2016 CAE Recipient Profile - The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver

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Leadership in real estate: The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver’s story 

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) is the second largest real estate board in Canada. We support and serve the residential and commercial REALTORS® and Brokers in our region. 

We provide a variety of products and services to our members, including the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®), research and statistics, education and training, professional standards and arbitration services, public and media relations, computer support, advocacy and more. 

Ten local real estate brokers founded our association in 1919 to, among other things, create and enforce rules of business conduct, adopt a code of ethics and advance the interests of Greater Vancouver residents by collecting and circulating valuable information about the sale of real estate.

Thanks to this vision, most real estate transactions today occur in front of a well-regulated backdrop that’s funded by the profession and designed to protect the public. This includes REALTOR® Errors and Omissions Insurance, an assurance fund to protect home buyer deposits, and multiple avenues of recourse if someone feels their agent did not act in accordance with their professional and contractual obligations. 

We think higher standards result in greater public service. To maintain REBGV membership, a REALTOR® must complete 18 credits within our Professional Development Program (PDP) every two years. 

Education, ethics and professional standards have always been central to our purpose. Being a REALTOR® means you’re committed to standards beyond what’s set out in provincial legislation.

We provide our members with a mechanism to resolve disputes via an Arbitration Committee and we enforce disciplinary decisions for members who violate our REALTOR® Code and other documents that set out a REALTOR’S® responsibilities.

Through the years, we’ve been a tenacious advocate on behalf of homeowners. We believe in smart, sustainable land use and building practices. Our REALTORS Care® charitable arm has raised funds for numerous groups: Multiple Sclerosis, Canuck Place, BC Children’s Hospital, and Covenant House, to name a few. We also work with the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board to administer the REALTORS Care® Blanket Drive on behalf of REALTORS®. The is the longest running and most successful drive of its kind in the Lower Mainland, it’s helped provide warmth to more than 275,000 people over two decades. 

We have a reputation for pioneering initiatives that benefit real estate practitioners across the country. In the early 1950s, we began using the term Multiple Listing Service®. In the early 1960s, we transferred ownership of that MLS® brand to the Canadian Real Estate Association for use by all Canadian REALTORS®. 

We created one of North America’s first computerized MLS® systems in the 1970s, and shared it freely with Boards across Canada. In 2004, we collaborated with the Fraser Valley and Chilliwack real estate boards to pioneer a regional MLS® system. That project combined several MLS® data bases into one – giving our members seamless access to information they need to serve their clients every day. This shared database remains in place today. 

The MLS® system today is the most powerful and efficient system for transacting real estate in the country. Housing market information originating from the MLS® has long been recognized as the most reliable and comprehensive data available for those looking to buy or sell a home.

In 2012, we launched the national MLS® Home Price Index with the Toronto, Montreal, Calgary and Fraser Valley boards, and the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). This tool enables more accurate comparisons between local and national housing markets. 

We supply real estate statistics each month to the media, public, policy makers, banks, economists and other stakeholders to raise public awareness of trends within the local housing market. 

MLS® data also serves as the foundation of our property taxation system by providing reliable information, backed by professional accountability, to government bodies responsible for assessments in our province. 

The real estate industry is a key economic driver in British Columbia.  In 2015, 42,326 homes changed ownership in the REBGV’s area, generating $2.7 billion in economic spin-off activity and an estimated 19,000 jobs. The total dollar value of residential sales transacted through the MLS® system in Greater Vancouver totalled $39 billion in 2015. 

More than 12,800 REALTORS® contribute to this economic activity. Our membership has grown over 20 per cent in the last five years. 

REALTORS® and the public they serve look to us for more powerful and efficient tools for assessing the housing market. They want better information to help with home buying or selling decisions.  Today, we’re exploring potential data synergies with other organizations as a pathway to innovation. 

We focus on the future. Our staff participate in industry-wide initiatives aimed at improvements for REALTORS® and their clients. We think there's always room for improvement. We aspire to achieve excellence when it comes to the products and services we provide members.   

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver has been on an excellence journey for 20 years beginning with our relationship with Excellence Canada.  We achieved Excellence Canada’s Canada Award for Excellence (Quality) in 2010 and again in 2013. We were thrilled this year to achieve another Canada Award for Excellence this time a gold certification in the Excellence, Innovation, and Wellness program. 

Our relationship with Excellence Canada makes us better. We see our business excellence program as a never-ending strategic approach to, and application of, quality principles and practices in the areas of leadership, planning, customer service, people engagement, supplier focus, process improvement and organizational performance. 

In short, we employ a disciplined approach to everything we do. This allows us to expand upon our organization’s legacy rather than live off it.  We’re proud of our 97-year history, but we’re more excited about what’s next. 

For more information about the REBGV, or its REALTOR® members, visit www.rebgv.org