As we feared, a major disaster struck the South. Realtors®, it has been reported, were killed and some lost their homes in last week’s vicious tornadoes . What is the magnitude of this disaster to the Realtors® and their families and their staffs?
Are their funds available to those who have lost everything; and, in some instances, the provider, the moneymaker, the ability to produce income? As we campaigned for a Benevolent Foundation for funds to help as the last resort in such instances we were told from the national level of NAR that the help should come from state and local benevolent funds. How many are there in these several states? We only know of a couple of local funds.
Magnitude of disaster can consume a pool, where available, of funds. Why is there no NAR Benevolent Foundation to supplement locals and states facing huge losses?
Last fall we asked for $2,000,000 to seed a Benevolent Foundation. We were turned down.
This month NAR will vote a dues increase of $40 per member per year based on a five year projection of needs for political survival. Yes, political survival is critical to our industry.
The $35 per member per year is still assessed for public relations…Realtor® image campaign. Image is critical also.
Just as critical is survival of Realtor® family members who have incurred tragic circumstances and need assistance. $2,000,000 spread over five years would be $ .40
$40 + $35 per member per year at 1,007,000* members totals $377,625,000. The $2,000,000 we were asking for is only 1/2 of 1% of that amount. Please note that in our calculations we have ignored RPAC dollars and other dues dollars. We are figuring only on the two special funds.
NAR answered our request by forming a Work Group to provide a model for states and locals that wished to establish a benevolent fund. I was told the work group met and that the decision would be forthcoming this month in Washington. That’s all we know…not who was on the group, what was their formal charge, when they met or what their conclusions were. We have not been made aware of anyone who supports the campaign being appointed to the Work Group.
Remember, we were told that Realtor® Family members were better served by states and locals. Would those in the South who find themselves in the catastrophic situation of the tornado aftermath think that that is true today? Do you? Is it time for NAR to step up to give compassionate financial help to the Realtor® Family?
*NAR membership as reported in April NAR Town Hall Meeting on the WEB.