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News & Information: Orlando REALTOR® magazine - President's Message

Here For You

Tuesday, May 14, 2013  
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Orlando REALTOR® | May/June 2013

By Steve Merchant

Recently I had a mortgage question, but finding the answer wasn’t a problem. In fact, it was easily answered by one of our affiliate lenders. She not only knew the answer, she salvaged the contract, closed the loan in 10 days, and created one thankful, happy homeowner.

When I have mortgage, title, inspection, insurance, etc., question, I often turn to ORRA’s affiliate members. I have friendly relationships with many of our affiliate members, and I am welcome to go to them for advice. So are you!

Affiliate members are super accessible and love to be helpful to REALTORS®. They come to meetings at the association and serve on committees. They are always at ORRA’s membership events, welcoming people into the room and exhibiting in the pre-function area. In fact, they more than likely planned the entire event.

I’d always known that ORRA’s affiliate members are an asset to the association, but it wasn’t until I became involved in a leadership role that I grasped the enormity of just what this group contributes. The ORRA Affiliate Forum, capably led this year by Chairman Cat Brower with Mortgagee Title Services, Inc., has a full slate of projects and activities to offer REALTORS®:

  • The forum organizes each Eye On Orlando membership luncheon, which always includes a terrific speaker or presentation, and the ABCs of Real Estate series. ABCs are offered for free six times a year and cover affiliate-related topics. The most recent ABCs class drew a sellout audience to hear about permits, code enforcement, and municipal liens.
  • Have you ever come to the association’s holiday open house? (If not, you should!) Yep, this festivity is produced by the affiliate forum, too.
  • No event takes more months of planning and coordinating than the annual ORRA expo. The forum is behind this one as well. In fact they are already working on the 2013 expo, which will be held on October 3.
  • The forum contributes to ORRA’s community service efforts. They collect and deliver donations for A Gift For Teaching, and they back ORRA’s participation in the 2013 American Heart Association Heart Walk.
  • And, of course, our affiliates also support the association financially by sponsoring classes, advertising in the magazine, purchasing exhibit booths, and donating auction items.

Naturally, I’d like to remind you to consider our affiliates when you or your clients are in the market for real-estate related products and services. (Locate them here, via the "Find A Professional” function located under the "Consumers” section of Better yet, come to some ORRA functions, network, and build some valuable relationships. Our affiliates are here for you.

ORRA Chairman of the Board Steve Merchant, Global Realty International, is available at

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