Apply for a NYSREEF Scholarship today
The New York State Real Estate Education Foundation provides scholarships for national designation courses to active REALTORS® practicing full-time in New York State. Any REALTOR® actively engaged in real estate, who holds primary REALTOR® membership in New York State and who has been licensed in New York State for at least one full year, is eligible to apply. This includes salespersons, associate brokers, brokers, and appraisers. The deadline is December 31 so don’t wait! For more information and to apply, click here.
Reduced inventory, rising interest rates curtail New York housing market in October
Albany, NY – November 21, 2023 – As interest rates inched closer to eight percent, sales of homes across the Empire State dipped once again in October, according to the housing report released today by the New York State Association of REALTORS®.
Interest rates peaked in October at 7.79 percent on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, according to Freddie Mac – finishing the month averaging 7.62 percent. This is up from the 7.20 average last month. A year ago at this time, the average on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 7.08 percent.
Closed sales fell for the 26th consecutive month in year-over-year comparisons, from 11,298 homes in October 2022 to just 9,733 units last month. This represents a 13.9 percent decrease. Pending sales however did inch upwards, increasing 3.5 percent to 9,693 homes – up from the 9,364 homes last October. New listings remained similar from a year ago, dropping 0.1 percent from 12,440 listings to 12,423 this year.
Inventory of homes for sale across New York dropped in October as well, from 37,275 homes available in 2022 to only 29,316 units in October 2023. This marks a 21.4 percent decline in year-over-year comparisons.
The median sales price of homes jumped 4.5 percent in October – from $359,000 in 2022 to $375,000 in 2023.
Additional data is available at http://www.nysar.com/industry-resources/market-data.
Congress extends funding for NFIP to February 2024
The federal government funding bill passed by the Senate Wednesday extends funding of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) through February 2, 2024 without any reforms until early next year. Funding for the NFIP was set to expire on November 17 absent action taken by Congress. Thank you to all New York REALTORS® who participated in the Call for Action calling on Congress to extend this critical funding for the NFIP. Read more here.
Cold Calling Still Prohibited in New York
Real estate licensees may not make any unsolicited phone calls to a member of the public during a State of Emergency. General Business Law §399-z(5)(a) states “It shall be unlawful for any telemarketer doing business in this state to knowingly make an unsolicited telemarketing sales call to any person in a county, city, town or village under a declared state of emergency or disaster emergency as described in sections twenty-four or twenty-eight of the executive law.” All other types of marketing such as mailers, billboards, social media, internet etc., are permitted. You may call a FSBO if you have an identifiable purchaser interested in the property. You are prohibited from calling the FSBO to solicit the listing. You may still perform business to business calls so long as you are calling the number provided as the business number.
NYSAR is monitoring all of the current Executive Orders declaring a State of Emergency.
The following States of Emergency are still in effect: (as of 8-15-23)
EO 28.7: Support Asylum Seekers
Declared: Extended on October 23, 2023 (Original EO 28 declared May 9, 2023)
Expires: December 20, 2023
EO 3.26: Disaster Emergency related to Gun Violence
Declared: Extended on November 9, 2023 (Original EO 211 declared July 6, 2021)
Expires: December 8, 2023
If you have any questions about Cold Calling, please contact the NYSAR Legal Hotline. The Legal Hotline is available Monday-Friday from 9:00am-4:00pm at 518-436-9727.
NAR Announces Leadership Transition
National Association of Realtors®, the country’s largest trade association, today announced that Nykia Wright has been appointed its interim Chief Executive Officer, starting November 20, 2023. Bob Goldberg, who announced his planned retirement in June of this year, will serve as an executive consultant to NAR to help support the transition. As previously announced, NAR is conducting a comprehensive search process to identify a permanent CEO.
Wright brings a breadth of executive leadership and strategic advisory experience to NAR. As CEO of the Chicago Sun-Times, she led the newspaper through a sweeping digital transformation and a merger with WBEZ (Chicago Public Media). Wright began her career in the financial services industry and, prior to leading the Sun-Times, was a strategy and business transformation consultant who advised companies and organizations on a variety of operational, financial, and performance improvement matters. She is also the co-founder of SonicMESSENGER, a software-as-a-service (SaaS) startup helping democratize audience engagement and measurement by leveraging smart audio. She sits on the board of the American Cancer Society and the Better Government Association, among other entities, and is a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council at her alma mater, the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.
