Realtors Federal Credit Union
Jay Thompson wrote about the NAR's foray into the world of controlled finances over a year ago...Eric Stegemann brought the topic up while at RE BarCamp-Phoenix, indicating it was his understanding that after a few delays, its a go. Fascinating implications.
The largest trade organization in the United States, with all its lobbyist power, is for all practical purposes a lender. Yes, yes, NAR and the Realtors (INSERT COPYRIGHT SYMBOL HERE) Federal Credit Union (RFCU) are separate and apart in all the right places but I love the messaging coming off the article on realtor.org:
Because operations will be on the Internet, REALTORS® FCU will be sensitive to the work habits and lifestyles of REALTORS®, most of whom are independent contractors who are compensated by commissions.”
All REALTORS® and their families are eligible to become REALTORS® FCU members. REALTORS® employees and staff, including NAR, state and local boards and associations, and NAR’s institutes, societies and councils are also eligible. REALTOR® clients and customers, such and home buyers and home sellers, are not eligible.
A year ago, pre-credit crisis, this was a borderline *yawn*, today its stands to be a pretty big deal. Access to a credit union is a real benefit, yielding -->credit<-- to its members using their own underwriting guidelines, separate and apart from Big Bank or gov't regulated programs.
Mortgages for those of self-employed and commission based income ilk don't (really) exist in the mainstream anymore. My opinion, which isn't usually positive when it comes to NAR's moves is just that, positive. RFCU stands to provide real benefits to the member contingency, substantiating the dues to be a Realtor (INSERT COPYRIGHT SYMBOL HERE).
Right now, clients and consumers are not eligible as the RFCU is careful to not trip the line hypocritic with their hard stance against banks getting into the real estate sales industry. But I can only wonder how 'Americas Largest Trade Orgaization' might choose to flex their lobbyist muscles in the future? NAR can actually compete with Big Bank lobbyists on Capitol Hill.
If the banks won't lend in a common sensical fashion (a common theory), then consumers can't buy...if consumers cant buy, then Realtors can't pay NARs dues...NAR loses income and voices...
Does this 'force' NAR's hands to get in the mortgage game? The argument is compelling and someone needs to check the Big Banks actions. The irony of NAR, recently accused of anti-competitive practices by the Dept of Justice, chipping away at The Banks increasing monopolistic nature would be great theater.
Do they push to allow clients access to RFCU mortgages? Now that's a neatly marketable reason of solid tangible value to use a Realtor (INSERT COPYRIGHT SYMBOL HERE).
(I know health benefits are important too...thats another subject for another day...)