NAR IS PROPOSING A $40 INCREASE TO OUR DUES

By
Real Estate Agent with Re/Max Professional Associates 74203

The proposed increase is for them to raise 80 million dollars for their political action committee.  This is a 50% increase in national dues.  If memory serves me right NAR membership is down almost 25% from their highs of a few years ago.  There is a reason for the loss of membership.  Business is down.  They keep reporting on the loss of sales volume.  Yet they are proposing this kind of increase.  Are we going to be like the teachers union and be forced to watch our dues support candidates that we would never vote for never mind send money to their campaigns?

I believe it is the duty of organizations like NAR to help their membership during the hard times by holding the line on dues.  I believe their intentions might be good but the road to hell is paved with good intentions.  I have been a Realtor for 30+ years.  I have seen the good, the bad and the ugly moments. 

I sell real estate in Massachusetts where our MLS is Realtor owned not board owned.  This means that you don't have to be a Realtor to belong to MLS-PIN.  We have seen many Realtors drop their membership in order to keep their costs down.  Yet they can still promote their listings through MLS.

NAR needs to be relevant in order to thrive and survive.  Why aren't they helping us with the short sale fiasco's that are daily events?  Why haven't they become more active in the BPO controversy?  I have been to NAR conventions to vote on budget issues.  The voting is nothing more than rubber stamping that budget which was decided long before the vote.

NAR you need to be relevant to the survival of your membership.  PAC's are very important but staying in business is more important to the average Realtor.

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Rainmaker
134,415
Paul Francis
Prudential Americana Group - REALTORS - Las Vegas, NV
Las Vegas Real Estate - Summerlin Homes - 702.592.

@ Raiza,

"I feel that if a person uses a service, they need to pay for that service.  It's like college tuition, you have an increase every few years, but it benefits the community as a whole."

Care to share how well the money has been spent in the past decade?

Sorry... but I guess what irks me the most is that political contributions were made to the likes of Barney Frank and Chris Dodd... a couple of figures that were instrumental in blocking reform back when something could have been done to keep the mess.... from being such a mess.

Mar 24, 2011 05:09 AM #36
Rainer
75,617
David James
ReMax Real Estate Services Columbia South Carolina - Columbia, SC

NAR is so incredibly out of touch. The largest company in our market has withdrawn from our board.  We now have a choice in Columbia.  NAR better realize that this can happen in other markets and start representing its members.

Mar 24, 2011 05:59 AM #37
Rainmaker
1,055,259
Conrad Allen
Re/Max Professional Associates - Webster, MA
Webster, Ma, Realtor

Well that certainly hit a hot button.  $40 is chump change.  My issue is one of principal not principle.  I am a huge proponent of RPAC.  They fight the good fight on local issues important to all homeowners not just Realtors.  My dog in this fight is not spending money on issues it is spending money on candidates.

Thanks

Mar 24, 2011 06:51 AM #38
Rainmaker
391,947
Tni LeBlanc
Mint Properties, Tni LeBlanc (805) 878-9879 - Santa Maria, CA
JD, MA, REALTOR, CalBRE # 01871795

Hi Conrad,

I like your principled stance.  I do think Phil has a point too, we obviously need protection for the industry, but you struck a nerve mentioning that we are not getting help with some biggies like short sales and BPOs.  And I agree with the fact that the timing is poor -- although I can pay it there are lots of Realtors who are struggling right now.

Tni

Mar 24, 2011 07:02 AM #39
Ambassador
2,392,083
Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

I'm in.  We need the NAR to grease the palms of the corrupt Congress to protect the mortgage interest deduction. 

Knowing how the Congress works, the NAR knows full well that, with the corrupt Congress, money talks. 

The Democrats are going to be making a grab for the mortgage interest deduction.  We need to have enough money in the PAC to buy the votes needed to stop them.

Mar 24, 2011 07:19 AM #40
Rainmaker
850,872
J. Philip Faranda
J. Philip Faranda (J. Philip R.E. LLC) Westchester County NY - Briarcliff Manor, NY
Broker-Owner

@ Paul, #36

Do you think loan officers would be hammered the way they currently are if they had our political advocacy?

Do you like the mortgage interest deduction?

Do you want to keep banks out of real estate brokerage? 

If you get the answer to your question you'll appreciate their value. 

