Voice for Real Estate 65: Sales Update, Tax Reform, Flood Insurance, Appraisal, AEI

Tax reform is next on Congress’ to-do list and NAR President William Brown has said NAR is ready to protect longstanding real estate tax incentives. Also covered in the latest Voice for Real Estate news video from NAR are updates on flood insurance, the appraisal profession, home sales, and last month’s AE Institute in Denver. 

Featured segments

  • Sales update 
  • Tax reform 
  • Flood insurance 
  • Appraisal challenges 
  • AEI 



Americans are eager to buy homes

Tax reform goes to Congress

Appraisers are concerned about taking People – out of property valuation.

These stories and more on The Voice for Real Estate.

Hi, I’m Stephen Gasque of the National Association of REALTORS®.

The housing market is sending out mixed signals. NAR’s latest data on closed sales is down while its latest on contract signings is up. But there is one constant in all the data: Americans want to buy. They just can’t always find the house they want, and sometimes when they do, they or can’t afford it! Here’s NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun.


Other data from NAR show households are increasingly confident about the economy. NAR’s latest HOME survey, which measures attitudes about buying and the current market, shows the share of households who think the economy is improving soared to its highest level since NAR started surveying households last year.

That’s good news, because a new report from the University of California at Berkeley finds that a resurgent home buying sector could add two full percentage points to the country’s economic growth. That would push the growth rate to over 3 percent.


And on the commercial side, almost 60 percent of commercial real estate practitioners say they’re seeing an increase in business openings while only a third say the opposite: that fewer businesses are coming online.


Health-care reform did NOT make it to the House floor for a vote. So – will the same thing happen – with tax reform? Congressional leaders have promised a sweeping reform of the tax code, but it could take months, or years, to get a bill onto the president’s desk. NAR will be there to stand up for the homeownership and commercial real estate incentives that strengthen our communities and help keep U.S. property markets vibrant. Here’s NAR President William Brown.


In the meantime, Congress has to raise the debt ceiling to cover existing commitments — and pass a short-term spending measure. And let’s not forget funding federal flood insurance, a priority for REALTORS® across the country: NAR is asking for a five-year extension on the program, which expires this fall. NAR’s Ken Wingert  has more.


With any Congressional action, REALTORS® must make their voices heard. We will keep you up to date in the months as these and other issues work their way through Congress.


What’s the state of the appraisal profession? In a new report from NAR, appraisers said they’re satisfied with their work and plan to stay in the profession. But appraisers are concerned about automated valuations, that rely less on personal abilities, and more on online data!  And also, they have mixed feeling about appraisal management companies. These are intermediaries that match appraisers to jobs as a way to keep an arm’s length distance between appraisers and the companies that hire them. Here’s Ken Fears of NAR Research on what this comprehensive report is telling us.


You can download that report in its entirety on nar.realtor by searching “2017 appraisal report.”


More than 1,000 executives of state and local associations of REALTORS® were in Denver in March for the Association Executive Institute, an annual conference focused on how to serve the nation’s REALTORS®.

Tracy Rutka, director of professional standards and practices at the Wisconsin REALTORS® Association, said she has returned to the office bursting with ideas to help you succeed in today’s real estate industry.


AEI has an entire website devoted to the annual event. Speaker handouts, videos, and other material are all available there so if you’re an association executive and couldn’t attend or missed some events, you can still benefit from all the insight that was shared. That website is at 2017NARAEI.com


And that’s our show for the week of April 3. Yon can get more of everything we talked about today at The Voice for Real Estate page on nar.realtor. Thank you for joining us and be sure to join us again as we bring you all the latest news on The Voice for Real Estate.