No one is going to protect our industry if we're not going to do it

Hagan Stone brought home the growing importance of the Realtor® Party and its Political Action Committee during a two-day visit to the Tri-Cities in mid-June.  Stone, a Nashville Realtor® is chairman of the National Association of Realtors'® Political Action Committee (RPAC).

We're really proud of the culture you are creating 

The first day was dominated by extra-curricular activities combined with the advocacy message.

Northeast Tennessee Association of Realtors'® (NETAR) members hosted Stone at Off the Grid in Elizabethton. They got the adrenaline pumping by riding ziplines and jumping off five-story towers before the business at hand. That business is investing in their profession's advocacy efforts. The Elizabethton event was followed by a NETAR Young Professional's DARE-OKE. Check out the links at the bottom of the page for photos and video.

The next day at NETAR's Membership Meeting at the MeadowView Resort and Conference Member Hagan told members, "It's fun to be here, it's fun to be in a place where you feel like you have so many friends."

Hagan recognized NETAR'sefforts by saying that he was "really proud of the culture you are creating here when it comes to RPAC. You already have a great culture that has been created over 20 years. On the state level, we recognize what you're doing and appreciate it so, thank you."

"We're one of the only industries left in America where you can work as hard and as long as you want and make as much money as you want to make. One of the reasons we can do that is we have the number one grass-roots advocacy programs in the United States when it comes to RPAC. We're the envy of every trade association in the country because of our boots on the ground effort. No cares for community like a Realtor®, no question about it."

Hagan and delegations of Realtors® from local and state associations across the nation recently returned from a lobbying trip to Washington D.C. It was a successful effort, but not conclusive because political advocacy is an ongoing effort to promote renewal of the flood insurance program, to preserve the mortgage interest deduction and other programs that promote and enhance homeownership.

Advocacy is getting extra attention this year because "we knew no matter who won the (presidential) election that the focus in Congress would turn to taxation and how that will affect homeowners and property owners across the United States."

He personalized the effect of two programs for the audience.

The average Realtor® in the United States makes $30,000 a year, he said. If the mortgage insurance deduction goes away $8,500 of that will be gone. If flood insurance doesn't get reauthorized 1,400 closing a day won't happen. And, if flood insurance goes away, that $30,000 is reduced by $5,000. "Could you stay in business?" he asked.

Flood insurance has special significance for Hagan. His home was one of the 11,000 properties effected by the 2010 Nashville flood. That event caused more than $2 billion in private property damage and $120 million in public infrastructure damage.

No cares for community like a Realtor®,
no question about it.

Advocacy to preserve homeownership program and homeowner rights are at the core of both the profession and culture of real estate professional. “We have to be sure that we can still work for our clients and customers and help them make decisions to include us in their lives. If we don’t do that, we’re finished.” Mortgage bankers did not protect their industry during the recession and the recovery, and now they will tell you that they are behind our program because we're looking out for the industry, he added

 Nobody is going to protect our industry if we're not going to do it. Right?

Times-New video interview


Off The Grid photos

A little free fall 

Kingsport Times-News coverage