NAR launches "Buy Now/Sell Now" Campaign. No Joke

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Northern Virginia Homes - FRANKLY REAL ESTATE Inc
I thought it was bad enough when NAR launched their print ad telling people to "Buy or Sell". Talk about it here: Can you trust your Realtor? New NAR ad reviewed.

Now they just launch a TV campaign to "Buy Now/Sell Now".

Dear Ms. Combs (NAR Pres), can I suggest a new focus for NAR? It will help everyone in the long run and help the deteriorating Realtor image.
Have a campaign around: "Is Buying Right for You, Right Now?"

Here is the email sent to Realtors today:


I am pleased to announce the launch of the 2007 Public Awareness Campaign. This will be an exciting year, highlighted by the integration of the "Buy Now/Sell Now" messaging into the already successful Public Awareness Campaign, and an expansion of the campaign, keeping REALTORS® top-of-mind with consumers through radio and television placements from January through November. I hope you'll be pleased with the results.

I wanted to give all of our members a special preview of the 2007 campaign materials. This e-mail includes links to the recently redesigned Public Awareness Campaign Web site, where you can view and download the new campaign materials, see the 2007 media buy schedule, and learn about the 2006 research results.

This year the campaign aims to drive business directly to REALTORS® with a new call-to-action, "Every market's different, call a REALTOR® today." The campaign speaks directly to today's home buyers and sellers to convince them that REALTORS®' expertise and experience are invaluable in the current real estate environment of increased inventories, stabilizing prices, and historically low interest rates.

The campaign will begin airing nationally January 15 on network television. Radio will follow three weeks later.

To view this year's new materials click here.
To view the 2007 media schedule click here.
To view the 2006 research results click here.

The campaign includes Web banners, presentation materials, and other resources that you can use to enhance your business activities, so please visit the Web site, and share the campaign with your clients and colleagues.
Thank you for your continued support.
Pat Vredevoogd Combs, ABR®, CRS®, GRI, PMN
2007 NAR President

The link goes to a page showing a family and reasons for it being a "Good Time to Buy" and another ad saying "Know How to Sell".

First note that the email says "Buy Now, Sell Now" but the ad does not say it is a good time to sell. Instead they focus on what you need to know to sell. It would have been just absolutely nuts if they really had a TV spot on why you should buy, while another spot says you should sell now.

I think NAR needs to change their mission statement. Instead of selling the "American dream" and convincing people to buy without disclosing all the bankruptcies, potential net worth liquidation, they instead should have a campaign of:

"Is Buying Right for You, Right Now?"

And continue to go over the PROS and CONS of buying. Not just perpetuating the PROS and ignoring the risks, or mumbling them under your breathe. I take a different approach with my clients. I play devil's advocate. I try and talk/scare them OUT of buying or at least fully digest the risks. If they survive that and still want to buy, great, I'll help them.

Will this new ad finally convince those on the fence to buy? Discuss...

- Written by Frank Borges LL0SA- Broker/Owner

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Keywords: Housing bubble? Arlington, Alexandria, mls, homes, Real estate, Virginia, Alexandria, 22201, 22314, Fairfax Va, DC Realty, Realtor

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Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley,, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

Interesting article.

I believe that the NAR should stay out of the institutional advertising business and work hard on the DOJ v. NAR litigation.

I think the NAR should pursue trademark violations.

I think the NAR should monitor the agreement with

I think the NAR should work with local boards to enforce code violations.

I think the NAR should leave advertising to agents and brokers who sell real estate.


Jan 12, 2007 03:47 AM #1
Chris Tesch
RE/MAX Bryan-College Station - College Station, TX
College Station, Texas Real Estate
I agree with Lenn!  Let NAR stay out of advertising!  I truly don't believe those are dollars well spent! 
Jan 12, 2007 04:06 AM #2
Jim Lee
RE/MAX Shoreline - Portsmouth, NH
Portsmouth NH Realtor, Portsmouth, NH

It must be working a little bit. 

Our current NAR President told consumers to call a REALTOR® if you're considering a home purchase and apparently a lot of buyers have been listening.

