Cdn Housing Starts down…

January 9th, 2014

Always good info from BC Real Estate Assoc – watch my blog for thoughts on 2013 and the future into 2014 on Victoria, BC housing market…..new project in James Bay just announced.  Jawl & Concert Properties – what a powerhouse combo!

 

BCREA ECONOMICS NOW

Canadian Housing Starts – January 9, 2014

Canadian housing starts declined in December from 197,797 units at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) to 189,672 units SAAR. A decline of 4.2 per cent.  The trend in Canadian new home construction also declined slightly to 195,760 units SAAR over the past six months, a rate that is slightly higher than demographic demand suggests is needed.  For all of 2013, Canadian housing starts in urban centres were down 12 per cent compared to 2012.

New home construction in BC urban centres increased 14.5 per cent in December to 30,886 units SAAR. A ramp-up in new home construction to end the year pushed total starts for 2013 higher by 1 per cent compared with 2012 at 25,685 units. Single family units finished the year up 8 per cent while multiple unit starts declined 2 per cent.

Looking at census metropolitan areas (CMA) in BC, total starts in the Vancouver CMA jumped 47 per cent year-over-year in December to finish 2013 at 18,696 units, a decline of 1 per cent over last year.  In the Victoria CMA, total starts were nearly quadruple that of December 2012 and finished the year down 1 per cent at 1,685 units. New home construction in the Kelowna CMA were up 59 per cent in December and posted 1,013 total starts in 2013, the first time since the 2008/09 recession that Kelowna new home construction has cleared the 1000 start threshold.   Housing starts also posted large gains in the Abbotsford-Mission CMA in December. New home construction doubled in that area in 2013 at 749 total starts.

For more information, please contact: 

Cameron Muir Brendon Ogmundson
Chief Economist Economist
Direct: 604.742.2780 Direct: 604.742.2796
Mobile: 778.229.1884 Mobile: 604.505.6793
Email: cmuir@bcrea.bc.ca Email: bogmundson@bcrea.bc.ca

BCREA represents 11 member real estate boards and their approximately 18,000 REALTORS® on all provincial issues, providing an extensive communications network, standard forms, economic research and analysis, government relations, applied practice courses and continuing professional education (cpe).

Real estate boards, real estate associations and REALTORS® may reprint this content, provided that credit is given to BCREA by including the following statement: “Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.” BCREA makes no guarantees as to the accuracy or completeness of this information.

To change your email address, subscribe to more BCREA publications or unsubsbribe from this distribution list, click here.

 

Share this mailing with your social network by clicking on the appropriate link:

     

Garden? A rainy day in Victoria BC….

September 7th, 2013

Great ideas for a dryer day!

http://article.homebydesign.com/pages/article/HBD_AUG_13_06/269495/index.html

….dog days of Summer – August 2013

August 28th, 2013
Difficult to believe that summer (as we know it) will be over in a week’s time……..lazy days, children at play, for some of us a happy respite in an interesting locale during the last two months.  Real Estate Sales in Victoria have continued on apace as though summer was not the “traditional” quiet period of some summers past…
 
Indeed, the last 2 quarters have seen robust sales results in our market.  From April 1st it appears that listings are down (11% year over year for single family homes and 18% for condos) and we could be on the edge of a “balanced market” for the first time in a long time.  Brisk activity since that time has led to an increase of sales/listing ratio of 56% in July 2013 over July 2012.  Only 47% of signle family homes listed in July 2012 sold.  
 
Average sale prices for single family homes are only down -2% year over year.  Averages for condos down -7% this year.  But better news on the 6 month average prices:  Single family – holding at .36% higher; condos up 1.22% and townhouses holding at .40% up.  
 
All properties that sold in The Greater Victoria area were on market an average of 76 days in July 2013.  Houses took an average of 57 days to sell; condos took an average of 70 days to sell and townhouses took an average of 83 days to sell.  
 
The British Columbia Real Estate Association has released a 3rd quarter update stating that after a pull back of consumer demand in 2012 (we all know about that) that the market is transitioning toward elevated activity and sales are to increase approximately 3.9% over those of 2012.  I believe this demand is borne out by statistics of the last 5 months.
 
