One Extraordinary Year

As I've traveled the country this year, I've seen the great work REALTORS® are doing to keep business moving, support property owners, and strengthen their communities.

November 1, 2009

Your efforts have made 2009 an extraordinary year. In the past 12 months, we...

  • Won passage of the $8,000 tax credit for first-time buyers. The IRS says the credit will benefit 1.4 million buyers this year; we estimate 350,000 of those buyers wouldn’t have bought a home without it. To keep sales moving in the right direction, we’re asking that the credit be extended into next year. If, as you’re reading this, Congress hasn’t yet taken action, I hope you’ll add your support by using to contact your representatives and senators.
  • Launched a Foreclosure Prevention and Response program to provide $3 million in grants and create an information clearinghouse to help state and local REALTOR® associations address the many facets of the foreclosure crisis.
  • Worked on multiple fronts to address the broken short-sales system. We facilitated a pilot program to speed short-sales decisions in high foreclosure areas; advocated for uniformity in the process; got Fannie Mae to restore the investor limit to 10 units (up from four); and gained Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s support for fair compensation for your hard work on these transactions.
  • Claimed victory in an eight-year battle to prevent banking conglomerates from entering real estate brokerage and property management businesses.
  • Provided members with millions of dollars worth of free and discounted resources—from consumer brochures to webinars—through our Right Tools, Right Now campaign. Visit for the latest offers.

Meanwhile, we continue to work on righting the wrongs of the Home Valuation Code of Conduct and ensuring that the FHA has the resources it needs to service its increased client base.

My theme for 2009, "United Toward Tomorrow," couldn’t have been more apropos. Wherever I’ve traveled, I’ve experienced REALTORS® working together on the critical challenges facing both residential and commercial practitioners. Special thanks go to my Leadership Team; our Board of Directors; the staff of NAR; every committee and advisory group chair, vice chair, and member; and the leaders of our state and local associations, who sacrificed time and money to serve our industry in one of the most difficult business years in recent memory, and whose commitment and optimism never wavered. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve with you. You are my heroes.

Charles McMillan

Charles McMillan was 2009 president of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®.