You know that old adage, "It's not what you know but who you know that makes the difference." By joining trade organizations, you have an opportunity to get to know more people and network, and you can become an invaluable source of information and support to others.
George Bookis, president of the Bronx-Manhattan North Association of Realtors (BMAR) will tell you that expanding business contacts is the number one reason he suggests that industry members join such an organization. BMAR is a professional trade association that has officially represented the real estate industry since 1924, and is the local chapter for the New York State and National Association of Realtors (NAR).
BMAR is composed of a broad base of professionals including licensed real estate brokers and agents; multi-dwelling property owners; building service vendors and suppliers; property managers; attorneys; appraisers; banks; mortgage companies; fuel service and energy companies; title and abstract companies; insurance companies and insurance brokers; contractors and other companies servicing the real estate industry.
The organization is run by many volunteers, such as the president elect, vice president of the Bronx Residential Division, vice president Manhattan Residential Division, vice president of Owner Management, vice president Commercial Industrial Division, treasurer and secretary. There are several governors that create the entire Board of Governors. The only salaried position is Nunzio Del Greco, the chief executive officer.
"The benefits (of our organization) are being able to expand one's horizons and being able to work in a business environment and to expand your own private business," says Bookis. "From a realtor's perspective, members can meet with loan officers and those loan officers may be able to introduce you to people who are interested in buying or selling property. From a property owner's perspective, a landlord of a multiple dwelling may be able to meet up with insurance brokers or fuel suppliers, and negotiate lower insurance, lower fuel purchases on an annual basis, so on and so forth."