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Residential Real Estate Council Invests in RPAC at Record Levels in 2017

You see the letters “CRS” and you know it identifies sales agents who’ve met the exacting standards of experience and education set by the Residential Real Estate Council (RRC).  So, it might not surprise you to learn that the more than 34,000 active REALTORS® who are members of the organization are also engaged at a high rate in industry advocacy: in fact, in 2017, their collective RPAC investment reached $4.5 million, up from $3.9 million in 2016.

This dramatic increase can be credited to a movement RRC (formerly known as the Council of Residential Specialists) calls Building the Complete REALTOR®, whose hashtag #morethanhouses refers to all those ancillary activities, like volunteering and civic involvement, by which its members improve the quality of life in their neighborhoods and strengthen and protect the real estate industry. The energetic movement, says Michelle Huffman, RRC’s Director of Communication, can, in turn, be credited to Leigh Brown, last year’s RRC President.

Brown, who is now 2018 RPAC Fundraising Trustees Chair, says “One of the biggest and most successful undertakings of the National Association of REALTORS® is our advocacy efforts. The members of RRC are already leaders in so many regards, when it comes to professionalism, education, achievement, etc., that it was a natural progression to examine and improve our efforts on the advocacy front as well,” she says, adding, “The members of RRC represent a large portion of the investment and volunteerism that leads to success. The focus on improving our reach among members is that of outreach and education:  I have personally found that many members WANT to do more once they know WHAT is being accomplished.”

In addition to emphasizing RPAC awareness at meetings and in email and social media campaigns, Brown also addressed the importance of investing in her President’s Letter at the front of The Residential Specialist, the group’s every-other-monthly magazine. Also in the magazine, RRC began celebrating its Major Investors in a high-profile list that’s become a popular bi-annual feature. Brown also initiated a new icon on the CRS.com website’s Find a CRS page, identifying RPAC Major Investors:

“There’s a growing movement among RPAC Major Investors to refer to one another, as that means the end consumer is more likely to be served by a REALTOR® who is involved in more than just their transaction. As such, we added a filter to the Find a CRS app, to help members locate CRS Designees who are also Major Investors. It’s been well received and becomes an ongoing effort to reach more members, so they can belong to the group and also use the app!” she says.

Huffman notes that “Leigh’s efforts were focused and tireless, and her message of investing in and protecting the industry really took hold with our members. Raising the visibility of those who invest has also been a successful strategy:  not only are they strong advocates, but great role models for their peers.” Says Brown, “Nothing makes me prouder as a REALTOR® than to know how many of my peers are engaged in changing this profession forever, while we also protect it from unnecessary and damaging regulation.”

To learn more about how the Residential Real Estate Council encouraged record investment in advocacy last year, contact Michelle Huffman at or 312-321-4428.

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Investing in a Legacy of Success

bobGoldberg_sm.jpge_mendenhall.jpgWe’ve just come back from the 2018 President’s Circle Conference. RPAC and, specifically, President’s Circle had a banner year in 2017, breaking records with 35% member participation and 1,207 President’s Circle members, respectively. This year’s President’s Circle Conference was no different with more than 1,500 attendees and a stellar line-up of speakers. The event also led to record investments, totaling more than $178,000.

For those of you who are not familiar with this RPAC Program, President’s Circle allows REALTORS® to contribute directly to REALTOR® Champions at the federal level. Why? Federal election law prohibits RPAC from making more than $10,000 in direct contributions to any single federal candidate during an election cycle – a pittance in today’s age of multi-million dollar congressional races. However, individual members may make contributions of their own. As a result, NAR member contributions routinely exceed $100,000 for each Member of Congress chosen for President’s Circle support. This level of financial strength ensures our REALTOR® Champion candidates have the financial resources they need to successfully seek re-election and continue advocating for public policy positions shared by REALTORS®. To date, nearly $12 million in direct contributions to have been given to 151 candidates from 47 states*.

The President’s Circle Conference is a two-day annual meeting that gives President’s Circle members the opportunity to meet and hear from congressional leaders and staff, and political and public policy experts to discuss salient issues. This year, South Carolina Senator and REALTOR® Champion Tim Scott inspired the crowd, thanking our members and staff for their bipartisan support of homeownership. He noted that, “financial independence is the cornerstone of the American Dream,” and told personal stories of his close relationship with his Federal Political Coordinator, Michael Sally, and the support he received during the tax reform debate.

We encourage you to learn more about President’s Circle, and hope to continue breaking records and seeing more friendly faces at the 2019 President’s Circle Conference.

