New year, new guide:
Check out the updated REALTOR® Party Resource Guide for the latest on advocacy grants, programs, resources, and opportunities.
What You Need to Know
Homeownership is the largest source of wealth among most families, and equity gains are increasing. A homeowner who purchased a single-family existing home 10 years ago would have gained $225,000 in home equity if they sold at the median sales price of $363,100 in the third quarter of 2021, Gay Cororaton, NAR Senior Economist, says on the association’s Economists’ Outlook blog.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau released a new analysis that accuses the three major credit bureaus – Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion – of routinely failing to fully respond to consumers who have found errors on their credit reports. The three credit bureaus reported fixing less than 2% of complaints in 2021, down from nearly 25% in 2019.
NAR released its inaugural ESG+R Report this week, highlighting the association’s top sustainability accomplishments in 2021 within four categories: environment, social, governance, and resilience. In the coming years, this annual report will offer a snapshot of NAR’s current sustainability activity – existing programs, resources, and services – while tracking progress on stated goals in NAR’s multiyear Sustainability and Resilience Plan.
By the end of 2021, the REALTORS® Relief Foundation’s Hope Rising campaign surpassed its fundraising goal of $8.5 million. RRF provides housing relief to victims of hurricanes, floods, wildfires, and other disasters. The campaign received more than 2,500 donations from REALTORS®, state and local REALTOR® associations, MLS organizations, and other companies.
The REALTOR® Party At Work
Highlighted here are a few of the many REALTOR® Party success stories across the nation. These and others are cataloged in the Success Stories section on REALTORParty.realtor.
When it comes to potential for flooding, Baldwin County, Ala. is a perfect storm. It’s also an area of rapid growth, attracting new residents who are not familiar with flood risks. REALTORS® are on the front lines of promoting emergency readiness and preservation of property value. In August, a Rural Outreach Grant from the REALTOR® Party supported Baldwin REALTORS®’ Flood Week to raise awareness among members, local officials, and the public.
When the leadership of the Greater Baltimore Board of REALTORS® (GBBR) decided to make a public stand denouncing racism and other challenges to fair housing, it went big – and took to the airwaves. With the support of a Fair Housing Grant from the REALTOR® Party, the board produced a trio of 30-second videos to air throughout the region and on social media, featuring messages delivered by GBBR’s Board President, President-Elect, and the Mayor of the City of Baltimore.
Greater Greenville Association of REALTORS® Uses Advocacy Everywhere to Prevent Moratorium on Residential Subdivisions
Costs are increasing as the demand for housing skyrockets in greater Greenville, a fast-growing ‘micro-city’ in northwest South Carolina, and the last thing the region needed was a countywide moratorium on new residential subdivisions. When this restriction was proposed in September by the Planning and Development Committee of the Greenville County Council, the Greater Greenville Association of REALTORS® responded with a Call for Action, bringing a strong and swift response from its members that made the governing body reconsider.
Northeast Ohio’s Beaver Creek Area Association of REALTORS® and Youngstown Columbiana Association of REALTORS® collaborated on a placemaking project to transform underutilized land near the trailhead of the Greenway Trail into a pocket park. The trail attracts 200,000 hikers, runners, and cyclists each year. Soon, REALTORS® Park will be dedicated as a gathering place for village residents, visitors, and trail users.
Resources & Opportunities
NAR’s Growth Management Fact Book provides a comprehensive look at modern growth management techniques, such as urban growth boundaries, housing moratoria, adequate public facilities, and cluster zoning, to help REALTOR® associations stay informed and advance growth-related issue priorities. The recent update includes the latest on parking reform trends, planning for equity models, missing middle housing strategies, and links to NAR resources on all topics.
You’re an advocate for change, and NAR’s Community Outreach Grants provide the resources you need to move your association’s advocacy agenda forward. Five grants with various levels of funding help associations act on issues that matter most. View the Community Outreach video to learn how these grants and resources help associations build stronger communities.
In 2021, 20 state and local associations were awarded Consumer Advocacy Outreach grants, totaling $400,000, to support campaigns ranging from affordable housing to property tax to wildfire safety. Associations can apply for grant funds up to $25,000 – with a 15% skin in the game requirement – to create consumer advocacy activities that strengthen the real estate market and promote property ownership in their communities.
The Advocacy Resource Guide can help associations reach their advocacy goals and meet Core Standards requirements. State and local REALTOR® association staff can request printed copies for events and conferences by contacting Ted Wright, Coordinator, Advocacy Meetings. Requests for printed guides must be submitted two weeks prior to the event.
Success stories demonstrate how associations have taken advantage of REALTOR® Party tools and resources to advance their community engagement and advocacy efforts. Search examples by keyword and state including recent stories from Long Island, Spokane, and Massachusetts.
NAR is now accepting applications for the 2023 Leadership Academy. This program identifies, inspires, and mentors emerging leaders from the local and state association level, and allows future leaders to experience multiple facets of leadership and define their leadership style along the way. Application deadline is Feb. 14.