Mar 24, 2011 08:04 AM #41
Rainer
239,935
Michele Miller ~ REALTOR®, LMC, HSE, CHS
Keller Williams Greater Worcester - Worcester, MA
"Your Full Service Professionals"

Wow, Conrad, you started something here!

I can't agree more either!

During these times, everything has gone up except our incomes!

 

Mar 24, 2011 09:10 AM #42
Rainmaker
446,481
Vickie McCartney
Maverick Realty - Owensboro, KY
Broker, Real Estate Agent Owensboro KY

Hi Conrad~  We have to belong to our local board in order to be in the MLS.  So, the way I see it is we really don't have much choice! 

Mar 24, 2011 10:47 AM #43
Rainer
35,985
Carmen V. Rodriguez
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Chicago, IL

I just wrote about this NAR money versus advocacy issue in my blog a short while ago.  There is no excuse for the sloppy, ill-informed and slog-slow stance of our national association since the painful demise of our business begain more than five years ago.  We are still struggling with short-sale and REO procedures, we are still bleeding members with no chance for recovery, we are still battling local MLSs for access to data on fields that matter to buyers, appraisals are a wreck, economic policy is addressing our needs, but at a snail's pace. All of these and more issues are the direct purview of our assocation and the most they can do is blather on about hanging on to the MID for dear life and taking a bus around the country to promote homeownership. What?  Everyone wants to be a homeowner; that's the most ridiculous campaign I've ever heard of.  We don't need to promote homeownership as a CONCEPT, we need to protect it as a REALITY. The real problem, however, is not that NAR isn't listening to its membership or spending our money wisely. I think the real problem is that we rant about it here and then never attend the meetings or answer the surveys or send the letters that NAR needs to get from us to know how we feel.  The last time I went to a NAR meeting to hear what the president-elect had to say, I think it was obvious that he was caught unawares when folks started asking informed, detailed questions about these and other issues.  He wasn't prepared for discourse. He wanted to lay out talking points and have everyone walk away repeating what he said without thinking about it.  That's not going to cut it. But if more of us don't tell him that - there, where he's at, instead of hear where we're at, then we're not going to get the advocacy we need. 

Mar 24, 2011 11:20 AM #44
Anonymous
Anonymous
Jeanne Gregory, RE/MAX Southwest

At the risk of starting something, I think our cost to be Realtors should be way higher than they are now.  It's too easy and cheap for people to jump into and out of the business!  And if we don't have a RPAC, we'll be an easy target for the "no increase in taxes" mentality that is out there looking for something to shoot (ie, sales tax on sales, etc).

Mar 24, 2011 11:21 AM #45
Rainmaker
199,077
Bob Zorechak - ABR, GRI, e-PRO
Keller Williams Realty Metropolitan - Morristown, NJ
Sells Homes in Morris/Somerset/Hunterdon Cos., NJ

Wow, what an interesting series of reponses. Very thought provokng on both sides. Thanks for such a great post.

Mar 24, 2011 11:57 AM #46
Rainmaker
221,731
Chris Sloan
Group 1 Real Estate - Tooele, UT
Tooele Utah Real Estate

Wow, what a great debate. The fact is, as Lenn and others have stated, this is how the "game" is played. Until they change it (probably not soon...) it would be industrial suicide to abandon what we've accomplished over the years politically. MID is obviously important. So are the other issues like Short Sales or BPO's or Appraisal issues. Unfortunately the issues there aren't ones this Association can "control", but only influence. Influence simply takes longer, and requires electing people that "get it", rather than trying to change the mind of those that don't. Doesn't happen overnight. 

But, let's not forget that a bunch of this increase is coming back to the State and local Associations, where changes can be faster, and affect us more on a day to day basis. Here in Utah, we just got done with our legislative session. I can think of two issues we deal with here that I can quantify easily. Defeating a "tax on professional services" saved me, as a Realtor, $180 per transaction side on an average price of 200k. I'd be paying that if we didn't have RPAC in Utah. I can handle $40 more a year.

I'm not always a fan of some things NAR does. But, if they manage to do one thing to keep the feds out of my pocket, I win at the cost I'm paying. 

I'd urge everyone to take some time to see what's done for us by our Associations for the money we pay. If you still think it's not worth the money, call your National Directors. They represent you, and if you don't let them know how you feel, don't complain when they vote for things you don't like. I'm a National Director, and not sure how I'll be voting, but I know my Utah people won't be shy in advising me! Love the discussion!

