NAR: If It’s in the MLS, Share the Address
The National Association of REALTORS®’ Board of Directors on Friday selected next year’s leadership, approved a 2022 budget that forecasts 1.43 million members, and kept 2022 national dues at $150.
The subject that generated the most debate at the board meeting was a policy proposal to require that residential property addresses be disclosed and available to MLS participants and subscribers when a listing is filed. The board decided the policy provides adequate protection for sellers requesting privacy and voted in favor of the proposal.
The board meeting capped off the virtual 2021 REALTORS® Legislative Meetings. For the second year in a row, the meetings were held virtually, this year attracting 15,000 registrants compared to the typical 9,000 attendees. From May 3–13, members had the opportunity to attend streaming forums, committee meetings, education sessions, and a virtual trade expo.
While most of the directors were participating in Friday’s meeting remotely, the 2021 NAR Leadership Team attended in person at NAR’s Chicago headquarters—a sign of changing pandemic conditions. “The Leadership Team could not be more pleased to come together after 14 months apart to celebrate this renewal and signal that soon, we’ll all be together,” NAR President Charlie Oppler said.
NAR CEO Bob Goldberg added: “We’re planning for several upcoming events this year to be in person with a hybrid component. We’ll engage more members than ever before.”
MLS Policy Changes
Following a debate centered around the need to maintain the accuracy and transparency of the multiple listing service, the board approved a policy requiring submission of addresses for all listed residential properties. The policy states that “the property address for all residential listings filed with the MLS must be disclosed and available to MLS participants and subscribers at the time the listing is submitted to the MLS. Where an address does not exist, a parcel identification number or legal description of the property’s location must be filed with the MLS.” Proponents of the rule emphasized that the change doesn’t preclude sellers who need privacy from keeping their address off of publicly accessible displays of their property.
Multiple Listing Issues and Policy Committee Chair Jon Coile, who presented the recommendation to the board, said the change is in keeping with the three tenets of the MLS: efficiency, transparency, and collaboration.
In another MLS policy change, the board voted to allow MLSs to prohibit display of the sales price, at local discretion, in IDX and VOW data feeds in states where sales data isn’t publicly accessible through government records. It allows participants and subscribers to display other sales data publicly, creating a richer experience for the consumer. This change doesn’t affect local MLS rules about display of property listing photos after a property sells.
Improving Member Records
The board approved several recommended changes to the membership records system designed to improve individual records and eliminate obsolete data. For example, members will have the option of adding a preferred pronoun to their member records by choosing from a list of values (she/her, he/him, and they/them). NAR’s Association Executives Committee, which brought the recommendations forward, noted that adding a preferred pronoun field promotes inclusion and enables the association to address members in their preferred way.
Another change: The required business email field in a member’s record will need to include an individual business address, not a shared address. For those who want to include a shared address, there will be a new, optional field. These actions will eliminate duplicate records, clean up member data, and improve communication, ensuring the correct members receive voting and invoicing notices, for example.
Implementation of the changes is expected by the end of 2022. But members can check and change their personal information (email, home address, home phone, cell phone) anytime at nar.realtor under “My Account” (sign-in required).
New Federal Tax Policy
Under a new federal taxation policy approved by the board, NAR will go on record opposing any tax on unrealized gains at a person’s death and supporting an estate tax exemption no lower than the current law’s $11.7 million per person. The policy serves as a directive for NAR’s advocacy team in their work on Capitol Hill.
The action comes after the Biden administration earlier this month proposed the American Families Plan, which, besides raising the top income tax rate on very high earners to 39.6%, would tax unrealized capital gains over $1 million per person at the owner’s death, effectively lessening the amount of real estate and other assets that could be inherited. The administration’s proposal would still allow heirs to take a step-up in basis to fair market value on inherited assets.
Under current law, there’s no tax on unrealized gains at a person’s death. Instead, a decedent’s estate is subject to an estate tax on assets over a certain level. The estate tax has varied widely over the past 25 years. Current law grants an estate tax exemption for up to $11.7 million per person. That amount is set to revert to $5 million (plus adjustment for inflation) in 2026.
