This communication from NAR to all Members describes the many ways NAR is working to guide and support REALTORS® and the real estate industry during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Every week, you’ll find up-to-date, relevant information on how to ensure your health and safety, the virus’ impact on the economy and your business, its impact on NAR activities, and what NAR is doing to help.
- NAR’s latest Economic Pulse Flash Survey finds that more than 3 in 4 REALTORS® currently working with sellers this week—76%—reported their clients haven’t reduced listing prices to attract buyers, according to a new survey from NAR. That’s up from 74% who said the same a week ago. The survey also concludes that 3 in 10 REALTORS® said they were able to complete nearly all aspects of real estate transactions while complying with social distancing. See the survey for more results.
- NAR also today released its 2020 REALTORS® and Sustainability Report. It finds that 7 in 10 REALTORS® said energy efficiency promotion in listings was very or somewhat valuable, and a majority of REALTORS®—61%—found clients were at least somewhat interested in sustainability. See the report for more results.
- NAR also released its Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI), showing that pending home sales fell in March, seeing expected declines as a result of the coronavirus outbreak. The PHSI decreased 20.8% to 88.2 in March. Year-over-year, contract signings declined 16.3%. An index of 100 is equal to the level of contract activity in 2001.
- As Congressional leadership debate future economic relief legislation, NAR continues to advocate for priorities for REALTORS® in the bill, including future funding and small-business assistance, tax and regulatory changes, and new technology like remote online notarization (RON). The Senate is scheduled to be in session next week, while the House is scheduled to return to session May 12.
- NAR is one of the leading industry voices in support of a bill allowing for RON. Many states have already acted on this front, but the nation needs a uniform federal standard. Using RON would allow Americans to complete loan transactions without jeopardizing their health. A recent CNBC article showed the average American can save $277 a month with a refinancing.
- The REALTOR® Party has released a new resource for members to help homeowners who are struggling to meet their loan obligations. The “Protect Your Investment” brochure encourages homeowners to work with REALTORS® and housing counselors and offer guidance on options provided by lenders. For more info, go here.
- Join the Urban Roundtable to hear speakers discuss how communities may change in response to COVID-19 and into the future. Speakers include representatives from the American Planning Association and Toole Design Group. To register, visit here. Questions? Contact Hugh Morris at 202-383-1278.
- New Resources are available to REALTORS® as part of our Right Tools, Right Now initiative, which provides free and discounted services to our members to enhance your professional development while stay-at-home orders impact the market. New tools and resources that have been recently added include new webinars, offers from REACH companies, and discounts on social media plans.
- Registration is OPEN for NAR’s first-ever Virtual REALTORS® Legislative Meetings. Join us May 12-14 for nine free conference sessions focused on education and forums that put members first and provide support to you and your business during uncertain times. In addition, some governance meetings now through May 15 will be streamed for observance on our virtual platform. Register for free here.
- As part of the Legislative Meetings, this year’s Legislative & Political Forum (May 12) features Rahm Emanuel, former mayor of Chicago and White House Chief of Staff for President Obama, and Chris Christie, former governor of New Jersey. Together they’ll discuss the current political climate and take stock of the current administration and the upcoming election.
- Other highlights of the Legislative Meetings include this year’s Regulatory Issues Forum (May 12) will focus on legislative and regulatory responses to the COVID- 19 public health crisis with remarks from key administration officials including Labor Secretary Eugene Scalia and Small Business Administrator Jovita Carranza. They’ll each provide relevant and timely updates about resources and support for REALTORS®.
- NAR is releasing the next wave of social messages from our Consumer Ad Campaign (CAC), sharing REALTORS® commitment to providing expertise and guidance to consumers in today’s challenging environment. These optimistic messages, to be posted on Monday, May 4, tell consumers that business is open, interest rates are low, and REALTORS® have the resources and expertise to help right now. Find the assets here.
- NAR Immediate Past President John Smaby recorded a video for our “Pivot in Place” series where he highlights REALTORS® who are serving their communities in impactful ways during the COVID-19 crisis, and reflect on the importance of sharing your story.
- The CDC recently released a new fact sheet with guidance for your health and safety during this pandemic. It provides life-saving information in six areas: 1) Know about COVID-19; 2) Know how COVID-19 is spread; 3) Protect yourself and others from COVID-19; 4) Practice social distancing; 5) Prevent the spread of COVID-19 if you are sick, and 6) Know your risk for severe illness. See here for more information.
- REALTORS® have a special responsibility to take all necessary health and safety precautions, including those ordered by your state or locality, whichever are more strict. Even if real estate is deemed essential in your area, we strongly encourage you to use virtual showings and limit in-person activity in all other aspects of the real estate transaction to get us through this crisis. For a list of states that have implemented stay-at-home orders, visit here.
- In keeping with our Core Value of “Members First,” NAR has released “Coronavirus: A Guide for REALTORS®” online to provide guidance to members on some common transactional issues due to COVID-19, including open house guidance. The guide is updated frequently, please find it here.
- A new Member Hotline is available. Please call our new hotline at 1-800-874- 6500 to be connected to a Member Support Representative who can assist with your questions and concerns related to COVID-19. See below for more information.
- In addition to our hotline, stay in touch with the latest on our advocacy efforts on the pandemic by texting COVID19 to 30644. You’ll get information on how we’re fighting for members, and how recently passed legislation affects you. The response you’ll receive will send you to visit NAR.Realtor/coronavirus for the latest information.