Here’s Why Florida Realtors See Sunnier Days Ahead


Sustained gains in employment and in tourism have propelled optimism in the Florida real estate market to a nine-year high, the University of Florida (UF) quarterly survey of emerging market conditions released in June 2015 showed. The poll indicated that the commercial real estate sentiment index measuring the respondents’ outlook on their businesses perked up to 7.45 out of 10, the most upbeat since the 2006 third quarter.

As a whole, the respondents expect continuing improvement in the property markets as Florida’s economy remains vibrant and appears headed toward further growth in the near future. They are also encouraged by the sustained flow of capital to real estate, driven by low interest rates which according to Freddie Mac averaged 3.98% for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage in June 2015, down from the 4.16% average posted a year ago.

TLD enhancement

Here’s Why Florida Realtors See Sunnier Days Ahead

Besides these robust economic tailwinds, strong confidence-boosters for realtors are the recent dramatic improvements in the marketing of Sarasota homes for sale which have opened up greater avenues for even better approaches in client servicing. One of these marketing enhancements is the online top-level domain (TLD) .REALTOR which the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) made available starting May 2015 to local and state Realtor® associations as well as brokerages in the United States and Canada.

This initiative, NAR said, is important in asserting the leadership of the Realtor® community in the industry as it creates an exclusive namespace for itself that consumers could recognize instantly. With a .REALTOR online space, Realtors® ensure that their clients—home sellers, buyers and investors—are getting the most reliable and trustworthy real estate resources and services.

Transparent client servicing

Real estate professionals using this namespace domain let consumers immediately know that they are working within the Realtor® community, the most trusted and reliable source of real estate information, and are dealing with duly licensed agents who subscribe to NAR’s strict Code of Ethics. This is made possible as each .REALTOR domain is linked with NAR’s National Realtors® Database System (NRDS) where all member data information is stored and a unique ID number assigned to each active member.

Besides providing transparency to customers, NAR has likewise immersed itself in the continuing evolution of how the Internet works for business. The association made history by being one of the first to have a TLD approved by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names Numbers (ICANN), the nonprofit that coordinates domains and Internet protocol addresses worldwide. It is under ICANN by which generic TLDs like .biz, .org, and .travel are operated. By having the .REALTOR TLD and continuing to work with ICANN, NAR is thus protecting not only the consumers but also the real estate industry as the Internet continues to evolve.

Certain rules apply in claiming the .REALTOR domain, one of which is that the applicant must be an active NAR member. A $79 annual fee is charged for having a NAR TLD and discounts are available after launch, as well as multi-domain and multi-year discounts. Over 95,000 domains have been claimed since the .REALTOR top-level domain became available to NAR members.