With this change, NAR retains its policy supporting repeal of the estate tax and retention of the step-up in basis. But if the estate tax remains in place, NAR supports keeping the current $11.7 million exemption.
New Leadership Elected
Tracy Kasper, a REALTOR® from Eagle, Idaho, was elected NAR’s first vice president for 2022. Her opponent was Mike McGrew of Lawrence, Kan., who served as NAR treasurer from 2014 to 2016. Kasper was NAR’s vice president of advocacy under 2019 President John Smaby. The election puts her on track to be NAR president in 2024.
As part of a consent agenda, directors elected Kenny Parcell of Salem, Utah—this year’s first vice president—to the role of president-elect for 2022, and they elected the 2022 regional vice presidents. President-elect Leslie Rouda Smith of Plano, Texas, automatically ascends to the presidency in 2022, and Nancy Lane of Brandon, Miss., continues her two-year term as treasurer.
Social Media Audit for Appointed Leaders
The board made it effective immediately that candidates for appointed association leadership positions are subject to a social media audit to ensure their online history doesn’t raise issues that could negatively affect NAR. Currently, the Credentials and Campaign Rules manual requires a social audit of candidates for elected office. The appointed positions affected are vice president of association affairs, vice president of advocacy, REALTOR® Party director, REALTOR® Party Fundraising Trustees chair, RPAC Major Investor Council chair, RPAC Participation Council chair, and committee liaisons.
Under the new policy, the Credentials and Campaign Rules Committee can request that the NAR Leadership Team, not the CCRC, make a final ruling on the findings in an appointed leader’s audit.
Distinguished Service Award Winners Announced
Gail Hartnett, CRS, PMN, MRP, of Boise, Idaho, and Larry Keating, ABR, ABRM, CRB, AHWD, of Jefferson City, Mo., are the 2021 recipients of the Distinguished Service Award. The accolade is the highest honor, aside from the presidency, NAR bestows on a member. Hartnett and Keating will be formally recognized at the directors’ meeting in November.
Here’s the full list of 2022 leadership for NAR:
- President Leslie Rouda Smith, ABR, AHWD, CIPS, CRB, CRS, e-PRO, PMN, C2EX, Plano, Texas
- President-elect Kenny Parcell, ABR, CRS, C2EX, Salem, Utah
- First Vice President Tracy Kasper, AHWD, CIPS, CRS , GRI, SFR, C2EX, Eagle, Idaho
- Immediate Past President Charlie Oppler, AHWD, C2EX, Franklin Lakes, N.J.
- Treasurer Nancy M. Lane, AHWD, CCIM, RENE, C2EX, Brandon, Miss.
- Vice President of Advocacy Kaki Lybbert, CRS, C2EX, Denton, Texas
- Vice President of Association Affairs Shannon King, GRI, Kailua, Hawaii
- CEO Bob Goldberg, EPRO
Regional Vice Presidents
- Region 1: Kimberly Allard, ABR, AHWD, CRS, EPRO, GRI, PSA, SRS, Holbrook, Mass.
- Region 2: Frank Jacovini, EPRO, GRI, Philadelphia
- Region 3: Russ Boyce, CRS, GRI, Waldorf, Md.
- Region 4: Brian Copeland, ABR, AHWD, CRS, EPRO, GRI, C2EX, Madison, Tenn.
- Region 5: Ryan Brashear, AHWD, GRI, Augusta, Ga.
- Region 6: Pete Kopf, AHWD, C2EX, Cincinnati
- Region 7: Peter Sveum, CRB, GRI, Stoughton, Wis.
- Region 8: Bart Miller, CRS, C2EX, Rapid City, S.D.
- Region 9: Brenda Oliver, AHWD, GRI, PMN, C2EX, Odessa, Mo.
- Region 10: Logan Morris, CRB, C2EX, Leesville, La.
- Region 11: Rick Southwick, CRS, Ogden, Utah
- Region 12: Dale Chumbley, AHWD, CIPS, CRS, Vancouver, Wash.
- Region 13: Ziggy Zicarelli, CRS, GRI, Tarzana, Calif.
NAR’s next board meeting is scheduled for Monday, Nov. 15, 2021, at the REALTORS® Conference & Expo in San Diego.