Saturday, August 9, 2008

NJAR Survey Results

Now this is funny. This NJAR survey press release is getting alot of publicity in local papers. The title is NJAR survey reveals REALTORS commitment to professionalism. Would you really expect any less? How about NJAR does some spinning? Reading the article it sure sounds like it. The first part is about the results - local REALTORS sound very impressive. Then at the end the release reveals the methodology - which basically makes the survey meaningless. Let's take a look at the press release article as published in the Brick Times -

The report found that the typical REALTOR ® has been in business for 10 years, compared to the national median of eight years. Nearly half of all REALTORS® in New Jersey have a bachelor's degree or higher (45 percent). It also shows that 30 percent of New Jersey REALTORS® hold a professional designation, and 16 percent received specialized certifications.

REALTORS® earn professional designations through the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR®) and its affiliated institutes, societies and councils in order to enhance their knowledge about a specific real estate sector. To earn a designation, REALTORS® must complete required courses, which are designed to prepare them to better serve clients and consumers in a particular field of the real estate industry.

The survey indicated that real estate is the only occupation of 74 percent of New Jersey REALTORS®. A majority (96 percent) said they are certain they will remain active as real estate professionals during the next two years.

"This survey indicates that New Jersey REALTORS® are committed to their profession," added [2008 NJAR® President Drew] Fishman. "The fact that an overwhelming majority of NJAR®'s members are certain they will remain in real estate as a profession shows their confidence in the housing market."

Additionally, the 2008 New Jersey Member Profile found that REALTORS ® worked a median of 40 hours a week in 2007. The report also revealed that in New Jersey 62 percent of REALTORS ® are female compared to 60 percent nationally, and the median age of REALTOR®s is 51. A majority (81 percent) of REALTORS® specialize in residential brokerage.

The first paragraph make REALTORS sound pretty great. Very different from the profile we see on other housing bubble blogs. However less than half (that actually answered the survey) even have a college diploma. In addition, the special designation also sounds great upon first read - but seeing how the designation is just given to those that complete courses or sit through lectures this probably does not mean much. My guess would be some of these designation are given to people who sit through a few hour lecture at the Tropicana or some other have seen awards given to regional conference.

This survey reflects characteristics of NJAR® members. The term REALTOR® identifies a real estate professional, who is a member of NAR and pledges to uphold a stringent code of ethics.

The survey was conducted by the National Association of REALTORS® on behalf of NJAR®. In February 2008, NAR mailed an 89-page questionnaire survey to a random sample of 72,000 REALTORS ®. An identical questionnaire was also distributed to another group of 89,400 members via a Web-based online survey. A total of 9,997 responses were received. There were 344 unweighted responses from New Jersey, yielding a response rate of 4.3 percent, which form the basis of the report. For more information or to view a summary of the 2008 New Jersey Member Profile, visit pdf.

So NJAR is publishing these statistics from a very low response rate that is not weighted. A survey from a trade group about the trade group should already be taken with a grain of salt. Add to the low levels of response and this is nothing more than a press release.

But lets just turn the headlines around - less than half of the people working to sell the biggest investment most will make in life did not even complete college. That itself is a scary thought and headline. And how many people believe what their realtor tells them about financing and mortgage issues. Very scary indeed.

1 comment:

PattyPalma said...

Is there anything that can be done???...Chase just suspended my HELOC for that very same reason " We have used a proven valuation method to estimate your home's value at $206K. Unfortunately, that valuation no longer supports the full amount of your Line of Credit, so we are suspending future draws against your account as of 8-30-08"... I owe $41K and I just put $4,500 in there. I can't get that money back! ! !I put my income into the HELOC and pay my bills out of the HELOC as I have an open ended HELOC...can they do this...???? They based it all on the value of my home.... 7 months ago when I applied for this my home appraised at $339K.They also said the LTV in NJ is now at 65%.
Thank you
Patty Palma
609 601 5299