that are at stake during this election and realize that your vote matters.

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