I predict that Sales for August 2013 should be above those of last year – as interest rates slowly rise – there are buyers out there who want to preserve the 140 day rate-hold that they have been promised.
 
Two big qualification changes for insured mortgages (those with less than 20% downpayment) will come into play at the end of December 2013.  In a nutshell, guarantors of mortgages will now have to be on title & qualification calculations will encompass a higher figure for home heating (based on a square footage model) after the end of the year.  Every penny counts and that will be even more the case as we head into 2014.
 
But interest rates are still historically low – still great opportunities in our market as sellers are wending their way to realistic prices and seeing great success as a result!
 
Questions – queries?  That’s what I’m here for……….Vicky    250-217-2313 cell phone
 
 

Cameron Muir – Saavy guy on BC Housing Market….

July 16th, 2013

Sales are moving on apace for July 2013 as well – if numbers keep up my prediction is that we will surpass July 2012 in residential home sales in the Greater Victoria area…….click on the link below to hear “sage” Cameron Muir, Economist with The British Columbia Real Estate Association…..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=emIjVA-rm0Q&feature=c4-overview&list=UUiK9hex2u-kM7UHOXGVboZw

Wow, what a great 2nd Qtr for Real Estate in Victoria!

July 2nd, 2013

Sales for the 2nd quarter of 2013 are up 65% from the 2nd quarter of 2012 – what great news for our market and both buyers and sellers. 

Prices have not risen, but activity has – big time.  27 homes over 1 million sold last month – in a town of 350,000 people?  Yes, true…

Thought you might be interested in the June stats that were just published by our Board today – impressive gains in activity in the 2nd quarter of this year.  Prices are not necessarily up but the buyers are buying…..I would be happy to answer any queries you might have.  Vicky

 


From: Maggie Kerr-Southin [mailto:mkerrsouthin@vreb.org]
Sent: July 2, 2013 12:26 PM
To: undisclosed-recipients:
Subject: GREATER VICTORIA REAL ESTATE MARKET REBOUNDS IN SECOND QUARTER

 

SENT TO:              VREB MANAGING BROKERS

                                VREB MEMBERS

                                VREB MEMBERS SUPPORT STAFF (upon request)

                                VREB STAFF

 

 

MEDIA RELEASE

 

July 2, 2013

 

GREATER VICTORIA REAL ESTATE MARKET REBOUNDS IN SECOND QUARTER

 

VICTORIA, BC–For the third consecutive month, the Victoria Real Estate Board reports sales through the MLS® System remained strong with 65% more activity in the current quarter than in the first quarter of 2013.

 

“With 664 sales this month, and 1,938 sales this quarter, the market is definitely rebounding,” says President Shelley Mann. “We are now headed into the quieter summer months, so I’m interested to see where this leads.”

 

There were 382 single family homes sold in June at a median price of $525,250, up 1% over June 2012 at $520,000. Condominium sales were 164 at a median price of $265,000 and 79 townhomes sold at a median price of $365,000. There were 4,833 active listings on the MLS® System at the end of June, bringing the active-listings-to-sales ratio to 17%, well within the balanced market range.

 

“While sales are up, prices remain flat,” Mann says. “It is more important than ever to focus on the median prices. With six family home sales between $2 million and $7 million in June, the average price was pulled higher. The median price – the middle price – remained stable.”

 

Mann also advises buyers to consider long-term mortgages as she is hearing that long-term rates are starting to increase and lenders are providing fewer discounts on posted interest rates.

 

Total Waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold:                     18, up two over June 2012

Total Non-waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold:          364, up 10 over June 2012

Single Family Dwellings sold over $1 million:                         27 (6 over $2 million)

 

While the use of average price information can be useful in establishing trends when applied over a period of time, e.g. six months or longer, the Victoria Real Estate Board cautions that an average price does not indicate the actual value of a property in a particular neighbourhood. Those requiring specific information on property values in their area should contact a REALTOR®. The Victoria Real Estate Board has 1,230 Members.

