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News & Information: Orlando REALTOR® magazine - At the Closing Table

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Friday, August 31, 2012  
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Rep. John Wood, REALTOR®

Real estate sits in the catbird seat
when a REALTOR® is
a legislator

Orlando REALTOR® | September

Rep. John Wood (R-Haines City) is both a legislator and a REALTOR®, one of three REALTORS® who hold a seat in the Florida House of Representatives (a fourth REALTOR® holds a seat in the Florida Senate). He spoke to Orlando REALTOR® about his experience in cross referencing REALTOR® with legislator.

Q. How does being a REALTOR® work to your advantage in your job as a legislator?

A. As a homegrown REALTOR® and businessman with deep roots in Central Florida, I’ve had the opportunity to learn first-hand how critically important a healthy housing market is to our state’s overall economy and future. I bring this insight and knowledge to my role as a state representative, and work to help fellow lawmakers better understand the complex issues surrounding our challenging housing market.

Q. What issue to you see to be of critical concern to REALTORS® in the Orlando area?

A Without a doubt, the issue of home and property insurance is of critical concern to REALTORS® and homeowners in the Central Florida area. In fact, I would rate it as a top concern. The availability and personal affordability of home insurance is a huge factor in the successful sale of a home, and this issue deserves careful consideration and attention. Unfortunately, a complex regulatory environment and historical rate suppression in the private insurance market have reduced the options available to homeowners seeking insurance coverage. And further adding to our challenges is the fact that Citizens’ rates are far below the private market, and haven’t been allowed to increase to an appropriate level due to governmental caps.

Q. What actions do you believe REALTORS® can take to ensure a favorable resolution of that issue?

A. I encourage all REALTORS® to get involved in the political and legislative process, and reach out to build relationships with their elected officials. Remember, elected officials have a lot of people and issues competing for their attention. Earn your right to be heard by becoming a trusted source for advice and counsel. We need to work for legislation that promotes a healthy economy and housing market, and encourages private insurers to invest their capital in our state.

Q. What do you believe is the greatest benefit that REALTORS® can reap through involvement in the political and legislative arenas?

A. When REALTORS® get involved in the legislative process, everyone benefits because we are doing our part to bring a healthy housing market and thriving economy to our state. Our efforts in the political and legislative arenas have a huge impact on our state’s future, and ultimately we can help bring the dream of homeownership to many Central Florida families!

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