Elizabeth Mendenhall on the Real Estate Industry in the U.S.

Elizabeth Mendenhall

Q: What are the main challenges the real estate profession is facing today in the US? 

A: One of the greatest challenges is the market and lack of inventory of homes available for sale, which is raising home prices and significantly reducing affordability for buyers. Another challenge is increased competition from other agents, virtual firms and even online listing portals. Increasing professionalism is also a challenge, but one that Realtors® are tackling in a variety of ways to ensure a better transaction and consumer experience; raising the bar on ourselves will instill greater trust in Realtors® and ensure we are the best we can be for our clients. Another challenge is connecting with the consumer about why a Realtor® is essential and an important partner in the real estate transaction when so much real estate information is online today. The good news is that there are opportunities for us to collaborate in new way and with new partners to come up with better ideas and better solutions to these challenges. 
Q: What are the strategies NAR is using to help and advocate before those challenges?  

A: To ease inventory constrains and prices rising faster than wages we are continuing to press home builders for more new home construction. We are also constantly exploring new business models and opportunities for partnerships, with groups inside of and outside of real estate, to come up with better ideas and solutions for how Realtors® do business, so we can be more competitive in a technology-driven environment. Recently, NAR’s board of directors took an important step to strengthen professionalism by passing two amendments to the association’s strict member Code of Ethics, to publish information about Code violations and have greater accountability to one another. NAR is working closely with our member to evaluate a Realtors®‘ role and how we are essential to the consumer, so we can figure out new ways to help better distinguish ourselves as Realtors® and promote our professionalism. Helping consumers navigate through transaction challenges and showing, not just expressing, our value and insights and how essential we are is key to consumers better understanding our importance and justifying our commissions. 


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