We had a fabulous turnout for the annual business meeting of the Berkshire County Board of REALTORS and the Multiple Listing Service on October 24th at the Proprietor’s Lodge. CEO, Sandy Carroll kicked off the meeting by welcoming our awesome Platinum Sponsors, and thanking everyone for attending, as well as verifying quorum counts for both our REALTOR and our MLS voting matters.
It was an honor to again recognize the outstanding contributions made by our REALTOR of the Year, Nick Geranios, to our board and as well as his REALTOR Spirit award. And we give a huge shout out to Jessie Downer, our REALTOR Good Neighbor award winner. Congratulations to both who were also honored at the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS at their awards dinner in September.
President, Jay Nocher – what a year! He reported that 267 volunteers worked on committees to support and further the business of real estate in Berkshire County. The contracts and forms committee, chaired by Pam Roberts, has worked to modify contracts to satisfy business needs and will continue to develop a Buyer Agency agreement in 2023. These agreements are suggested as a best business practice. He also welcomed and thanked Jose Larios for his work as chair of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committee. The DEI committee asks that all members become familiar with our Field Guide to Fair Housing brochure and made sure copies were provided for all attending. If you would like a copy, or need more copies, please contact staff and we’ll be sure to get some out to you!
Jay further reported that all REALTORS must have completed their Code of Ethics training by December 31, 2024 (between Jan 1, 2022 and Dec 31, 2024). In addition, beginning January 1, 2025, and following the same 3-year cycle as the Code of Ethics, all REALTORS must complete Fair Housing training. The Board will offer these programs – and all CE remains FREE to Berkshire REALTORS in 2024.
There will be a dues increase in 2024. Your local dues will increase by $16 to $270 with total dues in 2024 at $667. Still lower than our neighboring associations, Jay outlined all of the services that you receive as a member of the Berkshire Board.
Staff has fielded 14,402 call, emails or texts so far this year – an average of 523 calls per month. We have sent out 384 happy birthday wishes and 584 license renewal notices. And, our REcap has had 21,052 reads. Whew!
We recognized our 2023 Major RPAC Investors – Pam Roberts, Anne Meczywor and Debbie Dwyer who is also in the RPAC Hall of Fame for lifetime contributions of over $25,000. The REALTOR Community Service Committee has been a huge success this year – because of the dedication of our committee members; Chair, Jessie Downer, and the involvement of our membership. A Huge round of applause for charitable giving of $38,600 so far in 2023.
Registration is open for our upcoming classes and events. Please be sure to register so you don’t miss out!
Field Ramification of Buyer Agency and the DOJ Lawsuits
November 2, 2023
9-11:00 a.m. – Zoom
Financing Continuing Education
November 7, 2023
9-11:00 a.m. – Zoom
Real Estate Brokerage Code of Ethics CE
December 5, 2023
9-11:30 a.m. – Zoom
Holiday Installation Cocktail Party
December 6, 2023
6-9:00 p.m. – Berkshire Hills Country Club
$40 per person
Able to register as individual, table of 8 or table of 10
With quorum present, President Nocher entertained a motion to accept the 2023 Slate of Officers as presented by the Nominating Committee. This motion was so moved, seconded and open for discussion. Hearing none and with no objections, the 2023 Slate of Officers were elected to their respective positions. Congratulations to the 2024 Board of REALTORS, Board of Directors:
Having concluded the business of the Board of REALTORS, the meeting was turned over to MLS President, Eric Steuernagle.
Eric announced that the MLS Board of Directors unanimously accepted a recommendation by the Rental Taskforce, chaired by Mike Hernandez and Jay Nocher, to create a new property type in the MLS for residential rentals. We anticipate that this property type will be available in the first quarter of 2024. He was also happy to announce that we will be contracting with a tax provider to reinstate tax auto population into the MLS while entering a new listing! This new feature will result in an increase in MLS fees to $35 per month in 2024.
Both the MLS and Board leadership, along with Sandy Carroll, attended the CMLS meeting in October where they sat with industry leaders and learned much about change that is coming. Your leadership and staff have got you!
With quorum present, President Steuernagle entertained a motion to accept the 2023 Slate of Officers as presented by the Nominating Committee. This motion was so moved, seconded and open for discussion. Hearing none and with no objections or nominations from the floor, the 2023 Slate of Officers were elected to their respective positions. Congratulations to the 2024 MLS Board of Directors:
A wrap up discussion of the pending lawsuits with Q&A followed. The Leaders presented their take-aways from attending the national meetings, zoom legal meetings and digging deep into the headlines. This leadership team prides itself on a balanced and honest message. They all expressed that we have challenges to come, but are also all committed to making the best decisions with the most information on hand as possible. We pledge to be there for the brokers and members in offering training for agents, on keeping sound policies and practices at the forefront, creating and modifying Berkshire Contracts and forms so they are responsive to emerging business needs, and engaging and communicating with our business partners and ensuring we are posed to make the market work in the years ahead. We are also a REALTOR organization that is passionate about the organization you and the brokers before you created almost 80 years ago. We will continue to think always of business needs and consumer needs when setting our future direction. We will not, however, have any knee jerk reactions while so much is pending and unclear from a legal perspective. We ask you all to stay engaged and help shape the direction.
We thank our platinum sponsors who provided some amazing raffle prizes. We concluded the meeting by drawing from our scavenger hunt tickets for a year of 2024 MLS services, which was won by Nick Geranios and finally, our 2024 Membership Raffle, won by Corey Bishop.
We look forward to serving you in 2023 and a great 2024!