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DSC02889RISMEDIA, October 16, 2013–The Eastern Bergen County Board of REALTORS® Global Business Council recently celebrated Hispanic Heritage Month with “A Salute to Hispanic REALTORS® and Homeowners in Bergen County” at La Havana 59 in Moonachie.

The accelerated growth rate of Hispanic homeownership reported in current Census statistics is evidence of the importance of the Latino community in the housing recovery. There are 155,067 Hispanic homeowners in New Jersey. 14.5 percent of Bergen County residents identify themselves as Latin or Hispanic.

EBCBOR First-Vice President, Jorge Ledesma Broker-Associate with RE/MAX Quality Homes hosted an interactive afternoon forum featuring an array of industry professionals. Ledesma said, “With a bilingual and multi-cultural demographic enjoying exponential growth in NJ, our Global Business Council felt it crucial for REALTORS® to have a keen understanding of the needs of these clients.”

CEO and Founder of Vanguard Comm., an advertising and marketing agency focusing on multicultural clients, Esther Novak, explained how REALTORS® can use changing demographics and unique cultural needs to aid in their marketing to the local Hispanic population.  In her presentation Novak indicated that, “In 2012, 51 percent of the total net increase of owner households was Hispanic.”

A panel of industry professionals representing the four key areas of the real estate transaction discussed the pivotal issues facing Hispanic consumers in the current market. Topics included Multi-generational housing needs, issues related to short sales and foreclosure, and the impact of bad credit and credit repair options.  The panel included the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAREP) Number 4 Top Producing REALTOR® of 2013, Broker of Century 21 JR Gold Team Realty- Johnny Rojas, Attorney Melissa Suarez, All American Mortgage Senior Loan Originator- Norberto Maldonado and Owner of the State Farm- Capellan Agency Carlos Capellan.