Mar 24, 2011 12:17 PM #47
Rainmaker
481,155
Ken Tracy
Charles Rutenberg Realty - Naperville - Naperville, IL
Naperville Illinois Real Estate

Hi Conrad.  I am with you!

I hate other people spending my money.  The amount isn't important...

Thanks for writing,

Ken

Mar 24, 2011 02:25 PM #48
Rainmaker
134,415
Paul Francis
Prudential Americana Group - REALTORS - Las Vegas, NV
Las Vegas Real Estate - Summerlin Homes - 702.592.

@ J. Philip #41,

Could it be the Big Banksters have more money then the National Association of Mortgage Brokers?

Regardless...

http://www.realtoractioncenter.com/realtor-party/act/

Yeah... you should vote. DUH!

Perhaps you can go through the "REALTOR Party" site and find some materials on Representatives and their stance on the issues that Realtors need to be aware of and how to take action?

Currently.... there are no current Calls for Action..

http://www.realtoractioncenter.com/realtor-party/act/calls-for-action.html

$40 is chump change... I just feel that a better job could be done educating members of the issues, Representatives that support (or are against) issues important to us and what can be done about it.

Just send in more money... okie dokie.

Hey... here's an idea... if you are for keeping the MID... contact your representatives and give them your opinion Here:

http://www.contactingthecongress.org/

or

http://www.realtoractioncenter.com/realtor-party/tools-and-resources/findelectedofficials.html

I know... call me crazy. I just think spotlighting who to vote for... and who not to vote for is more powerful then paying Representatives off.

I would also like to see more transparency on who exactly is receiving RPAC funds and why..

http://www.opensecrets.org/orgs/recips.php?cycle=2010&id=D000000062

I see some names on there that are quite Frankly, Revolting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mar 24, 2011 04:36 PM #49
Rainmaker
630,071
Don Rogers
Keller Williams Realty Chesterfield - O'Fallon, MO
Realtor, Broker, CDPE, GRI, OnullFallon MO & St Charles County MO homes

Not only is it a 50% increase in dues and membership they are saying that this will be reviewed in two years.   Oh what about that $35 assessment they are currently charging us is that due to end?  I think NOT.

Mar 25, 2011 11:49 AM #50
Rainmaker
179,121
Barbara Calwhite
Keller Williams Realty of Southwest Missouri - Joplin, MO
417-438-7387 Specializing in Relocation

Thanks for the information.  I have forwarded your post on to our RPAC representative.  There is a lot of information to asborb.  I have bookmarked it to read more thoroughly this evening.

I think we all need to keep on top of this.

Mar 28, 2011 01:20 PM #51
Anonymous
Anonymous
Anonymous

Larry Nolan Stewart has something to say about that too. Please look it up and don't forget to hammer your association hard. Might be a good idea for new leadership at NAR. Notice how they got the local associations to carry their water on this? 

Apr 03, 2011 08:56 PM #52
Anonymous
Anonymous
Anonymous

Let's demand a $40.00 reduction in our local or state dues. Time our associations realize that we employ them. They work for us not at us.

Apr 03, 2011 09:00 PM #53
Anonymous
Anonymous
Anonymous

Tom, Conrad #20 above thinks insulting you for your opinion is the professional thing to do. If I am tempted to say, "What a jerk!" but I will leave that to the guy that looks at him in the mirror next time he shaves. Conrad has no logical argument so he resorts to insult. In the meantime, I remind Conrad that the rule around many associations is, pay your dues and shut up." I have had a running debate with our association and the way the pac contribution is a line item in the invoices and not clearly indicated as voluntary. How many agents pay the extra not as voluntary but by confusion? For a profession that prides itself in honesty, I find that to be questionable. 

Apr 03, 2011 09:41 PM #54
Rainer
50,305
Ronda Ching Day
Hawaii Homes International LLC - Honolulu, HI

NAR does need a PAC, a voice as well as an effective lobbying group to promote legislation that will help us and our clients.

We need to remind organizations that many agents/individuals make up NAR, individuals who created the MLS information that often is disseminated via IDX to websites that receive advertising revenues.  Why can't some of these advertising revenues make it back to those agents who spent time creating, inputting in correct data in a timely manner to avoid penalties or fees from their Board.  Perhaps then, we wouldn't have to see increase in NAR PAC dues.

Jun 18, 2011 03:28 AM #55
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Rainmaker
1,055,259

Conrad Allen

Webster, Ma, Realtor
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