Realtors Associations Consider Merger

Real Estate

BY JACOB OGLES SRQ DAILY FRESHLY SQUEEZED CONTENT EVERY MORNING THURSDAY AUG 28, 2014

Leadership for the Sarasota Association of Realtors and the Manatee Association of Realtors voted Wednesday to merge the organizations. Members for both groups will decide in mid-September if such a move should take place. The membership vote will be held in each associations' offices on Sept. 16 at 1pm. 

"The reality today is that the perceived barrier between Sarasota and Manatee counties has eroded and we are now one regional marketplace," said Sherry Grooms, MAR president. "Merging the two associations allows us to eliminate duplication and operate more efficiently and cost-effectively."

"We are stronger together," said SAR president Peter Crowley. "By combining our more than 5,000 members, we will become a stronger voice for our profession, which allows us to be more effective in advocating for property rights. It also gives us increased representation, and therefore more clout, at the state and national levels of the organization."

Leaders said the merger has been discussed for two months. The move, according to board members for both associations, would both save on resources and boost the market prominence in MLS searched and within such associations as Florida Realtors and the National Association of Realtors.

If approved, the change would take place Jan. 1 and the merged association would be rebranded as the Suncoast Realtor Association. Such a change would also need the blessing of the National Association of Realtors for the new organization to be recognized as a new association.

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