 

*This figure does not include national political party contributions.

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Vote

As a member of the REALTOR® Party, NAR encourages you to vote for candidates and issues that build strong communities, protect property interests and promote a vibrant business environment at the local, state and national levels.

Get Involved

For REALTORS®

Register to Vote

Find Your Polling Place

Find Your Elected Officials

Update Your Voter Registration Information

 

For REALTOR® Associations

Voter Registration Program

See how many REALTORS® are registered to vote in your area.

Order “Vote, Act, Invest” Campaign Buttons, Bumper Stickers, Balloons, T-shirts and More

 

Resources

REALTOR® Party/RPAC Federal Candidate Endorsements

NAR’s Top Federal Issues

2016 RPAC Federal Election Cycle Summary

2014 RPAC Federal Election Cycle Summary

 

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Future of the REALTOR® Party PAG

In early 2017, the NAR Leadership Team created a Presidential Advisory Group (PAG) on the Future of the REALTOR® Party, and charged its 21 members with five responsibilities.

  1. Analyze the results of the REALTOR® Party’s first five years of performance (2012-2016);
  2. Identify and recommend improvements to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the management of the REALTOR® Party;
  3. Review each REALTOR® Party program and recommend enhancements or elimination—and identify new REALTOR® Party program offerings;
  4. Establish REALTOR® Party Strategic Objectives for the next five years (2018-2022); and
  5. Identify and recommend the financial resources necessary to continue to grow the REALTOR® Party.

PAG Documents

Full PAG Report

Executive Summary

Recommendations

“In a Nutshell” Summary

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s Next

 

PAG Members

Thank you to the following 21 members who worked hard to produce the Future of the REALTOR® Party PAG report and recommendations:

Leslie Rouda Smith, Chair (TX) Jim Liptak, Vice Chair (HI)
Randall Blankenship (NC) Tim Lund (MT)
Laura Crowther (SC) Bill Martin (FL)
John Flor (WI) Tiffany Meyer (OH)
Mike Ford (AR) Kenny Parcell (UT)
Kathy Fowler (OK) Charlie Oppler (NJ)
Nathan Gorton (WA) Kevin Sears (MA)
Greg Herb (PA) John Sebree (MO)
Christine Hansen (FL) Nick Solis (CA)
Lisa Hollister (MS) Margo Wheeler (WA)
Tracy Kasper (ID)

Questions? Contact the NAR Leadership Team at FutureRP@realtors.org.

 

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Residential Real Estate Council Invests in RPAC at Record Levels in 2017

The Residential Real Estate Council (formerly the Council of Residential Specialists) was already a powerful fundraising body for RPAC, but in 2017, its investing was supercharged; its Major Investors and President’s Circle membership went up, too.

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Thanks to a timely Issues Mobilization campaign, northern California’s Calaveras County Association of REALTORS® was able to reverse authorization for a loan program that the FHA no longer insures. When it comes to financing energy conservation improvements, they stand behind more responsible, less risky options.

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Louisiana REALTORS® Defeat a Proposed Tax on Services

Every couple of years, the Louisiana legislature discusses a tax on services to help close the budget deficit, and every time, the Louisiana REALTORS® fight back to protect consumers from a huge increase in costs to get in to a new home or business property. This year, they had help from the REALTOR® Party's new Advocacy Everywhere program.

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Miami REALTORS® Create Better Block in West Coconut Grove

Teams of both YPNs and "Old PNs" (as they're affectionately known in Miami) came together with the University of Miami’s School of Architecture to revive a vacant lot in West Coconut Grove with a new weekly marketplace and a vibrant landmark mural celebrating the area's Bahamian immigrant culture.

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Phoenix REALTORS®’ Creativity Leads to Sweeping RPAC Investments

With more than 9,200 members, the only sure-fire way for a mega-board like the Phoenix Association of REALTORS® (PAR) to get the attention of its full membership is to tie information to its dues renewal mailing. Several years ago, PAR launched a sweepstakes to encourage investment in RPAC during the December-January dues-renewal season; three years in, the event has gained such momentum that an RPAC Fundraising Grant recently earned back more than nine-times its value in RPAC investment.

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Wisconsin REALTORS® Help Lower Property Taxes, Strengthen School Budgets, and Protect Property Rights

The Wisconsin REALTORS® Association launched two successful Issues Mobilization campaigns: the first convinced the legislature to eliminate a minor property tax dating back to the Great Depression; the other supported a new law that overturned an existing one that had been upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court.

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