Technology: A Message from new NAR CEO

An Open Message From NAR CEO Bob Goldberg: (Facebook w/comments) It’s been said that the one constant in life is change. And that’s certainly true of the real estate industry, whether we’re talking about consumer expectations, business models, public policy environment, market conditions, or the role of Realtor® associations.

To stay ahead of industry evolution and disruption, we must all agree that this industry is not the same as it was when NAR was founded in 1908 – it’s not even the same as it was in 2008! Just a few of the issues we all face:

  • Industry and technology disrupters want to pull the agent and broker out of the equation.
  • Venture capitalists spent $1.7 billion last year on startup investments that influence how brokers, agents, lenders, and other industry professionals manage their businesses.
  • Portals are garnering power and pushing for control.
  • Brokers are losing control of their intellectual property.
  • New broker models are challenging profitability.

All of these developments are shaping our industry − these aren’t empty threats. But if we choose to bury our heads in the sand now, then we are burying with us the incredible work of those who came before us: We are at risk of losing NAR’s enduring legacy.

We cannot and we will not let outside forces dictate the rules of our own industry. The real estate industry belongs to Realtors®. We shouldn’t dread disruption; Realtors® must drive it. To do this, we will build on the successes we have already achieved.

Case in point: Second Century Ventures and the REach program. NAR launched these nearly a decade ago to identify and cultivate companies that had the potential to influence the industry. These initiatives have since grown to include partnerships with 40 companies, who now bring incredible products and value to our members…40 companies who are now Realtor® advocates, rather than Realtor® disrupters!

I am a big believer of a philosophy known as NIH – Not Invented Here. NAR does not need to be in the business of building technology solutions ourselves. It is not our core competency, and we cannot keep pace. So let’s go out and find the best in the world, the best in class, and partner with these companies to do it for us.

To that end, we are establishing a new NAR team – the Strategic Business and Technology Group – led by a new Senior Vice President whose team will focus on ensuring that NAR remains at the forefront of business and technology solutions. This group will ensure we form the right partnerships with the right alliances to position Realtors® for continued success.

I anticipate hiring this new SVP in the next several months and will be sure to introduce all of you to him/her when we bring the successful person on board.

Another area I feel strong about is continuing to push for MLS consolidation. ( Where it makes sense to the participants in their respective areas)
This effort can help with market efficiencies and hopeful lower costs for our members and Brokers.
Later this week I will cover Demographics and impacts.

Again I am honored and privileged to serve our members and industry partners.


P.S. The next message will be about Demographic Impacts and Member Engagement