“We are delighted to welcome Nykia as interim CEO,” said NAR President Tracy Kasper, a Realtor® from Nampa, Idaho, and broker-owner of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Silverhawk Realty. “Her deep experience driving organizational transformation positions her well to advance our strategy, vision and culture initiatives. I look forward to working with her, in partnership with our Leadership Team and staff, to continue strengthening our organization.”We are immensely grateful for Bob’s leadership and decades-long service to NAR. It has been a privilege to work with him in expanding and strengthening our organization, and we congratulate him on his well-deserved retirement,” Kasper added. “His contributions to our association and our industry have been tremendous.”
“NAR advocates for and empowers people who help families across America realize the dream of homeownership,” Wright said. “I am honored to join the organization at this important moment, when the opportunity to make a difference in the evolving real estate landscape has never been greater. I look forward to getting to work and partnering closely with NAR’s talented staff in the months ahead.”
Goldberg also spoke to the transition. “After announcing my decision to retire earlier this year, and as I reflected on my 30 years at NAR, I determined last month that now is the right time for this extraordinary organization to look to the future. Nykia’s strategic expertise and forward-looking perspective are exactly what NAR needs to continue advancing its mission in an ever-changing world. I am grateful for the privilege of leading NAR and confident that the association will continue delivering incredible value to its members for generations to come.”
The National Association of Realtors® is America’s largest trade association, representing more than 1.5 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries. The term Realtor® is a registered collective membership mark that identifies a real estate professional who is a member of the National Association of Realtors® and subscribes to its strict Code of Ethics.
NAR Lawsuit Update
On Tuesday, October 31, a jury found that the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) and brokerage co-defendants were liable in the case of Burnett v. NAR et al.
Though the lawsuit is far from over, NYSAR believes it is important to stay updated on the latest information from our national association. The most common question the NYSAR Legal Hotline is receiving is, “what immediate impact does this ruling have?” NAR guidance is that there is no immediate change to the current commission structure.
Below is a statement from NAR President Tracy Kasper as well as guidance provided by NAR.
This matter is not close to being final. NAR plans to appeal the liability finding because the association stands by the fact that NAR rules serve the best interests of consumers, support market-driven pricing and advance business competition. NAR remains optimistic that they will ultimately prevail. In the interim, they will ask the court to reduce the damages awarded by the jury.
In court, NAR presented evidence that consumers are better off and business competition is able to thrive because of their rules and how well local MLS broker marketplaces function. In fact, the NAR cooperative compensation rule for local MLS broker marketplaces ensures efficient, transparent and equitable marketplaces where sellers can sell their home for more and have their home seen by more buyers while buyers have more choices of homes and can afford representation. NAR also presented that REALTORS® are everyday working Americans who are experts at helping consumers navigate the complexities of home purchases and advocates for fair housing and wealth building for all.
NAR was formed 100 years ago because there was a need for a higher level of ethical practice. NAR’s mission is to advocate for homeownership and always put client interests first. Tracy would like to recognize NAR’s legal team and outside counsel, who have worked tirelessly on the case. NAR anticipates that it will likely be several years before a conclusion is reached.
Tracy is also grateful to NAR staff and the association’s 1.5 million members, who work to serve their clients every day. “We have an important shared purpose for consumers, and we could not achieve that without all that each of us do,” she said. “We will continue to keep you informed of any notable litigation milestones, and in the meantime, I encourage you to continue to refer to the Competition.Realtor website, which provides a comprehensive overview of and many resources for how REALTORS® and local MLS broker marketplaces benefit consumers. The need for each of us and every member to continue to express our value every day in as many ways as we can remains an imperative.”
NYSAR will provide any further updates to its membership via email and on the association website. Also, stay up-to-date with the latest information in the NAR Member Portal.
