Weekly 5-22-13

Illinois REALTOR® Weekly Connection


Illinois REALTORS® Advocate Property Rights on Capitol Hill

IAR members were out in force last week at the NAR Midyear Meetings in Washington, D.C. IAR Federal Political Coordinators (FPCs) and REALTOR® advocates packed Capitol Hill offices to lobby Illinois Congressional representatives on issues important to property owners and the real estate industry.  See coverage highlights including:

Last Chance to Apply for IAR Directorship 

Interested in serving as an IAR At-Large Director in 2014? Click on this link to complete the application process. Applications and supporting documentation must be received by IAR by May 22, 2013. All applicants will be interviewed by the Nominating Committee. If you have questions, contact Becky Carraher of IAR staff at rcarraher@iar.org or by telephone at 217-391-4803.

Industry News & Trends

NAR Board OKs Public-Facing MLS Sites as Basic Service

During Midyear meetings, the NAR Board of Directorsapproved a policy allowing MLSs to charge members for the establishment, maintenance and promotion of public-facing Web sites as part of the basic service they provide. Read more about this and other board actions from NAR

Kmiecik Named Region 7 Vice President

Congratulations to Chicago REALTOR® John C. Kmiecik, who was elected Region 7 Vice President for the National Association of REALTORS® during last week's Midyear Meetings. 

Fannie Mae: Housing to be a Tailwind for Economy

The U.S. economy is expected to reaccelerate in the second half of 2013, due in part to an improving housing market, according to Fannie Mae's latest economic outlook

HUD Closes Offices Friday, Six More Times this Summer for Sequester

As part of the federal government-wide spending cuts, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) will close all of its offices nationwide on Friday and reopen after the Memorial Day holiday. HUD will close for six more furlough days through the summer. HousingWire has the list.

IAR Successfully Lobbies for Fairer Homestead Exemption Bill

In it's initial form, Senate Bill 41 could have caught up unsuspecting homeowners in a web of financial trouble for a mistakenly claimed homestead exemption. IAR's efforts over two years substantially changed the bill to one which allows fairer treatment of property owners. Read more in State Capitol Report.

RPAC Minute: Homeownership is Not a Loophole

Your contribution to RPAC is at work protecting the Mortgage Interest Deduction for homeowners in Illinois and across the nation. According to NAR research approximately three out of four homeowners with a mortgage — a quarter of all taxpayers — claim the Mortgage Interest Deduction (MID) and eliminating the MID would cause a 15 percent decline in the value of homes across the nation. Just $20 to RPAC can make a difference today(Disclaimer: The Illinois REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) solicits contributions from IAR members only.)

Thursday IAR Legal Webinar on Competitive Practices and Independent Decision Making

There is still time to register for this week's webinar with IAR Chief Legal Counsel Steve Bochenek and Legal Hotline Attorney Betsy Urbance on competitive practices and independent decision making and how it applies to your business. The one-hour webinar begins at 9:30 a.m. Register now.

Lunch & Learn Webinar: Ten Social Media Tips You Need to Know

Trainer Matthew Ferrara will share his top 10 tips to help you maximize Facebook and Twitter in this month's IAR "Lunch and Learn" webinar on Wednesday, May 29. You'll learn how to expand your online presence, generate interaction with friends and followers, and drive repeat business and referrals by focusing on your sphere of influence. Click here to register for this FREE, one-hour webinar that begins at noon.

Sales & Marketing

Ten Bath and Kitchen Trends to Watch

Expect to see gray color schemes, white kitchen cabinetry, glass backsplashes, LED lighting and touch-activated faucets in kitchens and bathrooms this year, according to a survey by the National Kitchen and Bath Association. NAR's Styled, Staged and Sold blog has the details.


June 1

If you are interested in serving on a committee or working group in 2014, or lending your expertise when a particular issue arises, please complete the online form and return it byJune 1, 2013.

June 18

MREDpaloozaChicagoland's largest real estate tech expo, will be held in Rosemont, Ill. Visit the IAR/RPAC booth.

July 15

RPAC Pacesetter +1 VIP Event. The first 35 RPAC Pacesetters who recruit a new RPAC Major Investor by July 15 will be our guests for an all-inclusive fireworks dinner cruise on Lake Michigan aboard the Mystic Blue Chicago yacht on Saturday, Aug. 24Get the details here or contact Kim Buscher for details kbuscher@iar.org217-391-4809