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National Association of Realtors downsizing by 10%

NAR going through layoffs?

Rumors of layoffs have been flying for months, quietly echoing in the halls of the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the largest trade association in the world. Chicago computers have been humming with updating of resumes as NAR staff anxiously awaits the possibility of their job on the guillotine.

NAR Chief Executive Officer, Dale Stinton informed us that internally, leadership and staff were told in March that as part of the annual budget process for 2012, NAR was going to “reduce headcount (mostly through attrition) by about 10 percent.”

Stinton indicated the cuts would not have a major impact on programming and that NAR is already “well on [their] way to achieve this reduction this year so that the benefit of the savings will be realized going into 2012.” Stinton also notes that this move is “sound fiscal and program management – nothing more nothing less.”

2012 budgeting

Stinton says, “We are actually ahead of budget this year and we will be balanced for the year just as we have done in 25 of the last 26 years.” He notes that “Basically we’re just asking staff to do more with less. Our members are doing it – we should prioritize our resources and do the same.”

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NAR critics and NAR supporters

NAR critics have pushed for years for reduced budgets and streamlined use of their dues and elimination of wasteful spending and would prefer further cuts, while supporters point to NAR’s track record of balancing their budget and that not adding staff back to positions lost through natural attrition is a responsible means of budgeting.

It was announced in May 2011 that a vote passed for NAR dues to increase by 50% in order to fund The Realtor Party Political Survival Initiative (RPPSI). All funds raised through this dues increase are required as part of the RPPSI package to go directly to political initiatives, therefore is a separate budget item from salaries.

Tara Steele is the News Director at The American Genius, covering entrepreneur, real estate, technology news and everything in between. If you'd like to reach Tara with a question, comment, press release or hot news tip, simply click the link below.

48 Comments

48 Comments

  1. Chris Michaud

    July 25, 2011 at 9:06 am

    It's about time the REALTOR org starts doing what every other business had had to do. They actually need to clean house, and bring in new thinking. The old thinking is tied into an archaic business model being protected by the "body shop" proponents; more bodies, more dues and fees both for the organization and the 500 gorillas who have learned to profit with marginal mediocrity rather than exemplary excellence. That's why we continue to have agents who "turn over" 80% within 5 years in most of the country.

    Instead of promoting fee for services, hybrid business models that would actually save the consumer money and provide agents a better way to make a living, the old contingent commission theology prevails. that hasn't changed in the past 250 years.

    REALTORS also had the opportunity early on to be the technology leaders and instead created first very proprietary software that didn't work, then came kicking and screaming to the table when the likes of Zillow and Trulia really came on board. REALTOR sponsored MLS' STILL limit access to data that consumers can now get online elsewhere under the guise of "confidentiality." the real reason of course is to get the consumer to contact a REALTOR. that worked in the past because they controlled the data – but no more.

    REALTOR leaders never understood, nor do they today, that quality agent services can never be replaced by a database. Certain ease of use and access functions can replace $7 labor that the average agent gets paid too much for, but cannot replace the anecdotal and holistic market information that an experienced agent has attained through their experience in a given market.

    I heard someone say the other day that there wasn't one icebox company that invented a refrigerator because they are so short-sighted in their present reality. I now suspect that the REALTOR organization itself has to become defunct and a new and improved organization replace it that is adept and in sync with today's technologies and works to change the archaic business model it continues to promote.

  2. Grant Hammond

    July 25, 2011 at 5:45 pm

    So, the NAR is downsizing, but I just got a notice that my 2012 NAR dues are going up. Hummm? What ever happened to their National MLS? That should would be helpful!

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