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    Dorota Dyman & Associates Real Estate: Real estate fraud seminar coming to Hamilton


    Back in the heyday of the Bitterroot Valley’s housing boom, Bitterroot Valley appraiser Darwin Ernst said one local mortgage broker used to say: “You show us the house, we’ll show you the money.”

    Real estate fraud was more common than people realize, Ernst said.

    “In some cases, people just didn’t know,” he said.

    During the housing boom, the valley had about 10 unlicensed mortgage brokers. Today, two licensed brokers remain in business.

    Inflated home prices, creative financing, and misrepresentations on loan documents weren’t issues that just happened somewhere else in the country, Ernst said.

    New regulatory requirements that followed the housing market bust has changed the way people do business.
    A two-day seminar on real estate fraud coming to Hamilton Monday is designed to help real estate agents, appraisers and lenders avoid the pitfalls of becoming an unsuspecting participant in mortgage fraud, Ernst said.

    The seminar is hosted by the Bitterroot Valley Board of Realtors. It will be held at the Bitterroot River Inn on Monday and Tuesday, Nov. 18 and 19.

    The first day focuses entirely on the kind of scams that can occur in real estate transactions and how to avoid them.

    The second day is set aside for appraisers to consider issues of adjustments, independence and mandatory reporting requirements.

    Anyone interested in attending the seminar can call the Bitterroot Valley Board of Realtors at 363-2000 to register.
    The same seminar attracted nearly 200 in Missoula last month.

    Ernst spent close to a year helping to design the course, which focuses on issues specific to Montana’s real estate market.

    The course will examine 20 common frauds that occur during the purchase and financing of real estate transactions.

    Nationally known fraud profiler Richard Hager will teach the course.

    Hager will examine several actual real estate and mortgage fraud cases. He will point out the failures of the sellers, buyers, real estate agents, appraisers, mortgage loan originators and lenders.

    And he’ll explain how their actions violated state and federal laws.

    “On a daily basis, real estate professionals violate numerous laws, often without knowing it,” Hager said in a press release. “The course is designed to provide the basic education for real estate agents, appraisers and loan originators, attorneys and consumers regarding real estate fraud, ethics and the law.”

    Ernst said the very same pressures that led to widespread fraud in the housing market that helped collapse the country’s economy is already beginning to well up again in some markets.

    “We are seeing rapid 10 to 15 percent increases in the housing market in some major cities,” he said.

    Those rapid increases and the potential for making lots of money can drive people to commit fraud.

    “A person shouldn’t get into a house that they can’t afford,” he said. “We don’t want to see any more foreclosures. ... These classes are designed to help people fix the problem so it doesn’t happen again.”

    Layna Lyons, executive officer for the Bitterroot Valley Board of Realtors, said everyone is invited to attend the course, which will offer education credits for Realtors and appraisers.

    “It should be a good course,” she said. “This is the first time that we’ve ever offered classes for Realtors and appraisers for credit.”

    With the new regulations that followed the national economic downturn, Lyons said it’s important that people understand the potential for fraud.

    “People can get into a problem and not even realize they are doing something wrong,” she said. “I think this is going to be a great class for a lot of different people. We want everyone to know what fraud is.”

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    Dorota Dyman & Associates Real Estate Kweichow Moutai to buy Paris Real Estate

    Domestic high-end baijiu (white liquor) producer Kweichow Moutai Co Ltd announced Tuesday that it will invest 8.79 million euros ($11.76 million) to buy real estate property in Paris to help further its business in Europe.

    This is part of Moutai's globalization strategy, Yang Qing­shan, executive president of the China Brand Strategy Association, told the Global Times Tuesday.

    Currently, Moutai has a wide market including Asia, Europe, America, Oceania and South Africa, China Securities Journal reported Tuesday, noting that with such a wide global sales network, Moutai exported almost 1,000 tons of baijiu in 2012, accounting for only 4 percent of the total output of 24,999 tons.

    These overseas exports brought in revenue of $175 million, an increase of 60 percent from 2011.

    Centerville Real Estate Developers Guilty of Fraud

    Hong Kong-based Silver Base Group Holdings Ltd obtained the distribution rights of Moutai in Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Bulgaria starting from January 1, 2013, Silver Base Group announced on its website on March 11.

    However, Moutai's revenue from markets outside of the Chinese mainland is still quite small.

    The revenue from overseas markets for the first half of 2013 is 382 million yuan ($62.72 million), only 2.71 percent of its total revenue, according to Moutai's mid-year report released on August 31 on the website of the Shanghai Stock Exchange.

    The majority of exported Moutai baijiu is bought by Chinese who work in or have immigrated to foreign countries, Yang said, noting that Moutai is confronted with a great challenge if the company wants to promote its baijiu products to non-Chinese customers.

    Unlike other liquor that Western consumers are familiar with such as vodka, Moutai baijiu is much stronger, Yang said, noting each 100 milliliters (ml) of vodka contains about 40 ml alcohol, but each 100 ml of Moutai baijiu includes about 50 ml alcohol.

    In addition to higher alcohol content, due to different brewing technology, Moutai baijiu has a unique taste which new customers will need time to get used to, Yang said.

    Although it is hard for Moutai to attract non-Chinese customers, going global is an inevitable choice for enterprises, Ma Wenfeng, an analyst with Beijing Orient Agribusiness Consultant Ltd, told the Global Times Tuesday.

    The sluggish domestic market has also encouraged liquor producers to explore new markets, Yang said, noting Moutai is not the only one.

    Tang Qiao, chairman of Wuliangye Group, also a baijiu producer, will go to the UK from November 19 to 23 and meet with Diageo, according to media reports. But both sides denied specific cooperation plans, according to media reports.

    The UK liquor producer Diageo acquired Chinese baijiu producer Sichuan Swellfun Co in 2012.

    China's liquor market, especially the high-end sector, has been cooling down since the central government launched an anti-extravagance campaign early this year.

    The total revenue of 13 listed Chinese baijiu enterprises in the first three quarters dropped 3.17 percent year-on-year, and the total net profit decreased 6.33 percent year-on-year, news portal reported Monday, noting it is the first time the industry has experienced falling profits in nine years.

    In addition to baijiu, Moutai is also trying to develop its wine brand Moutai Wine, which Moutai set up a joint venture in 2002 to produce.

    Moutai has bought French wine estates including Chateau Dallau in 2012 and Chateau Loudenne in May this year, Moutai's website said on May 24.

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