Atlanta Creates Only Independent Realty Association in U.S.
September 13, 2016 (PRLEAP.COM) Business NewsSeptember 13, 2016 - Atlanta, GA, The ninth largest metropolitan market in the United States has a little known real estate secret. Atlanta, Georgia is the only place in the United States that allows agents to have local MLS access without membership to any Board or Association. In Atlanta, and only Atlanta, NAR (National Association of Realtors) participation is optional.
Given a choice, over 60% of Atlanta's real estate agent community has already declined NAR participation. No matter what you may think of NAR, their participation numbers will most likely continue to decline. Throughout the years, unpaid NAR membership dues, from those agents opting out, has meant millions of dollars staying in the Atlanta economy and not ending up on, what many would argue are, wasteful DC lobbying efforts. But, does this agent freedom of choice also represent a lost opportunity?
"Atlanta has tens of thousands of agents tied together by common concerns yet unorganized in structure and unheard from in voice. That kind of dynamic, with those numbers, just doesn't pop-up very often", said Jeff Bergstrom, acting Director of TheAtlantaWay.org.
Many would claim, Realty Associations were originally built from the Broker's point of view. What was good for the Broker would be good for all. Times have changed. Today, particularly in Atlanta, the Broker role is evolving more toward a service provider orientation and less as an active participant in an Agent's sales cycle. As a result, the point of view is very different. Atlanta, is a true "agent-first" market for this reason.
The tone in Atlanta, seemingly different from most of the U.S., is a direct result of the optional NAR environment Atlanta is allowed to have. With an open MLS, and low costs of entry, for both Brokers and agents, Atlanta has a very high number of Brokerages and more part-time agents than anywhere else in the U.S. With hundreds of Brokerages to choose from, Atlanta agents have considerably more options than many of their counterparts in other parts of the Country.
There is great power in the collective voice. The charter of the Atlanta Way (www.TheAtlantaWay.org) is to harness the benefit of its member numbers for the group's greater good. Atlanta agents have opted out of NAR participation, in large part, because NARs function or messaging wasn't connecting. Today, agents in Atlanta are trying to re-cast what a Realty Association means and what it could be.
The Atlanta effort is uniquely positioned as the real estate industry undergoes a significant generational shift as thousands of Boomer-era agents retire. "Atlanta is the only market allowed to create a true alternative to NAR. It really is a great opportunity for those interested in developing a career path in real estate", added TAW's Bergstrom.
Visit www.TheAtlantaWay.org to learn more about Atlanta's unique real estate market. To anyone thinking of Atlanta real estate and those wanting to potentially participate, be sure to submit your information to site's Contact page.
TheAtlantaWay.org is a free, non-profit, agent-driven Association for Independent real estate professional. Without political agenda, TheAtlantaWay.org focuses on reflecting the local concerns and issues of today's Independent agent Community.