This just in, from the Oklahoma Association of Realtors:
WASHINGTON, D.C. – An estimated crowd of 13,800 Realtors from around the country rallied in the shadow of the Washington Monument Thursday to show support of protecting the American dream of home ownership.
“There was such energy and momentum in the crowd. We’re committed to helping Oklahomans achieve the dream of homeownership,” Momper said. “Part of that is removing obstacles that may make it more difficult for people to buy or sell real estate.”
Realtors are concerned about two major issues: the loss of flood insurance and the mortgage interest deduction.
Congressional action is needed to reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program to ensure access to affordable flood insurance, the Realtors said. Millions of American taxpayers rely on the program for flood protection. Realtors are urging the Senate to pass a five-year flood insurance reauthorization bill before the current temporary extension of the current flood bill expires on May 31.
The mortgage interest deduction is a remarkably effective tool that facilitates homeownership, the Realtors said. NAR opposes any changes that would limit or undermine current law.
In a public statement to the Obama administration, National Association of Realtors President Moe Veissi said, “The (mortgage interest deduction) must not be targeted for change. Any modifications to the deductibility of mortgage interest will harm housing and homeowners, and until housing markets have stabilized, there cannot be a robust economic recovery. Realtors are actively engaged to ensure that America’s 75 million home owners will continue to receive this important benefit.”
Rally speakers from across the country, including members of Congress, stressed that homeowners improve communities. “No one aspires to be a renter!” said Gerardo Ascencio, National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals.
According to the National Association of REALTORS®, the Rally represented the largest gathering of REALTORS® ever in one place.
Note: I actually did aspire to be a renter; that is, I aspired to move out of my parents’ house and I did, in fact, aspire to be a renter; and I was a renter by choice until after I got married. Just sayin’.