 

- 30 –

 

Maggie Kerr-Southin APR
Manager, Communications, Victoria Real Estate Board
Direct Phone: 250.920.4652;  Email: mkerrsouthin@vreb.org

 

 

June 2013, MLS® Real Estate Sales, and Average and Median Prices, Greater Victoria

 

 

2013 – June

2013 – May

2012 – June

 

No of Sales

Average
Price $

Median
Price $

No of Sales

Average
Price $

Median
Price $

No of Sales

Average Price $

Median Price $

SFD Gr. Victoria

359

635,161

529,900

346

565,763

524,896

336

$591,464

$530,000

SFD Other Areas

23

558,190

390,000

38

503,553

357,000

34

$472,772

$420,000

Total SFD All Areas

382

630,527

525,250

384

559,607

515,000

370

$580,557

$520,000

Condos

164

306,862

265,000

142

318,017

289,500

158

$316,569

$266,750

Townhomes

79

417,687

365,000

68

432,233

400,000

58

$441,883

$392,800

Mfd. Homes

17

112,559

110,000

18

107,861

87,250

16

$155,413

$121,500

TOTAL RESIDENTIAL

642

 

 

612

 

 

602

 

 

TOTAL SALES

664

 

 

659

 

 

637

 

 

ACTIVE LISTINGS

4,833

 

 

4,783

 

 

5,189

 

 

SFD = Single-family Dwelling

 

June 2013, MLS® Real Estate Sales and Six-Month Average Prices over May 2013

 

* All Areas includes Shawnigan Lake/Malahat, Gulf Islands and Up Island.

 

 

 

Maggie Kerr-Southin APR, Manager, Communications, Victoria Real Estate Board
3035 Nanaimo Street, Victoria BC V8T 4W2 – Direct Phone: 250.920.4652 – www.vreb.org

 

 

Is bigger necessarily better?

June 27th, 2013

I ran across this blog post today by a guy in The States….wanted to share it with you.  I have been noticing a trend at open houses lately – downsizers really do want to “downsize” – the days seem to be disappearing where those who leave a large, single family home are happy moving into a property that might be equally as large but in a strata (condo or townhouse).  Today’s downsizers are looking for somewhere between 1200 – 1600 square feet with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and perhaps a den.  Or, if strata living is not for them, a rancher of around 1,300 square feet or so often fits the bill…..

 
Perhaps there is becoming a point that we realize that being an “acquirer” (is that a word?) is not giving us the same kick as it used to?  Have you ever rented or visited at a furnished condo on a holiday?  There is an “aha” moment when you might start to think that having 6 plates, 6 wine glasses (OK maybe not wineglasses) is not so bad?  Is locking your door and heading out to explore without worrying about the chores of managing a larger home seem like a reasonable idea? Our children don’t want our stuff (the only things they seem to want are the things we want to keep…).  
 
Footloose & fancy free – you choose!  A very happy Canada Day Weekend to all,  Vicky
 

by joshua becker

Recently, my parents bought a smaller house. And this past week, while on vacation in South Dakota (yeah, I vacation in South Dakota), I got to see it for the first time. During our stay, I was surprised at how often my mother commented that “they just love their smaller house.” I wasn’t so much surprised that she felt that way (I am a minimalist after all), but I was surprised at the frequency. It was a comment that she repeated over and over again during our one-week stay.

Toward the end of the week, I sat down with my mom and asked her to list all of the reasons why she is experiencing more happiness in her smaller house. And this post was written… my first post co-authored with my mother.

12 Reasons Why You’ll Be Happier in a Smaller House by Joshua and Patty Becker (I get top billing because it is my blog).

People buy larger homes for a number of reasons:

  • They “outgrow” their smaller one.
  • They receive a promotion and raise at work.
  • They are convinced by a realtor that they can afford it.
  • They hope to impress others.
  • They think a large home is the home of their dreams.

Another reason people keep buying bigger and bigger homes is because no one tells them not to. The mantra of the culture again comes calling, “buy as much and as big as possible.” They believe the lie and choose to buy a large home only because that’s ”what you are supposed to do” when you start making money… you buy nice, big stuff.

Nobody ever tells them not to. Nobody gives them permission to pursue smaller, rather than larger. Nobody gives them the reasons they may actually be happier in a smaller house.

