REALTORS® around the country are in Washington, D.C., this week to confront the biggest issues facing the industry and meet with lawmakers to craft future housing policy goals. Here’s what’s coming out of the REALTORS® Legislative Meetings that you need to know for your business.
Although no new action items came out of the Multiple Listing Issues & Policy Committee on Wednesday during the REALTORS® Legislative Meetings in Washington, D.C., National Association of REALTORS® Director of Engagement Rodney Gansho shared the decision made earlier this year to give MLSs additional time to implement two of the eight policy changes approved by NAR’s board of directors in 2021. Read more. –Stacey Moncrieff
Reaffirming the Movement for Housing Equality
REALTORS® gathered at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial on Thursday to commemorate the legacy of the civil rights leader and recommit to the fight for fair housing in America.
“In our own time of unparalleled change, we can draw inspiration from Dr. King and his call for moral clarity in tumultuous times,” National Association of REALTORS® President Leslie Rouda Smith said at the reception. “Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s vision for a better America certainly included fighting for fair housing. He knew that where a person lives shapes their opportunities for their lifetime—and for generations to come. This is still true today.”
The market remains challenging for marginalized people, as more than 7 million households have been priced out since the start of the pandemic, Rouda Smith noted. There's a 30-point gap in the homeownership rate between Blacks and Whites and a 20-point gap between Hispanics and Whites.
NAR, which was one of the first organizations to contribute funding to the construction of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in 2011, launched its ACT! Plan in 2020 to help close those gaps. “Those who stood with Dr. King are forever on the right side of history. His dream is the American dream. And that’s a dream we fight for every day,” Rouda Smith said. –Graham Wood
Buzzy trends like data analytics, the metaverse, and blockchain technology may seem far removed from residential real estate. But data from Google Analytics can help inform marketing choices for real estate professionals and identify sources of housing market disruption. The metaverse offers new opportunities for immersive open houses, and blockchain has the potential to make real estate transactions safer and nearly instantaneous. Read more. –Catherine Mesick
NAR First Vice President Tracy Kasper told the story at Thursday’s meeting of the Broker Engagement Committee of holding a virtual brokers summit amid the pandemic and expecting a few hundred brokers to attend. “We had 3,600 brokers in attendance,” Kasper said. “We brokers need each other.” She noted that brokers are banding together to learn from one another and keep each other grounded through the volatility of the market. Read more. –Nicole Slaughter Graham
How Advocacy Works Behind the Scenes
Former Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and Ja’Ron Smith, who advised former President Donald Trump, told REALTORS® on Monday that their advocacy on the national, state, and local levels helps move the needle on housing policy. “You are on the ground, and you know what the challenges are,” Bottoms said during the Federal Legislative and Political Forum. “Policy changes come from people saying, ‘This is what I see as an issue.’ ” –Graham Wood