BURNETT QUESTIONS ANSWERED
What are next steps legally and the timing?
This matter is not close to being final as NAR will appeal the jury’s verdict and remains confident they will ultimately prevail. In the interim, NAR will ask the court to reduce the damages awarded by the jury. Due to the nature of appeals, this case likely will not be concluded for several years.What will be the basis for NAR’s appeal?
NAR cannot speak to the specifics of that until they file their appeal, but they can say that they have a very strong legal basis for appeal.
Is there anything REALTORS®, brokers, state/local associations or MLSs need to do differently because of this verdict?
For many years, NAR has emphasized two important things. One is the use of buyer representation agreements, which maximize transparency by putting all agreements in writing to ensure clarity and understanding, as all members are obligated to do pursuant to the NAR Code of Ethics. These agreements formalize the professional working relationship with clients and detail what services consumers are entitled to and what the buyer agent expects from their client in return. Second, it’s also an imperative for members to continue to express that commissions are negotiable and set between brokers and their clients; explain how local MLS broker marketplaces promote equity, transparency and market-driven pricing for consumers; and persistently communicate the incredible value agents who are REALTORS® provide.
What does the future of buyer representation look like as a result of the verdict?
This verdict does not require a change in the rules, but if class action attorneys had it their way, buyer representation would be very much at risk because many first-time home buyers, among others, couldn’t afford to pay for representation out of pocket. It’s important that members take every opportunity to express how they are experts who guide consumers through the financial, legal and community complexities of buying or selling a home.
Does NAR have the funds to pay the proposed damages or post a bond to file an appeal?
NAR is going to appeal and has the funds to post bond, which allows them to proceed with their appeals and defer potential payment of damages. While appeals will take years, they are confident they will ultimately prevail and are financially prepared for any final judgment.
How does this verdict affect other ongoing litigation, including the other seller lawsuit?
It doesn’t. Cases are tried separately, and NAR remains confident they will ultimately prevail because they have a strong case that they will present on appeal and because their rules are pro-consumer and pro-business competitive.
Is there any scenario where NAR would consider settling?
NAR always has been open to a resolution that maintains a way for buyers and sellers to continue to benefit from the cooperation of real estate professionals and eliminates our members’ risk of liability for the claims alleged. That being said, NAR remains confident they will prevail on their appeal.
Would NAR ever consider changing the cooperative compensation rule?
This rule always has been in place to protect and serve the best interests of consumers, support market-driven pricing and advance business competition. NAR consistently reviews and considers evolving its rules in a way that responds to changes in the industry and what best serves consumers.
Do you expect the plaintiffs to seek an injunction that would require NAR to stop making the rule mandatory or eliminate the rule altogether?
NAR cannot predict what the plaintiffs will do. They would contest any such effort because this rule always has been in place to protect and serve the best interests of consumers, support market-driven pricing and advance business competition.
What’s the status with the Department of Justice and has anything changed with this verdict?
NAR reached an agreement with the DOJ nearly two years ago. NAR has upheld their end of the agreement, and they expect the DOJ to do the same as affirmed by a federal court’s careful ruling. That is a separate matter from the case of Burnett v. NAR et al.
If you have additional questions regarding the NAR lawsuit, please call the NYSAR Legal Hotline at (518) 436-9727, which is available Monday-Friday from 9:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
REALTOR® Call for Action – Tell Congress to Extend NFIP past Nov. 17 deadline
Following REALTOR® advocacy efforts, Congress passed a last-minute spending agreement on September 30 to avert a government shutdown and extend the authority of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The agreement only funds the government through November 17, where Congress will have to come to another spending agreement. The NFIP has now been extended 25 times since 2017, showing the need for a longer-term solution, which NAR supports. Take Action Now to urge Congress to avoid any lapse in November.
Mortgage rates surge, slowing New York housing market in September
Albany, NY – October 19, 2023 – Mortgage rates reached their highest point in over two decades while inventory continues to dwindle across the Empire State, according to the housing report released today by the New York State Association of REALTORS®.
Inventory of homes for sale dipped 24 percent across the state, from 38,082 homes in September 2022 to just 28,943 units available last month. This marks the 47th consecutive month in year-over-year comparisons of shrinking inventory.