So, in an attempt to break the silence, consider these 12 reasons why you’ll actually be happier in a smaller house:

  1. Easier to maintain. Anyone who has owned a house knows the amount of time, energy, and effort to maintain it. All things being equal, a smaller home requires less of your time, energy, and effort to accomplish that task.
  2. Less time spent cleaning. And that should be reason enough…
  3. Less expensive. Smaller homes are less expensive to purchase and less expensive to keep (insurance, taxes, heating, cooling, electricity, etc.).
  4. Less debt and less risk. Dozens of on-line calculators will help you determine “how much house you can afford.” These formulas are based on net income, savings, current debt, and monthly mortgage payments. They are also based on the premise that we should spend ”28% of our net income on our monthly mortgage payments.” But if we can be more financially stable and happier by only spending 15%… then why would we ever choose to spend 28?
  5. Mentally Freeing. As is the case with all of our possessions, the more we own, the more they own us. And the more stuff we own, the more mental energy is held hostage by them. The same is absolutely true with our largest, most valuable asset. Buy small and free your mind.
  6. Less environmental impact. A smaller home requires less resources to build and less resources to maintain. And that benefits all of us.
  7. More time. Many of the benefits above (less cleaning, less maintaining, mental freedom) result in the freeing up of our schedule to pursue the things in life that really matter – whatever you want that to be.
  8. Encourages family bonding. A smaller home results in more social interaction among the members of the family. And while this may be the reason that some people purchase bigger homes, I think just the opposite should be true.
  9. Forces you to remove baggage. Moving into a smaller home forces you to intentionally pare down your belongings.
  10. Less temptation to accumulate. If you don’t have any room in your house for that new treadmill, you’ll be less tempted to buy it in the first place (no offense to those of you who own a treadmill… and actually use it).
  11. Less decorating. While some people love the idea of choosing wall color, carpet color, furniture, window treatments, decorations, and light fixtures for dozens of rooms, I don’t.
  12. Wider market to sell. By its very definition, a smaller, more affordable house is affordable to a larger percentage of the population than a more expensive, less affordable one.

 

 

How are we doing to date in 2013? (real estate market)

June 10th, 2013
The spring quarter (April and May 2013 so far)….has proved a different story from the previous 6-8 months since lending rules were modificed by the Government early last summer.
 
We realtors are actually writing more offers than at any time in the past few months.  Financing continues to be tricky (for buyers with insured mortgages) with tons of additional questions asked by the insurers of mortages of less than 20% downpayment…..very picky – more so than we have seen in years……but as you have probably all read about, mortgage rates continue to be a bargain and buyers are putting pen to paper – finally.
 
Sales are up (in April & May 2013), prices are down.  Sellers who “get that” continue to be successful with a good number of sales taking place right out of the gate.  I had one competatively priced listing in May, held offers for 2 days, had 35 showings, 8 offers and it sold 37k over list price.  Tricky but obviously a correct analysis of the market situation here and it worked.
 
But, and there always is a but, it was mentioned that unit sales across the board are down 9% from 2012 in the Greater Victoria area…….other stats that may be of interest:
 
GENERAL STATS FOR FIRST 5 MONTHS OF 2013 IN GREATER VICTORIA AREA: (all types of real estate)
 
# if  units listed:    -12% from 2012 (should provide for more balanced market)
# of units sold:      -9% from 2012
Sales Dollars:         -11% from 2012 ($ generated by real estate sales)
Average price per unit sold:      -3% for 2012
Price ratio:  Unchanged year over year – properties selling at 97% of list price
Days to sell:  On market an average of 17% longer than last year
 
 

Financial update from Prime Mortgage Works Ltd.

May 30th, 2013

Weekly financing update from a trusted source – Callum Greig from Prime Mortgage Works in Victoria, BC – Callum can be contacted at 250-580-5626.

There is absolutely no reason for buyers not to make a move in this extremely favourable lending climate – bargains are out there – take the plunge and enjoy the results!

Good Morning,

As the Spring Market continues we are seeing the “proof in the pudding” as far as the most recent mortgage rule changes have had on both resales and a clients’ ability to refinance their mortgage. CMHC released a quarterly report this morning and truly the number reinforce what we are already feeling in the marketplace.

