Real Estate Video Blog: “Why RPAC is Vital to Protecting Homeownership & Stabilizing Our Economy” Featuring Nebraska Board of Realtors President Joe Gehrki
This week, Nebraska Real Estate President Joe Gehrki will be in Washington, DC for the NAR Midyear meetings and to rally for the rights of home ownerships and to speak out against current issues such as the possible termination of the mortgage interest rate tax deduction. We interviewed Joe to understand what RPAC is, who they support, what issues they are currently fighting and how to get involved.
Video Transcript: RPAC stands for the “Realtors’ Political Action Committee,” And what we do is, Realtors contribute to RPAC, to our political action committee, and we interview and contribute to Realtor and Realtor-issue friendly candidates to help get them elected.
We are the trade association that contributes more money to more candidates than any other. We are not Republican, we are not Democrat, we strictly back Realtor-party candidates. In other words, if you’re home ownership friendly, if you are a candidate, and you are business friendly, in other words commercial real estate would benefit from your policies, that’s who we would back.
I learned early on that our industry is dramatically effected by different pieces of legislation at all levels. I learned that we can have an effect, we can shape our industry and by extension make our industry better, not just for our members, but for our clients and customers too, which benefits our economy over all.
Its a lot of fun. Right now, we have several issues that are so vitally important, not just to our members, but to the general public as a whole. The mortgage interest deduction is under fire. If you have a mortgage, the interest that you pay on that mortgage is deductible. The federal government sees that as a pool of money, and the possibility of taking that away would not only damage our industry, it would truly damage our economy. That’s something thats going to keep RPAC in the forefront, thats something that an agent really needs to consider, “What would your business be like if the mortgage interest deduction were to go away?’. You need to consider the fact that, with every real estate sale, when a house closes, 27 to 47 tax paying entities benefit. And what i mean by that is within our industry, there is appraisers, there is the agents, termites, home inspector, ETC.
Then you go outside of the industry. Nobody buys a house and lives in it with the stuff that they have got. They go to Lowe’s, go to the Nebraska Furniture Mart, they buy window coverings, landscaping, you name it. So when you take a number, when you take away a reason for people to own homes, and they don’t go out, renters don’t go out and buy a home, then it affects our industry. And not just our industry but our economy over all. And our economy can not continue to heal without the real estate market healing.
Thank you Joe for taking the time to sit down with us and share your knowledge of RPAC and RPAC related issues.
To learn more or to get involved with RPAC, you can contact Joe Gehrki at Joe.Gehrki@cbshome.com
Or you can contact your local board of Realtors.
Nebraska Real Estate President
West Dodge Managing Broker at CBSHome Real Estate
OABR-Governmental Affairs Committee