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Realtors have vital role to play in rebuilding after Sandy

Commentary: Your town needs your expertise like never before

Next week the National Association of Realtors opens its annual convention in Orlando, with thousands of its members' homes underwater -- or washed away completely. Many Realtor members living in the northeastern U.S. will not make it for the first time in years. One out of four American families is in various stages of recovery from the incredible disruption of everyday life Hurricane Sandy delivered during a lumbering visit through the neighborhood. In some cases, Sandy may have left a boat blocking their driveway. Or maybe they have a diabetic child who needs insulin, and even if a drug store is open somewhere there's no gas in the car. I was going to write a column about Sandy's economic impacts, but after seeing television interviews of desperate young mothers and grandmothers staring into the camera begging for help, I realized they did not care about the impact this storm would have on the price of lumber or the potential surge in jobs. Standing in the cold where your home u...