"The percentage of consumers surveyed who are more likely to hire a Realtor® than a real estate agent who is not a Realtor® has risen from 51 percent in 1999 (the first year of the survey) to 64 percent in 2006."

"2007 marks the most extensive outreach effort since the Public Awareness Campaign began. Ads will be broadcast nationwide from January through November and will air more than 8,750 times on national TV and radio outlets and more than 25,000 times on local radio stations through a national buy. Print, billboard, bus shelter, and poster ads are available to local and state associations to use in their own outreach efforts, and Realtors can download Web banners for their own Web sites. To view the materials and learn more about the national Public Awareness Campaign, visit"

Jan 12, 2007 09:07 AM #3
Deborah Burns ~ Seattle Real Estate Agent
Realty Executives -BRIO - Seattle, WA

You know, I don't think that the general public knows (cares?) if their agent is a member of NAR or not.  I think that most consumers think all agents are members of NAR.

Frank - I like your idea of...."Is Buying Right for You, Right Now?"  That seems much more cunsumer freindly to me, more like consult with a "Realtor" for informed advice to determine if buying right now (or not, or later) is in their best interests.  Much better focus, thanks for the post!

Jan 12, 2007 11:39 AM #4
Rich Schiffer
Swarthmore, PA
Referral Agent, e-PRO

Frank, I think you may have missed the underlying message in the ads.  The ads essentially tells people to that "Every market's different, call a REALTOR® today."

I personally see nothing inaccurate or misleading there.  In fact, I think you would agree.  The only way to determine if buying or selling is right for an individual is to consult with someone who can give them solid, factualy, local market information.

I think that while your intention is noble, it seems that your "Don't Trust NAR" tag is a bit like shooting yourself in the foot.  NAR is telling consumers to turn to local REALTORs like yourself for advice.  You seem to be telling people that that is bad advice.  Seems a bit ironic, doesn't it?

May 11, 2007 07:34 AM #5
FRANK LL0SA Esq.- Northern Virginia Broker .:.
Northern Virginia Homes - FRANKLY REAL ESTATE Inc - Arlington, VA

Hey Rich,

I suppose that you are a fan of the Chief Economist of NAR that has make numerous predictions of the bottom of our market?

Sorry, I don't trust most Realtors that are always trying to say the market is peachy and always heading up.

Did you see the other ad that actually said now is the time to buy and sell? Check out the ad here and tell me where in the body of this ad does it explain why now is a good time to sell? Click here


May 11, 2007 12:30 PM #6
Rich Schiffer
Swarthmore, PA
Referral Agent, e-PRO

I am no fan of an economist that waits for all other reports and analyses to be issued, and restates the opinions of others, and I am not sure why you would infer that I am, from what I said in my comments, or in any of my posts.

To answer your comment directly (which, by the way, you avoided doing by replying to my comment with a question, instead of a direct response) -- I did not see the ad, and the pdf you linked to wouldn't open for me, but I will try to give you an answer:

It is a good time to buy.  I think you cannot refute that.  There are many options for buyers, because of the availability of inventory to select from, and the near historic lows in mortgage rates.  (Combined with the changes in FHA limits, it is a very good time, indeed.)

It is also a good time to sell, for the same reasons.  Sellers need to have buyers.  With the availability of funds, buyers are abundant.  In a market with so many buyers looking for homes, of course it follows that it is a good time to sell.

That said, no one can make a general statement and have it be appropriate to every specific situation.  That is why a REALTOR must evaluate the market for every client's situation.  It is not a good time to buy for every buyer, nor is it a good time to sell for every seller.  A good REALTOR will advise their clients to that effect.  I think you and I agree about that.  I wrote an article recently about the importance of individual specific evaluations for each client:  Absorption Rate: What it is, and Why you Should Know it  Please review it.  I would welcome your comments there.

I dont mean to sound adversarial, here, but it seems to me that you have fallen into the trap of over-generalizing something.  Apparently, there is no love lost between you and NAR.  I have no idea what created that reaction, but I think that you are unfairly applying a general statement to every action that NAR takes, and projecting that same negativity to every member of NAR.  You say you don't want NAR to make generalized statements, but in the same breath, you make generalized statements about NAR.  Don't you see the irony?  

May 11, 2007 12:56 PM #7
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