Letter from AAR President Senia Johnson

Letter from AAR President Senia Johnson

Dear Alabama REALTORS®,

I hope this letter finds you well and enjoying the summer. As the weather warms up, so does our real estate market, making it an exciting time for Alabama REALTORS®. To see what’s been happening this summer at AAR, check out the updates below.

  • Homeownership Month: June is Homeownership month! This is a time to celebrate the value of homeownership and its positive impact on families, communities and the economy. Alabama’s current homeownership rate is approximately 73%, exceeding the national average of 66%. In Alabama, a typical home sale has a total economic impact of $84,300. The real estate industry in Alabama accounted for $48.7 billion (or 16.2%) of the gross state product in 2023. You make a difference in people’s lives and the economy! Thank you!  A video message can be viewed here
  • Alabama Housing Market: According to the April 2024 Alabama Economic and Real Estate Report, Alabama’s housing market has seen positive growth each of the past three months. Total home sales and active listings have increased for the third consecutive month, while foreclosures have decreased by 4.0%. The 5,164 home sales recorded in April represent a 3.8% month-over-month increase, and the median sales price has declined, suggesting improved affordability. To see key takeaways and fast stats from the most recent reports, click here. May’s statistics will be out later this week. 
  • Legislative Session: The 2024 Legislative Session was a win for AAR members and property owners! AAR’s public policy team worked tirelessly to advance REALTOR®-friendly legislation and oppose harmful measures. REALTOR® priority bills include the following: (1) a cap on annual property tax increases, limiting annual property tax assessment increases to  no more than 7% each year for both residential and commercial property owners; (2) a squatter removal law which protects property owners from the unlawful occupation of their property; (3) a workforce housing tax credit to incentivize developers to build affordable housing for low-to-mid income workers through tax credits; (4) A bill to address equity theft during the sale of a property for unpaid taxes; (5) a bill to return state-held tax delinquent properties to productive use, helping to reduce blight in communities. For a full recap on the 2024 Legislative Session, click here. A video overview from AAR’s Public Policy Chair can be viewed here
  • Annual Conference: Registration for AAR’s 2024 Annual Conference on October 15-17 at the Grand Hotel in Point Clear, Alabama is now open. This year's conference features a stellar group of industry leaders and experts. During General Session on October 16th, you'll gain valuable insights on key topics that matter to you and your business. Learn more and register here
  • Alabama REALTORS® Foundation Education Scholarships: The Alabama REALTORS® Foundation recently awarded 22 scholarships to aspiring college students and existing college students. Congratulations to all! First time scholarship recipients can be viewed here. Returning scholarship recipients can be viewed here
  • NAR Settlement: In the wake of the NAR settlement, NAR’s new rules will go into effect on August 17. AAR created an NAR settlement resource page exclusive to Alabama REALTORS® where you can review answers to Alabama specific questions and FAQs. To view AAR’s most updated information on the NAR Settlement, click here or contact the Legal Line at legalhelpdesk@alabamarealtors.com for more information or additional questions.
  • AAR Statewide Legal Forms: AAR’s legal team and brokers from across the state have been hard at work on updating AAR’s statewide legal forms. In the coming weeks, AAR will release midyear updates to the legal forms to comply with the NAR settlement agreement and rule changes. AAR will also provide training on the changes, along with webinars on topics such as the purchase contract, listing agreement, transaction brokerage and others. 
  • AAR Board of Directors: The AAR Board of Directors met in May and conducted business on behalf of the Association. A recap can be found here
  • AAR Membership: AAR's May membership has remained at 18,703 members, reflecting a modest 0.66% increase compared to the same time last year. You can view the May membership report here
  • AAR Leadership and Board of Directors Applications for 2025: The application and qualifying period to serve in leadership is now open. There are several opportunities to serve on the AAR Board of Directors, the Executive Committee, as a Regional Vice President, or on the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) Board of Directors. I encourage you or someone you know who meets the criteria to consider making a commitment to serve the Association and apply. The application deadline is August 1, 2024, at 5:00pm. The AAR election will be held on September 30- October 1, 2024. You can find more information here
  • Summer/Fall Committee Applications: Alabama REALTORS® is seeking members to participate in the Credentials and Elections Committee and the Awards Selection Task Force. The Committee and Task Force Meetings will be held virtually in the summer and fall of 2024.  If you are interested in participating in the Credentials and Elections Committee or the Awards Selection Task Force, please click here
  • Governance and Elections PAG: AAR’s Governance and Elections PAGwill resume its work after a pause for the Association to focus on the NAR class action lawsuits and related legal matters. The PAG is reviewing AAR’s governance, election processes, and related structures to ensure we select the most qualified leaders and maintain an efficient governance structure to serve brokers and members effectively.  More background information can be found here. The PAG’s goal is to complete its work by the end of this year. 
  • AAR Awards: AAR's Awards Applications will be sent out soon for presentation this fall. Please keep an eye out for them.  We are excited to introduce a new award this year! Following a recommendation from the PAG, the Board of Directors has approved the creation of the Alabama REALTORS® Brokerage of the Year Award. This award will recognize outstanding small, medium, and large brokerages annually.  We look forward to honoring brokerages that make significant contributions to the real estate profession, their communities, and AAR's mission.

It is an honor to serve as your president this year, and I look forward to all that we can accomplish in the second half of the year. Please do not hesitate to reach out if we can assist you. Thank you for everything you do for our Association and in your communities. God bless you and your families.

Warm regards, 

Senia Johnson
2024 Alabama REALTORS® President

Aar All Hands Rgb Full Color