April Board of Directors report

Front row, left to right: Jennifer Berthelette, Blair Sonnichsen, Chris Dudeck, Ken Clark, Catherine Schellenberg
Back row, left to right: Kourosh Doustshenas, Tony Rinella, Akash Bedi, Trevor Clay, Josh Nekrep, Dennis Lozinski, Liz Taylor
Welcome to the April edition of the Board of Directors report. There are several files that your committees are currently working on for the benefit of the membership.
Governance Review
The Governance Review Task Force and senior management continue to review the by-laws and constitution of the association. As this intensive process proceeds, bringing greater levels of accountability and transparency to the association for the membership, special communications will be delivered to keep members informed of the changes and amendments. To further the dialogue surrounding this significant undertaking, a Past President’s Council meeting will also be arranged for their input and insight.
Several of the Board of Directors, including C. Dudeck, K. Clark, C. Schellenberg, B. Sonnichsen, A. Bedi, J. Berthelette, K. Doustshenas, J. Nekrep and T. Rinella, along WinnipegREALTORS® CEO M. James, joined over 400 other REALTORS® and association staff at the CREA Leadership Summit and Annual General Meeting in Ottawa last April. This year’s theme focused on the future of real estate and highlighted ways REALTORS® can come together to advocate for both consumers and their profession. Speakers and panels discussed a wide range of topics including the current state of government support for homeownership in Canada.
Member Services
Video is increasingly being incorporated into the communication strategies of the association. Market intelligence releases, promotion of the Real Estate News and event notifications are some of the types of messages being delivered via social media, e-bulletins and on Keystone. As we implement video into greater use, staff will explore additional ways to create more professional and innovative productions. To support this endeavour, professional grade equipment has been purchased, along with additional training for staff in lighting, sound and video editing.
SABRE (Sold for Appraisers and Brokers for Real Esate) is a web-based application that grants access to property specific information in Winnipeg and throughout Manitoba. Property tax and assessment and property sold information are some of the data available. Under a subscription plan, SABRE is used by our Commercial Division members and residential agents to provide a wealth of archived information. As SABRE is considered an invaluable resource to its users, WinnipegREALTORS® has renewed their agreement with JLR and will continue to offer SABRE to its members.
A motion was recently carried that if a listing is subject to an impact fee, the list price on the MLS® system must be shown with the impact fee included. The impact fee should be included in the listing price and/or the selling price for the purpose of calculating statistics. It should be noted that it is the obligation of the Listing Agent to specify in the contract if commissions are paid on the total selling price including or excluding the impact fee. If the commission to the co-operating agent is net impact fee, this must be noted in the commission to the co-operating agent field.
The Investigative Committee has made a recommendation to the MLS® Committee to consider adding “No Offers” and “No Showings” lines that can only be edited by WRA staff.
Membership engagement
Comprehensive member surveys are being explored to gauge an accurate and representative sense of the membership. These surveys will deliver important data on the current state of our membership, providing the opportunity to sound off on their concerns and what they like about the present direction of the association. The results of the survey will be utilized to improve our services and make recommendations for future products.
A survey regarding a proposed Open House magazine-style pull-out booklet was sent to the membership. With questions about the new cost and deadline changes, we were able to ascertain whether or not this new booklet would be adopted. While the proposed magazine itself was positively viewed, the associated costs were seen as a downside to the venture. The Publications department will continue to explore format changes to its products.
Government Relations
WinnipegREALTORS®  is pleased to announce it is joining forces with aVentPro, a highly professional event production company to host a first class mayoral forum on October 4th at the Franco Manitoban Cultural Center. They will arrange and provide the technical requirements for the event including provisions to live stream the event.
There will be a enhanced social media aspect to this year’s forum with the creation of short videos introducing the candidates and their platforms which will be shared through their networks as well as association channels.