Ruminating on RPAC – Home From Midyear Lighter in the Wallet

NAR Immediate Past President Ron Phipps, flanked by Nobu Hata and Michael Oppler, discusses the importance of being an RPAC contributor.

My second NAR Midyear has come and gone, and I’ve returned home a little lighter in the wallet…and proud of it.

I was honored to attend a special YPN RPAC reception on Wednesday evening. The small gathering was by Nobu Hata and Michael Oppler, who welcomed invitees and special guest Ron Phipps, former NAR President, who addressed the room discussing the value of RPAC dollars in supporting our cause.

Having serve for two years as the RPAC Subcommittee Co-Chair at my local board, I was already well-versed in the importance of being a supporter of RPAC. I have contributed every year but always made excuses to myself as to why I couldn’t yet become a major donor. Wednesday evening at the reception, without being pressured or cajoled, I committed to becoming a Sterling R for the first time.

Here’s the thing: I’m not having a spectacular year. That’s not why I made the commitment. In fact, I have just left my team and gone solo, so I am higher in expenses than what is “normal” for me this year. I just made the decision that now is the time — to support what is best for my industry and homeownership. As I watched every person in the room fill out a donation card, I was struck not with a feeling of peer pressure to do the same but with a feeling of pride to belong to this group of invested, involved citizens of real estate.

As former Co-Chair of the Atlanta Board of REALTORS® RPAC Subcommittee, I’ve heard every reason in the book to not contribute:

“It’s not tax-deductible.”

“RPAC doesn’t support my candidates or political party.”

“It’s too much money.”

“I’m having a bad year.”

Not every investment in yourself is tax-deductible: your gym membership isn’t, your spa visits aren’t. But you pay them because you believe in them. If you believe in the best for our industry, then you believe in reaching across party lines and supporting REALTOR® issues and what is best for our chosen livelihood – RPAC does that. At what cost to you? Whatever you can afford. You don’t have to be a Sterling R, but please do commit so that RPAC can continue to fight for homeownership, property rights, and the career path we’ve all chosen, the thing that brought us together this week in Washington, D.C.

I urge you to reach out to your local or state Governmental Affairs Director and to your RPAC chair and have a real, frank conversation about RPAC and what your funds do at the local, state and national levels — I think you may be surprised. The same coffers that supported the first-time homebuyer tax credit are now fighting to keep the mortgage interest deduction and to reauthorize federal flood insurance and make reforms to strengthen the program, not to mention what they’re doing in your state, where 70% of your contribution will stay.

Maura Neill

Beagle lover * bacon enthusiast * music theatre geek * karaoke queen * bourbon sipper * dark chocolate aficionado * grammar nerd * shoe addict * real estate education junkie * RPAC devotee (Platinum R-President's Circle-Hall of Fame) * Atlanta REALTOR®

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  1. Michael Ford

    What a Great Job.