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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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National Realtors Association cancels annual conference, shifts to virtual format amid COVID-19

UPDATED: Thu., June 25, 2020

Spokane-area Realtors planning on attending their national association’s annual conference in New Orleans later this year won’t get that opportunity.

The National Association of Realtors is canceling its annual conference and expo, transitioning to a virtual format to ensure the safety of its members during the coronavirus pandemic, the trade association announced Wednesday. 

About 15 to 20 area Realtors attend the national conference every year, said Tom Clark, president of the Spokane Association of Realtors. 

“Unfortunately, we will miss some of the banquets and things like that, but the education opportunities and various meetings with committees and the association can take place virtually,” Clark said.

The Realtors Conference & Expo, the largest annual event for real estate professionals, was scheduled Nov. 13-16 in New Orleans. The conference typically draws more than 400 exhibitors, offers networking events and hosts hundreds of educational sessions. 

“Uncertainty has in many ways defined 2020. While positive indicators begin to show our economy is rebounding and treatment options for COVID-19 are proving more effective, so much remains unknown about this virus and the circumstances we will face as a nation come this fall,” Vince Malta, NAR President, said in a statement. “In order to prioritize the health and safety of our members, staff and sponsors, NAR looks forward to hosting a fully virtual Realtors Conference & Expo this November.” 

The virtual format will include relevant speakers, live-streamed content, networking opportunities and an industry expo, according to the association.

NAR completed the first-ever virtual iteration of its Legislative Meetings on May 12-14, when where 28,000 participating Realtors nearly tripled the annual conference’s average attendance, according to the association.

The National Association of Realtors, the largest trade organization in the U.S., represents more than 1.4 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

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