By Kelly Burge, CEO, Northwest Iowa Regional Board of REALTORS®.
2017 is shaping up to be a year of growth and change for our board, both internally and externally.
For the last several years, I think it’s fair to say that around the NWIA, we’ve been rather internally focused. Working through merging associations with our regional colleagues and beginning the process of assimilating together as one board has taken time, energy, and effort. It’s been work, but it’s been worth doing. Ultimately, it’s gone well and I’m pleased to see us moving forward as a united entity. Just look at this year’s Board of Directors, who hail from all corners of our region. They are the proof: we are becoming a regional entity. While the process hasn’t been perfect and there’s always more work to do, we’re moving in the right direction. TOGETHER. Yay, us!!
2017 is going to see us shift our focus from being primarily internally focused, to taking a far more external perspective than ever before. NWIA members are going to be asked to take a larger interest and role in both state and national legislative matters. Whether you’re “political” or not, both IAR and NAR have recognized the importance of engagement and activity in this arena for REALTOR® members, and every one of you is going to be asked to make a commitment— of both time and resources.
Frankly, if you are a REALTOR®, you must learn to be “political”. You got into politics when you joined this organization, whether you knew it or not.
The writing is on the wall, gang. IAR and NAR are just reading the tea leaves and accurately predicting the future. Your livelihood and profession are going to depend on you stepping to the plate with time and resources to defend your current clients, future customers, and the foundation on which you make your living.
I sound serious, because it is. Do you want to lose the mortgage interest deduction? Just consider what that loss alone might do to your business. The implications are massive.
All signs point to an active spring in the Iowa Legislature, with the 2016 elections placing leadership of both chambers firmly into the hands of Republicans. Whether you like this change or not, REALTORS® in our state are going to be working harder than ever to navigate this year’s session and continue to push for changes that will positively impact Iowa home buyers, home owners, and our profession.
The things you invest in now will be critical to the upcoming year, both in our board and your profession.
The most immediate way you can help is to be involved and participate in the Iowa REALTORS® Bus-In Day to Des Moines, coming up on February 1. (Yes, this is about two weeks earlier than in previous years.) IAR has moved up the event in the hopes of exerting more pressure and influence on state legislators, as we work aggressively to again attempt to pass the Home Savings Account legislation that has languished in years past under previous state leaders. It’s free to attend, and is a great way to get involved. We drive you, feed you (twice), and equip you to go to the Iowa Statehouse with confidence and speak your mind on real estate maters. Our leaders want–and need—to hear from you, in person, in Des Moines.
I do hope you will consider joining us. Details and registration are available here. Remember, it’s free!
Other opportunities to get involved in a variety of ways with both state and national politics will be forthcoming. Watch for more information coming in future emails.
The conversation has begun. I hope you will engage with us as we begin to look externally in the coming year. Exciting things are on the horizon.
As always, the staff and I stand ready to assist in any way possible, and we wish you great professional success in 2017.