Realtor membership: What true loyalty demands

  • A number of current Realtors would choose to opt out of membership if they could and still function in the real estate business.
  • Trade association strength should be measured by member loyalty to the mission of the organization rather than simple membership numbers or revenue.
  • Loyalty cannot be mandated. It's a choice that can only be earned through a value proposition that aligns with its members' business needs.

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Last week, I provided thoughts on why some Realtors believe that their dues are in essence a forced “tax” on real estate professionals either because their MLS requires Realtor membership or because their broker requires it as a result of the National Association of Realtor’s broker-centric dues billing policy. The many thoughtful comments to that article bear out the various perspectives on this issue. I encourage you to read them at some point (see link above). They bear out what we already know -- some number of current Realtors would choose to opt out of membership if they could still effectively be “in the business.” To me, “in the business” means two things. First, having access to the local MLS and the local standard forms (the argument that MLS is somehow uniquely tied to the Realtor association value proposition is over and is happening across the country in big metro markets). Second, most agents are independent contractors and as such, they should ...