* CMHC wrote $8.2M of mortgage insurance in the Q1 of this year, compared to $19B in Q1 2012

* This decline is partially due to the government forcing CMHC to reduce the amount of bulk insurance (low ratio) they provide the banks

* CMHC Arrears rate remains very strong at a mere .35% (AKA Canadians pay their mortgages)

* Total insured mortgages by CMHC has dropped 54% from Q1 in 2012

* CMHC total Insurance in Force is $562.5 Billion Dollars (a decrease from the end of 2012 by $3.5B)

This news would appear to be what Minister Flaherty ordered as far as a restraining of the housing market. Further evidence of needing to continue this path came yesterday as the Bank of Canada kept interest rates put yesterday, analysts now predicting an increase in mid to late 2015. With Prime Rate possbily held until 2015, Variable Rate mortgages may find their way back en vogue though again under the new mortgage rules, are much more difficult to qualify for.

Finally, as hinted the last couple of weeks, FIXED Rates are rising this week some 5-10 Bps though are likely to float back down in the near future once more challenging economic realities come to light in Japan, China and the continued discord in the European Union.

For the most up to date rates, visit: http://www.primemortgageworks.com/our-rates

FINANCIAL UPDATE

 *   TSX  -17.90 to 12,732.61
 *   DOW -106.59 to 13,302.80
 *   Dollar -.0001 to 96.39
 *   Oil -0.64 to 92.49
 *   Gold +7.10 to 1398.90

*these numbers have been taken from  www.tmxmoney.com<http://www.tmxmoney.com>  at 8:00 AM EST

Canadian 5 year bond yields markets +.001 to 1.48 The spread (based on the 5 year published rate of 3.19%) is WELL BELOW the comfort zone at 1.71  http://www.investing.com/rates-bonds/canada-5-year-bond-yield.

The rate of return on your bond, can be read through a yield curve, If the increase in bond yield continues to go up, the spread will continue to shrink and this could be a trigger for interest rates to rise.  The comfort zone is between 1.90 and 2.10

Callum Greig    
Franchise Owner    
DLC – Prime Mortgage Works Inc.
Office: 250-708-2063
Cell: 250-580-5626
Fax: 1-866-845-8513    
Email: callum@primemortgageworks.com
Website: primemortgageworks.com
Twitter: @primemortgagewx

Finally – it’s about time!

May 1st, 2013

The Greater Victoria Real Estate Board has just manifested the excellent news to all in a press release which is copied below in its’ entirety (with stats afterward…..)

It has been a painful past 6 months to a year in our market.  That trend seems to have dissipated due to the fact that during April 2013 real estate sales exceeded those of April 2012.  That has not been the case of late.  Less listings went on the market and there were less listings on market at month’s end……spring you say?  Perhaps.  But there has obviously been pent up demand.  Again, a caution…….you can not list your property with unrealistic goals, it will be passed by and ignored.  Price realistically and you will have great success.  Times have changed, buyers know that, sellers have to realize that as well.  There have been many instances of multiple offers over the past few weeks – but only for those sellers who “get it”….

May this activity continue – please enjoy the press release below + stats…..

 

GREATER VICTORIA RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE TRANSITIONS TO A BALANCED MARKET

 

VICTORIA, BC–Weighing in on the best monthly sales since April 2010, Shelley Mann, President of the Victoria Real Estate Board is cautiously optimistic that the Greater Victoria is back into a balanced market.

 

“Consumer confidence is increasing,” Mann says. “Our total number of sales for April was 615, a 5% increase compared to April 2012 with 585 sales.  On the residential side, more properties are selling, and slightly fewer are entering the market, so we are moving from a buyers’ market to more balanced market conditions.”

 

Mann cautions that one month doesn’t indicate a market trend, but is encouraged by increased showings by REALTORS®, the number of sales, and comments from other REALTORS® about multiple offers on properties.

 

Prices remained relatively flat, as predicted by Cameron Muir, Chief Economist of the BC Real Estate Association. There were 367 single family homes sold in April at a median price of $540,000, a 16% increase of homes sold over April 2012. Condominium sales were 149 at a median price of $265,000 and with 62 townhomes sold at a median price of $415,450. There were 4,585 listings active at the end of April.

