NAR’s campaign and the Minnesota Association of Realtors

This new letter from the Minnesota Association of Realtors and the new advertising campaign from the National Association of Realtors have one thing in common – credibility.

The MNAR’s first letter asking some Realtors whether they would be better served in other careers generated quality discussion, on both sides. That they have perilously crawled so far out on a limb to question whether some members are harming their profession more than helping is laudable. That they have, in their new letter, (backtracked a little bit) placed the focus on Brokers is fantastic. Were I a member of the public, learning about this effort would give me more confidence in Realtors. The MNAR is placing the greater good ahead of garnering more member dues. For that they should be commended.

On the flip side, NAR’s campaign generates spoofs such as this. And discussion from real estate bloggers like this. Chalk this up as a lesson is unintended consequences.

As a Realtor, I depend on earning my clients’ trust in order to solidify our relationship. NAR’s campaign may damage this relationship. How can it possibly be a great time to buy and sell? Everybody wants to talk about the real estate market. I was queried about this campaign yesterday at a baptism party. My response? I disagreed with the campaign.

Sandy Mattingly states at the Matrix:

NAR is a national organization, so almost anything that it says nationally runs against the all-real-estate-is-local axiom. Except in extreme circumstances, the same message just cannot apply to even most of this large country …

I appreciate what the organization to which I pay dues is trying to do. However, they are doing more harm than good to our reputations as trusted professionals.

Yesterday morning on CNBC, NAR’s president Tom Stevens and Roubini Global Economics’ Nouriel Roubini faced off.  One said the market’s great the other said recession was upon us. Guess which one said which? The real state of the market is probably somewhere in between what they both said.

This morning, Toll Brothers (huge national builder not yet in the Charlottesville market) announced lower-than-expected earnings.

“We expect the cancellation rate to remain elevated while home prices decline and the time [needed] to sell a home lengthens,” he added.

People appreciate and respect candor. In the face of evidence to the contrary, NAR should say the facts rather than pour $40 million towards “rah-rah” campaigns. It does more harm than good and provides fodder for those desperate for a market decline. One benefit that comes from all the spin is that blogs that write in a transparent fashion should gain credibility.

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