By Kelly Killian, Manager of Editorial Development, REALTOR.org
NAR received the following e-mail last week from a Washington-state REALTOR®, and it served as a thoughtful and important reminder of why we — and all of you — do what we do:
I had a thought … I know for many years we had to fight to keep banks out of real estate and we, as an organization, spent a lot of money to hold them off. Given the events of the last five years, the mess with the mortgage companies and banks going out of business, I have tried to imagine if there weren’t any REALTORS® to fight that battle, how much worst this last 3-4 years could have been. I wanted to thank you for the work you do for our members and the spirit in which you do it for Americans and the fight for homeownership. I, for one, am proud to be a REALTOR® and gladly pay my dues to keep us all at work.
Indeed, working with Congress to keep banks out of the real-estate brokerage business, is just one of the very important policy accomplishments NAR and the many REALTOR® advocates and volunteers have achieved on behalf of all of our nearly 1.1 million members — and their clients.
Recently, NAR outlined some 50 key legislative and policy accomplishments in 2010 — just a portion of the work conducted on behalf of REALTORS® last year. Among the efforts that served to protect REALTORS®’ business interests, sustain residential and commercial housing opportunities, and eliminate barriers to credit were extending the closing-date requirement for the home buyer tax credit, ensuring the continued funding of the National Flood Insurance Program, and securing RESPA guidance from HUD.
And the work continues in 2011, with our efforts toward secondary-mortgage market reform, preserving the mortgage-interest deduction, and much more.