The National Association of Realtors announced at its virtual Realtors Conference & Expo that it is prioritizing the following issues in 2021: protecting the independent contractors status of Realtors; ensuring COVID-19 relief protection; and protecting members on anti-money laundering policies.
The association noted in a recent blog post on Realtor Magazine that they plan to approach the issues in the following ways:
Independent contractor status
The Department of Labor proposed a new rule in September that would “revise its interpretation of independent contractor status under the Fair Labor Standards Act.” NAR responded to the proposal in March, voicing the association’s support for allowing broker-owners to determine how to classify agents.
Money laundering education and prevention
NAR supports proposed legislation aimed at ending the practice of using anonymous shell companies to launder money in real estate transactions. “It would include the creation of a secure ownership registry of legal entities,” NAR noted in the blog post.
Real estate fraud prevention
NAR will work to identify threats involving wire and title fraud. “NAR is part of the Real Estate Fraud Prevention Coalition, which offers resources to help consumers learn to protect their data and sensitive information, particularly when buying a home.”
COVID-19 relief efforts
NAR has released guides for Realtors such as “Coronavirus Resources for Property Owners” and “Coronavirus: A Guide for Realtors.” The association also will advocate on issues such as remote online notarizations, opportunity zones and rental assistance, among others.
Implicit bias and fair housing
The association is providing a new training tool with implicit bias training. The Fairhaven online training offers simulations where agents are faced with a variety of scenarios involving discrimination. The Fairhaven tool is expected to be released soon at fairhaven.realtor, according to the blog post.