 

Total Waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold:                     15, up 2 over April 2012

Total Non-waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold:          352, up 39 over April 2012

Single Family Dwellings sold over $1 million:                                         30 (5 over $2 million)

 

While the use of average price information can be useful in establishing trends when applied over a period of time, e.g. six months or longer, the Victoria Real Estate Board cautions that an average price does not indicate the actual value of a property in a particular neighbourhood. Those requiring specific information on property values in their area should contact a REALTOR®.

 

- 30 –

 

Stats summaries attached and tables below.

 

Maggie Kerr-Southin APR
Manager, Communications, Victoria Real Estate Board
Direct Phone: 250.920.4652;  Email: mkerrsouthin@vreb.org

 

 

April 2013, MLS® Real Estate Sales and Average Prices, Greater Victoria

 

 

2013 – April

2013 – March

2012 – April

 

No of Sales

Average
Price $

Median
Price $

No of Sales

Average
Price $

Median
Price $

No of Sales

Average Price $

Median Price $

SFD Gr. Victoria

339

652,611

542,150

253

583,886

510,777

294

$609,376

$560,000

SFD Other Areas

28

511,589

483,500

24

543,100

500,000

22

$677,100

$462,500

Total* SFD All Areas

367

641,852

540,000

277

580,353

510,777

316

$614,091

$554,000

Condos

149

292,629

265,000

121

288,310

265,000

171

$327,975

$277,000

Townhomes

62

426,013

415,450

49

422,178

384,450

62

$428,237

$416,250

Mfd. Homes

14

125,571

 

130,250

12

105,083

94,750

16

$125,500

$116,000

TOTAL RESIDENTIAL

592

 

 

459

 

 

565

 

 

TOTAL SALES

615

 

 

483

 

 

586

 

 

ACTIVE LISTINGS

4,585

 

 

4,333

 

 

4,638

 

 

 

SFD = Single-family Dwelling

 

April 2013, MLS® Real Estate Sales and Six-Month Average Prices over March 2013

 

* All Areas includes Shawnigan Lake/Malahat, Gulf Islands and Up Island

 

 

 

Maggie Kerr-Southin APR, Manager, Communications, Victoria Real Estate Board
3035 Nanaimo Street, Victoria BC V8T 4W2 – Direct Phone: 250.920.4652 – www.vreb.org

 

Comments on GDP of US of A…..

April 26th, 2013

According to economists of the British Columbia Real Estate Association they are doing better than we are south of the 49th parallel…..(earlier this week I posted that Canadian GDP is at 1.5….)

BCREA ECONOMICS NOW

US Q1Real GDP Growth - April 26, 2013

The US economy grew 2.5 per cent in the first quarter of 2013, falling short of consensus expectations of 3 per cent. Most of the shortfall in growth was the result of an 11.5 per cent drop in defense spending, which led US government spending lower for the tenth time in the past eleven quarters.  On the positive side, consumer spending posted its largest increase in two years, expanding 3.2 per cent.  

It is worth noting that today’s release is a preliminary estimate and will be revised in subsequent months. The recent trend has been upward revisions and so it is likely that the US economy actually grew at a slightly faster pace than initially estimated. That said, we do expect some weakness in the second and third quarter of this year due to further declines in government spending. However, that weakness should give way to stronger growth later in 2013 and into 2014 when we forecast the US economy will grow at a rate of above 3 per cent.


For more information, please contact: 

Cameron Muir Brendon Ogmundson
Chief Economist Economist
Direct: 604.742.2780 Direct: 604.742.2796
Mobile: 778.229.1884 Mobile: 604.505.6793
Email: cmuir@bcrea.bc.ca Email: bogmundson@bcrea.bc.ca

BCREA represents 11 member real estate boards and their approximately 18,000 REALTORS® on all provincial issues, providing an extensive communications network, standard forms, economic research and analysis, government relations, applied practice courses and continuing professional education (cpe).

Real estate boards, real estate associations and REALTORS® may reprint this content, provided that credit is given to BCREA by including the following statement: “Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.” BCREA makes no guarantees as to the accuracy or completeness of this information.

To change your email address, subscribe to more BCREA publications or unsubsbribe from this distribution list, click here.

Share this mailing with your social network by clicking on the appropriate link:

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