I just returned from a week away attending the National Association of REALTORS® Conference in San Francisco. This is an annual event that draws thousands of REALTORS® from not only the U.S. but also from around the world. This year there were approximately 1,400 from other countries with several hundred of those from Canada. Both the Canadian Real Estate Association and Royal LePAGE Canada held evening events for those of us in attendance.
The real estate profession has undergone dramatic changes and it continues to be transformed by consumer’s expectations, ever changing market conditions, new business models affecting the traditional MLS® system and perhaps most significantly by technology. All of these factors are continuing to impact the role of real estate professionals. Real estate is no different than any other industry or profession. While the traditional 80/20 rule has applied with 20% of the REALTORS® doing 80% of the business, it’s now more like 90/10 and with further consolidation of the business sure to happen, 95/5 is ultimately how the distribution of listings and sales will invariably end up.
In order to effectively meets the changing demands of clients, I view attending conferences such as this as being imperative to both understanding the market changes that are happening as well as learning the necessary skills and initiatives that you need to implement in order to be of relevant importance. In the Home Cents Help Tips section of my website I have a piece titled "Education Keeps REALTOR® Standards High. Over the three days I attended 11 different seminars and while it is a somewhat intense learning environment it is also very invigorating and stimulating. Many of this year’s sessions dealt with the increasing importance that social media is having on our business. This blog is in fact the result of my attending the NAR Conference back in 2007. Since that time I have tried to provide content that will be of some material value to my readers whether it is a real estate related matter, community/municipal affairs or just some odds and ends that I feel may be of interest. Recently I started a second blog pertaining to the luxury home market titled “Southern Georgian Bay Carriage Trade Homes,” be sure to check it out.
The keynote speaker at this year’s conference was Hilary Clinton. Mrs. Clinton shared with us her and husband Bill’s experience with real estate from their first home to occupying the Governor’s mansion in Arkansas to the White House. It was interesting to learn that since leaving the White House, the Clinton’s real estate purchases have all been made conditional on approval by the Secret Service as they are the ones tasked with guarding and defending the home of the former President and his family forever.
As I have mentioned in prior posts, the U.S. does not have a nation-wide MLS® system such as what we have in Canada. It is not uncommon for one state to have severalMLS® systems and our American REALTOR® counterparts are envious of what we have and the ease with which it allows consumers to find properties virtually anywhere in Canada. Sometimes it’s nice to have one up on our neighbours to the south.