'Tis the season to take stock of all we have and all we hold dear.
thank you

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Giving thanks is routine in this business as a way to retain clients and build connections with colleagues. But now and again, it’s appropriate to put business plans and marketing strategies aside and think about gratitude for its own sake—full stop. REALTORS® work in a vibrant industry, providing professional guidance on a product that shelters people, builds fortunes, and defines and strengthens communities. Since the Great Recession, the housing market has rebounded and foreclosures are at a 12-year low, according to a recent CoreLogic report.

That is a lot to be thankful for. But our gratitude isn’t just a passive recognition of our bounties; it’s manifest in the individual and collective actions we take to promote and support our shared values. President John F. Kennedy said, in his Thanksgiving Day proclamation in 1963, “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words but to live by them.” This issue is dedicated to the real estate professionals who are turning gratitude into action.

Thanks: Because real estate professionals working in every state, commonwealth, and territory of the United States are putting boots on the ground to better their communities and the world.

  • Meet the National Association of REALTORS®’ 2018 Good Neighbor Award winners, men and women who go above and beyond to make the world a better place.
  • Get a look inside the Counselors of Real Estate’s Consulting Corps, professionals who give their time to help governments, nonprofits, and other institutions solve real estate challenges. 

Thanks: Because REALTORS® are actively engaged in our republic, with more than 85 percent registered to vote, compared to 78 percent of the voting age population. In the 2016 general election, 74 percent of REALTORS® voted, versus 56 percent of the voting age population.

Thanks: Because REALTORS® don’t just vote; they take action. This summer, more than 130,000 REALTORS® reached out to their members of Congress to ask for a flood insurance extension and long-term reform. Last fall, 213,500 -REALTORS® participated in NAR’s Call for Action on tax reform. (Read about one of the benefits of the new tax law here.) At the local and state level, 4,830 REALTOR® Party programs were used by 1,082 state and local associations to advocate for public policy issues and candidates that impact real estate in their communities.

Thanks: Because last year 439,236 REALTORS® recognized the importance of having a seat at the policy table and invested in the REALTORS® Political Action Committee, representing 35.5 percent of the NAR membership. Of those investors, 8,840 were major investors, giving $1,000 or more.

Thanks: Because homeownership remains the dream of most Americans, and REALTORS® help make it so. In NAR’s 2018 Aspiring Home Buyers Profile, eight in 10 nonowners and nine in 10 owners report that homeownership is part of their American dream. Mississippi broker Brenda Love says she found her calling helping people who never thought they could qualify to buy.

Thanks: Because REALTORS® are making financial sacrifices every day to help others in need. Your contributions have enabled the REALTORS® Relief Foundation, in this year alone (as of Sept. 30), to respond to nine disasters, providing $1.5 million in assistance and helping countless families with short-term housing needs. Read more about the RRF in our Q&A with NAR President Elizabeth Mendenhall.

Thanks: Because it’s REALTORS® who set the tone for this magazine. NAR’s Member Communications Committee provides editorial direction, and thousands of other members reach out to the association each year via telephone, email, and social media to share their stories and offer thoughts about trends and challenges in their business.