The face of Passion, Experience & Intergrity

Tom Hosack

Tom Hosack - CEO/President, Northwood Realty Services

A native of Western PA, Tom was born and raised in Pittsburgh and is a graduate of Virginia Tech with a degree in Marketing Management.

Tom began his real estate career with Hosack/BH&G which later became Century 21 West Penn, LLC. As President of C21 West Penn, LLC, Tom was responsible for the growth and development of one of the largest C21 companies in the country.

In 2002, C21 West Penn merged with Northwood Realty Services and Tom was appointed Chief Operating Officer. In January 2007, Tom became President of Northwood. As president and part owner of the company, he oversees the daily operations and growth of its 35 sales offices and 9 departments in Western Pennsylvania and Eastern Ohio.

Prior to his entry into real estate, Tom was the principal owner of a general contracting firm. In addition to Northwood, he also owns several development companies.

Tom has always been an active member of the Realtors Association of Metropolitan Pittsburgh (R.A.M.P.) and is also on the Board of Directors for the West Penn Multi-List.

Tom and his wife Michelle have three children, a son and two daughters, and live in the North Hills of Pittsburgh. They are very active members of their church.

Despite Slow First Quarter, Residential Real Estate Market Still Looks Positive In Western PA

Despite Slow First Quarter, Residential Real Estate Market Still Looks Positive In Western PA

Plan on a strong year for the local real estate market in Western Pennsylvania, even though the first quarter was slightly slow. At Northwood Realty Services, we are constantly assessing conditions that indicate what we can expect to happen in the market. In April, I provided an analysis of the first quarter and took a look ahead for the rest of 2016.  Here are highlights:

  • While real estate sales in Western PA were down slightly in the first quarter 2016 over last year, we believe mortgage rates will continue to stay relatively low. We see that as a positive factor for the rest of the year.

  • We estimate two .25% rate increases by the Federal Reserve this year, most likely coming in June and late fall.  Slight rate increases often motivate people to buy more quickly, as they don’t want to lose an opportunity for a good rate. 

  • We also see indicators of positive wage growth, which is a huge component of real estate sales. Combining higher wages with a reduction in gas prices means people have more income to spend on housing. 

  • Home prices in the market continue to remain stable and are very affordable, based on ratio of price to local income. 

  • Higher priced homes saw a decline in sales during the first quarter of 2016, but we expect more demand in the luxury home market by the second quarter.  

  • Given all these factors, we project that the region’s overall home sales will be up about 5% over last year in the second quarter.  

Read the full press release here.

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New Year - New Career

Last year, we hosted an event to introduce five of our Northwood Moms to an amazing group of mom bloggers through The We had such positive conversations that night, and the bloggers continued to inspire us by recapping what they discussed about balancing career and motherhood.

In the spirit of a ""new year - new career," we reconnected with these amazing moms to share some tips for their followers who may be interested in exploring a real estate career. Some of our agents have talked about how daunting it was to take the first step, and we figured the mom bloggers may have some helpful insights from their own work/life experiences.

Of course these dynamo moms didn’t disappoint. Their posts speak from the heart about the choices they’ve made in career and motherhood:

" can be difficult to know what to expect and how to succeed, especially if you re-enter the workforce after becoming a mom."
- Heather, Diary of a First Time Mom

Having hard set goals, envisioning them and then finally achieving them is the only way to go about success.
- Maria, Adventures of the Mommy Homemaker

All-in-all it made me realize that while I needed a break to re-energize, I was doing the very best I could.
- Muffy, Brown Mamas

The bottom line is this, just because you might choose to stay at home with your children, you don’t have to lose your identity. You can be a mother as well as a successful businesswoman.
- Rachel, Third Stop on the Right

These moms also reinforced something we’ve known all along: Moms are great employees. Their comments make us extra proud to know that we are a company that really means it when we say "Moms Welcome" at Northwood!

Employers that help women be both amazing mothers and amazing employees are rewarded with the retention, rather than loss, of talent.
- Brynne, Femme Frugality

"Who better to practice patience and grace under pressure than moms?"
- Kelly, Pgh Momtourage

For companies looking to protect profitability and morale by retaining valuable employees and reducing turnover, a policy of flexibility shouldn’t come with strings attached.
- The Motherhood, Work Life Balance

Chaton’s post may have summed it up best about how we operate at Northwood:

"Moms Welcome" is a refreshing slogan that promises that working moms are part of the plan and not an afterthought.
- Chaton, Chaton’s World

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Why 2016 Will Be a Great Year for Local Real Estate