Interest rates finished September at 7.31 percent on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, according to Freddie Mac. This is the highest level since the year 2000. For the month, the average on a 30-year fixed rate mortgage rose from a 7.07 percent average in August to 7.20 percent in September.
Closed sales fell to just 9,564 homes in September 2023. This marks a 22.5 percent decrease from the 12,335 sales in September 2022. Pending sales were also down, falling 8.1 percent from 10,049 homes last year to 9,232 units pending in September 2023. New listings fell as well, from 14,017 listings in September 2022 to 12,592 last month. This represents a 10.2 percent decline in year-over-year comparisons.
The median sales price of homes jumped 6.8 percent in September – from $365,000 in 2022 to $390,000 in 2023.
Additional data is available at http://www.nysar.com/industry-resources/market-data.
Deadling for Leadership Academy 7 applications approaching
Applications for NYSAR’s Leadership Academy 7 are now being accepted! The New York State Association of REALTORS® Leadership Academy identifies, educates, and inspires future leaders in a professional, supportive environment. Below are the 2024 Leadership Academy dates. Times are still to be determined.
Dates: Locations TBD
- Feb 26-28, 2024
- April 7-9, 2024
- June 9-11, 2024
- August 4-6, 2024
- September 27-29, 2024
Application Deadline: October 13, 2023
Interviews: October 24 and 25, 2023
Legislation adds questions to PCDS form
On Friday, September 22, Governor Kathy Hochul signed into law a bill that will help consumers make informed choices when purchasing a home in New York. Chapter 484 of the Laws of 2023, adds seven questions to the Property Condition Disclosure Statement (PCDS) related to the property’s flood status and experience. The legislation removes the option in current law for the buyer of residential real property to receive a $500 credit in lieu of receiving the completed PCDS. The new law will go into effect on March 20, 2024.
The new law, Chapter 484 of the Laws of 2023, does not change the role or responsibility of the real estate licensees regarding the PCDS. NYSAR will provide further guidance for its members prior to the law taking effect.
Surging mortgage rates, low inventory continue to slow New York housing market
Albany, NY – September 21, 2023 – Inventory of homes available across New York State shrunk once again as mortgage rates surged to a two-decade high in August, according to the housing report released today by the New York State Association of REALTORS®.
Inventory of homes for sale across the Empire State fell for the 46th consecutive month in year-over-year comparisons. In August 2023, there were 27,686 homes available in New York, compared to 37,865 units available last August. This represents a 26.9 percent decline.
Interest rates hit their highest point last month in over 20 years, according to Freddie Mac. The monthly average on a 30-year fixed rate mortgage rose from 6.84 percent in July, to 7.07 percent in August. This represents the highest monthly average since December 2001, when the monthly average was also 7.07 percent.
Closed sales across New York fell from 13,922 homes in August 2022 to just 11,310 last month, marking an 18.8 percent decline. New listings were also down, falling 10.3 percent from 14,863 units last August to 13,331 homes in August 2023. Pending sales dropped 11.4 percent in August as well – from 12,218 last year to just 10,826 sales in 2023.
The median sales price of homes inched higher from $392,620 last August to $411,500 in August 2023 representing a 4.8 percent increase in year-over-year comparisons.
Additional data is available at http://www.nysar.com/industry-resources/market-data.
NYSAR Meeting Planner is now NYSAR Connect
NYSAR Connect, formerly NYSAR Meeting Planner, is the central location for meeting dates and times, supporting documents, and Zoom meeting links. NYSAR Connect allows you to plan your schedule, view Zoom links, meeting agendas and more. Desktop users click here!
NYSAR Connect is also available as a NEW app in the Apple Play Store and Google Store to manage the meetings at your fingertips!! Just download it and go!
If you have an iPhone, please search “NYSAR Connect” in the App Store or download the NYSAR Connect app by clicking here.
Android users can search “NYSAR Connect” in the Google Play Store or download the NYSAR Connect app by clicking here.
(Login credentials are the same as your login information for NYSAR.com.)