A Call to Action

By
Real Estate Agent with McGraw Realtors

Last night was the Fall Open House at the Alzheimer's facility where my mother lives.  While watching the live jazz band, I looked at the elderly lady sitting in front my and had the strangest thought.  I wondered what she had done in her life to make it possible to be able to afford to live in such a nice place.  The reason I had that thought is because health care for elderly Alzheimer's patients is not inexpensive.  And the facility where my father can afford to place my mother is very nice.  But he won't be able to keep mom there forever because they're going to run out of money before long.

After wondering what the lady had done to earn enough money for that quality of care, I had another thought.  I'm not going to be able to afford such a place if I ever need one because I pay too much in taxes.  I suppose I could save my money better and spend less and all that, but the reality is that self-employed folks like us pay the highest tax rate.  And ever since I entered Real Estate in 2007, it seems like I work more to pay the taxes than I do to enjoy the income!

You know what?  That isn't right.  I don't know how or why we have arrived at the place where those in our country who choose to own their own business have to pay higher taxes than others.  Quite frankly, this ticks me off.

A Call to ActionCurrently there is a grassroots movement in our country called the Tea Party.  Whether you agree with them or not, they are effectively making an impact in politics.  Who would have thought that a small start up band of people who were ticked off could become a force for change?  Nobody, that's who. 

Hmmm.  That got me to thinking.

If the Tea Party can do it, why can't we?  What if those of us in this little group called the National Association of Realtors maybe got together and formed a national movement of our own?  Instead of using our dues to pay for dorky commercials about how now is the time to buy a house, I would like to see our representatives and people in Washington use our hard earned dues to change the law. 

WE PAY TOO MUCH IN TAXES AS SELF EMPLOYED PEOPLE AND REAL ESTATE
PROFESSIONALS AND NOW IS THE TIME FOR CHANGE.

Now, lest you think this is just some hollow call to action, I have an idea that I believe will give us teeth in this matter.  If the National Association of Realtors leaders don't listen to us and do what we want, we vote them out or remove them or replace them...just like the Tea Party is doing with politicians.

I don't know how that would work, but I believe it can be done.  If enough pressure is brought, perhaps our leaders will listen.  If they don't, I say throw them out.  And when we get out voices moving, maybe other self-employed type folks will join us.

Now, maybe this will go nowhere and maybe it's just a kooky idea.  But maybe not.  We are a country where our voices are supposed to matter, so lets make them matter.  Who knows, we might end up having our own big rally on the mall in Washington DC, visiting some congressional offices and...lowering our taxes!


Protest picture courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/salty_soul/4737400406/

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Bob Haywood
Bob Haywood
Owasso, Oklahoma REALTOR®

Tulsa, OK REALTOR®/ McGraw REALTORS®
Bhaywood@mcgrawrealtors.com
(918) 272-7272

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Comments (4)

Tish Lloyd
BlueCoast Realty Corporation - Wilmington, NC
Broker - Wilmington NC and Surrounding Beaches

Bob:  I couldn't agree more!  In fact, I've been saying much the same for many years, just not as eloquently and not as publicly.  I'm in.  It's time for the NAR to make some changes, and I'd like to help them do it!

Sep 24, 2010 02:39 AM
Glenn Roberts
Retired - Seattle, WA

Something like that may work, Bob, but when was the last time you heard someone say they felt sorry for the BMW, bling flashing, stereotypical real estate agent? On the other hand, who is the tea party? I don't immediately associate them with any particular group of people, so perhaps they have appeal. I don't have a solution here, but it's a good question.

Those who don't pay estimated quarterlies aren't all that aware of what they pay, since it's taken out of every check. And they don't pay the "employer" share of the tax like the self employed do, so they don't feel that bite.

Sep 24, 2010 02:43 AM
Marilyn Boudreaux
Marilyn Boudreaux, Century 21 Bono Realty - Lake Charles, LA
Lake Charles LA Century 21 Realtor

I can identify with you Bob!  I troop with a group of women from the Jr. League to nursing home and assisted living facilities to sing.  Its a joy  to visit those facilities but I remember the costs involved.  Most of those folks worked their entire lives and came from the depression era saving every penny.  No one saves like that today or if they do its with stocks and goodness knows the hit they have taken.  My solution is I keep telling my kids I am just coming to live with them LOL

Sep 24, 2010 05:42 AM
Cynthia Larsen
Cotati, CA
Independent Broker In Sonoma County, CA

I'm a huge advocate for Aging In Place, there are so MANY boomers on the horizon of needing full-time care. It's going to be a huge challenge for everyone, self-employed or not. I'm hoping the health care bill ends up being a good thing.

Sep 24, 2010 06:06 AM