Finding The Value In Membership
Tuesday, July 16, 2013
Orlando REALTOR® | JulyAugust 2013
By Steve Merchant
As business owners, we realize the importance of minimizing our expenses and maximizing our return on any business dollar spent. In that light, I’m always evaluating my expenses and looking to find additional value. Recently, I’ve been analyzing the many benefits that I receive through my REALTOR® memberships. Frankly, I’ll tell you, there’s so much more value than I realized.
On the ORRA website (www.orlandorealtors.org), you’ll find the member benefits section. The website does an admirable job highlighting some of our key member benefits. Personally, I see the value in each of the emphasized benefits. I have always recognized the value of our educational classes. Even with my busy schedule this year, I continue to attend many classes. Just this Friday, approximately 100 fellow ORRA members and I attended a free property management class where an attorney panel provided the latest changes to the Landlord and Tenant Act. I'm looking forward to attending our annual Real Estate Law Symposium in September and the Certified International Property Specialist (CIPS) course in October. I'm looking forward to the three great instructors, especially our wonderful ORRA Chairman-elect Zola Szerencses.
Check out some of our other benefits: professional standards, advocacy, community outreach, communications, research, and networking just to name a few. I could write an article entirely on each of those benefits regarding the positive impact on my personal business. For example, our communications department publishes statistics each month that make for great local housing market updates for your sphere. Regarding the benefits of networking, I would proclaim the positive impact is priceless. When a loan, title, insurance, inspection, commercial real estate, property management, international tax, or any other issue is beyond my scope, there are affiliate experts and fellow REALTORS® willing to help.
There's so much more. There's even deals and discounts offered to members through ORRA, Florida REALTORS®, and NAR. Consider one of my favorites, the Florida REALTORS® Legal Hotline. I like to think of it as a 100 percent discount on legal assistance.
Fellow REALTOR® Laurel Kellett recently introduced me to the Lowe's REALTOR® benefits program. Through this NAR program, Lowe’s sends an e-coupon worth 10 percent off to a list of people that you provide. The e-coupons, branded with your info, become a marketing tool as well.
All of the discounts and deals offered by all three of your REALTOR® associations are gathered together on the ORRA website. Just in time for summer there’s a new ORRA discount, a fun BOGO deal with Wet n’ Wild. Enjoy!
ORRA Chairman of the Board Steve Merchant, Global Realty International, is available at firstname.lastname@example.org.