Realizing the American Dream: That’s Who We Are

Real estate agents sell the value of homeownership, property and business ownership every day, which makes us unique. There aren’t many other industries or professions in America where you can say “I am” responsible for making the American Dream come true.

And while we say it with confidence in 2022, it’s not a new idea or something that’s only for this year. It’s who we are — it’s who we were last year and who we will be in the years to come. So now it’s time to show even more of the impact that real estate agents have on our communities, the state’s economy, and the nation’s well-being.

We will do this through our ongoing American Dream of Homeownership campaign, emphasizing that REALTORS® hold the key to ownership. It is an extension of the National Association of REALTORS® “That’s Who We Are” campaign.

We launched the American Dream of Homeownership campaign earlier this year by educating members at our events, sharing key research with the media, addressing discriminatory ratings and covenants, and collecting customer stories to share on all our communication channels.

But there is still work to be done.

Not only do vestiges of discrimination still exist, but emerging barriers make homeownership even more elusive for all Illinois. In fact, over the past few years, we have had to defend homeowners against a growing number of policy proposals at the state and local level that would have effectively undone the American dream of homeownership for all who have not. yet reached. There was also proposed legislation in the Illinois General Assembly that could have had unintended consequences that would impact all homeowners – whether you live in a small town, a big city, or a new subdivision.

Illinois needs more affordable housing statewide, plain and simple.

Our advocacy for the preservation and construction of new homes is an integral part of our American Dream campaign. So are the strides we are making to diversify our industry by increasing the number of minority college scholarships and providing grants for customized broker training.

We are currently working to find those objective, non-partisan influencers who can help us poll Illinois people about whether the American dream of homeownership is still within reach – and if not, what can be done to help them. to achieve it. We hope to find these influencers willing to speak in a documentary about the legacy of housing discrimination and what can be done to eliminate some of the remaining forms of discrimination, such as restrictive covenants and discriminatory ratings.

The American Dream campaign is about awareness, understanding, education and action. So when you ask why we’re leveraging this campaign to better serve our customers, improve our communities, and help make Illinois more attractive and affordable, we answer: It’s who we are!

Jeff Baker is the CEO of Illinois REALTORS®.

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