Every year, I spend some time in January to reflect on what we can learn from the previous year and what we can expect for the New Year in the local real estate market. In a recent press release), I was happy to report that 2016 is shaping up to be one of the best years yet for the market. My forecast calls out key factors that paint a positive picture:

  1. We have a stable local economy. While we’ve seen some slowing in the energy industry locally, technology companies are continuing to move in. In fact, the Huffington Post just cited in “Top 10 Cities Techies Should Consider Moving to In 2016.
  2. Interest rates will remain historically low, even if we experience a few modest rate hikes this year. Low interest rates mean that homebuyers in 2016 will have significantly more buying power.
  3. Increase in Wages: As unemployment – and underemployment -- drops locally, it will force employers to give raises they may have been holding back. Greater earnings enable employees to afford a more expensive home.
  4. Higher confidence in the market among buyers translates into a higher comfort level for investing in a larger home.
  5. We’re also expecting an ease in credit restrictions. As lenders get more comfortable with increased government regulation, they’ll broaden their lending profile criteria.
  6. Since 2016 is a presidential election year, we may see some increased federal government spending, which buoys consumer confidence and also puts a few more dollars in consumers’ pockets.
  7. Some stock market worries about foreign economies and fears about low oil prices are actually good for the average homeowner. Lower energy costs mean more disposable dollars and international concerns may mean that the Fed will probably be slower with any rate hikes, which would keep mortgage rates low.

If you are thinking about moving in the near future, you should consider buying in 2016 so you can get a more expensive home for a lower payment. If you wait to purchase until next year or later when rates are higher, you may end up buying less house for the same amount of payment.

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Moms Make Superstar Real Estate Agents

Many of our most successful agents have something in common: they are moms. When you think about it, the traits of a great mom are the same characteristics that make up a superstar real estate agent. Moms are smart, compassionate, savvy multi-taskers who genuinely care about helping others. They know how to make things happen! For a mom looking to re-enter the workforce, becoming a real estate agent is an ideal option.

Our mom agents say that a career in real estate allows them to combine a flexible schedule with unlimited income potential, so they can adjust their own work/life balance. We love helping moms pursue this career option, so earlier this year we started a “Moms Welcome” initiative at Northwood.

To help kick it off, we invited 10 mom bloggers from western Pennsylvania and eastern Ohio to meet with five of our Northwood Moms. Over some snacks and desserts, the bloggers and Northwood moms got to know each other by trading stories about balancing career and motherhood. Our moms shared their experiences of being a real estate agent while maintaining hectic family lives. The conversations were full of helpful tips and plenty of funny antidotes ("…and how big is your laundry pile?"). The bloggers later posted highlights about what they gained from the discussions.

Are you a mom thinking of a career outside of the home? Take a look at what these mom bloggers discussed with our Northwood moms. Their shared insights about balancing life, family and a real estate profession just might encourage you to explore a new career option!

"Beautiful conversation about what it's REALLY like trying to balance career and motherhood. Go be inspired before you dig into your week, mommas!"
- Brynne, Femme Frugality

"…it was encouraging to see a bunch a smiling working moms who actually like their jobs and believe that it makes them better."
- Chaton, Chaton’s World

"We talked shop: motherhood, life, jobs, and how to make it all work as Northwood for Moms really know and experience the truest level of letting life come together…"
- Dana, Lavishly Living Life Out Loud

"The number one tip–set up a support system. Recruit family and friends to your super team instead of exhausting yourself trying to be a super woman."
- Heather, Diary of a First Time Mom

"The top two reasons they all agreed that it was the best job EVER? Flexibility + the sky is the limit on your salary!"
- Kelly, Pgh Momtourage

"We all learned some valuable lessons throughout our conversations. These women truly understand the sacrifice that all moms and women make to achieve theirs and their family’s goals."
- Maria, Adventures of the Mommy Homemaker

"Hearing her made me think about the little things we do daily in our careers, homes and with our families that pass the legacy of good living down to our children."
- Muffy, Brown Mamas

"They spoke with so much passion when they shared their reasons for joining Northwood Realty. The one thing that was a constant in the conversation was the way they were treated, and how the company understood moms."
- Nicole, Champagne to Crayons

"Northwood doesn’t just accept that some women happen to become moms, but instead specifically recruits moms to become part of their team. With an acute appreciation that working moms are extremely organized, loyal, and driven, Northwood has really hit the mark with their corporate culture."
- Nicole, Mediterranean Baby

"This road of motherhood is hard and we can’t do it alone. We all need a hand every now and again, and lets look no further than our fellow moms!"
- Rachel, Third Stop on the Right

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