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SILVAR 2012 President Suzanne Yost stressed the importance, value and benefits of being a SILVAR member at the association’s Menlo Park/District  meeting this week. She reminded everyone of SILVAR’s mission statement:

“The Silicon Valley Association of REALTORS® is dedicated to being a leader in the real estate industry by promoting the highest ethical standards of real estate practice, representing the interests of property owners, and providing exceptional service to its membership.”

Membership at SILVAR, the California Association of REALTORS® and National Association of REALTORS® allows REALTORS® to have great opportunities at the local, state and national level. The associations’ lobbying efforts allow members to stay on top of what’s happening at the local, state and national level even before others know about it, said Yost.
Yost said SILVAR has been successful largely due to its district council model, which enables each district to retain its individuality, serve members’ needs and their respective communities.

SILVAR is financially secure, with 4,000 primary members. Thanks to sound fiscal management, the Association has not had to increase dues since 2002, and continues to provide important benefits to members. Some of the many benefits include PRDS Forms, education courses, tour sheets, political advocacy, the weekly newsletter and monthly newspaper, lockbox and keys.

Yost encouraged members to take advantage of volunteer opportunities by participating in district events and programs. “One of the values of being a SILVAR member is getting involved,” said Yost. “We get more out of it than we give.”

She also stressed the importance of each member abiding by the Code of Ethics, which is what differentiates REALTORS® from real estate agents. SILVAR takes the grievance process seriously, she said. Complaints are professionally handled by SILVAR’s Grievance and Professional Standards committees.

It’s a good time to be a REALTOR® and a SILVAR member. Yost has good feelings about 2012. “I feel we’re coming out of a tunnel, and things will be better. It truly is a year of possibilities,” said Yost.

 

The National Association of REALTORS® Federal Credit Union was ranked as the number one credit union with the fastest growth in membership from June 2010-June 2011, according to Callahan & Associates’ 2012 Credit Union Directory.

Callahan & Associates indicates credit unions grew membership rosters by 0.59 percent as of June 2011, bringing the total credit union membership base to 92.3 million. That number actually increased since Bank Transfer Day on November 5, 2011, the day designated for people to switch from commercial banks to not-for-profit credit unions in protest of increasing bank fees.

The REALTORS® Federal Credit Union is a unique special member benefit that offers REALTORS® a banking resource designed specifically for REALTORS®. REALTORS® and their families are eligible to become RFCU members, as are NAR staff and the staffs of state and local REALTOR® associations and boards, and their families.

Open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, the Internet-based RFCU is designed to accommodate REALTORS®’ busy schedules. RFCU offers access to thousands of surcharge-free ATMs nationwide, secure online banking and bill pay, safe deposits, affordable loans and trusted advice. Some of the many benefits include money market savings accounts, no-fee eChecking with debit cards, personal loans and credit lines, real estate loans and credit lines, share certificates, 24-hour online account access, and 24-hour Member Care support by phone or online. RFCU offers competitive interest rates on both savings and lending, and funds are federally insured to at least $250,000 and backed by the full faith and credit of the U.S. government.

RFCU is owned by its members and directed by an elected volunteer board. SILVAR member Jeff Barnett, vice president and regional manager of Alain Pinel Realtors, is the current board treasurer. “I would urge every member of SILVAR to look into this special member benefit. The RFCU offers exclusive rates and offers products available only to members,” said Barnett.

For more information regarding services, benefits and membership requirements, visit RFCU’s website at www.REALTORSfcu.org

 

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