As I predicted in my article on March 25th, your National Association of Realtors® officially rubber-stamped the national dues increase of 50% in the face of overwhelming agent opposition. I was troubled when it was floated without so much as asking us, the membership, but I thought maybe I was out of touch with the mainstream agent opinion.
Then came the flood of comments — my little blog article received five times more comments than most lead editorials in the New York Times. I realized that I had touched a nerve. The comments were, just like me, overwhelmingly against the proposed dues increase. I was glad to see that I wasn’t out of touch, but that NAR was.
Several of my readers asked me if I would do something… if I would use my meager platform and my ability to articulate my opinion to help stop NAR from cramming the dues increase down our throats. After some thought I decided to at least try to use what little influence I have to help change their minds. I suspected I was on a fool’s errand but thought that if I didn’t at least try then I couldn’t complain later.
So I used the technology resources at my disposal, combined with the flood of comments I received from my readers, to put together a survey that would give NAR a statistically valid basis for changing their minds. When we put the survey in the field, as we anticipated, the results we received were astoundingly one-sided. See for yourself.
And more importantly, with nearly a thousand survey submissions, we were able to provide NAR with a very high confidence level. The statistical margin of error was a remarkably low 3.17% — a much lower margin of error than most political surveys conducted today. And as it turns out, we were not the only ones assessing agent sentiment. There were at least two others that queried members.
Another real estate blog, AgentGenius.com conducted their own poll which showed agent sentiment strongly against the dues increase. RealTown conducted a survey where over 82% of the agents who responded were against the dues increase. In other words, our survey was not an anomaly. The member opinion was very clear and non-ambiguous.
What was the common result? Agents were/are universally and overwhelmingly against the dues increase. There was simply no room for misinterpretation of member sentiment. At least three surveys and NAR leadership was aware of all three. And at least three overwhelmingly negative outcomes. But that didn’t in any way deter your National Association of Realtors® directors. And why not?
Because they know what is best for you. You and I are too stupid to know what’s going on! Without the all-knowing, all-caring, almighty hand of the National Association of Realtors® how can we possibly make it in this world? They know it all. We know nothing. Political activism is the cure for all that ails our industry. Didn’t you know that?
And they’ve demonstrated that they are so very good at political activism. So good, in fact, that I challenge any of my readers to cite one single example where NAR successfully changed a political outcome. The fact is there are no examples to be found. Millions and millions of our dollars spent. No tangible results. Think about it. Banks in real estate? Nope. Keeping our listings private? Are you kidding? Their greed actually opened the door when they sold our listings to Realtor.com.
No, they are good at spending our money… at wasting our money. And I am sick of it. I have a better idea. How about we take up our own causes. When something effects us, we know it. We don’t need to fund the huge expense accounts of our out-of-touch NAR officers and directors. Thanks, but no thanks.
Here is my bottom line: It’s not the $40. It is the blatant and arrogant disregard for the very clearly articulated opinions of us, the members. We’re stupid and out of touch. We don’t even know what is best for us and so they don’t want to hear from us. Don’t believe me? Try finding the contact information for any single director or officer on the entire Realtor.org website. No, they don’t want to talk to us. They want to rule over us and spend our money.
I say, “Fire them all!” The sooner the better. I neither want them nor need them to represent my interests — in fact, they have now shown me that they have little regard for my interests or the interests of 97% of the agent community. Am I being too harsh? Let me ask you this: What would you do if it were your yard guy? Your maid? Your secretary? Your mechanic? Your attorney? You’d fire them. As far as I’m concerned, they work for us, and they are giving us the finger. I say throw them out now!
But that’s just me. If you feel the same way, or if you totally disagree, please take a moment to post a comment. I’d love to hear your opinion.