Regina Hubbard first got involved with the Memphis Area Association of Realtors because she wanted to learn from the group’s positivity and team-oriented environment.
That was 17 years ago after she left corporate America to pursue a career in residential real estate brokerage. Now, she’s president of the association, directing its membership with the same philosophy that drew her there in the first place.
“The biggest thing for me is to create this valuable team to get as many people as possible involved in leadership,” Hubbard said. “Because when we grow that leadership base, we are so much more successful in everything that we do.”
Now a trainer at ERA Legacy, Hubbard transitioned into the real estate business after her husband’s success with Lester Hubbard Realtors. She quickly learned the ropes of the industry through MAAR’s many committees, where she saw “how the system works.”
She has chaired the Realtors Political Action Committee, meeting fundraising goals during a down period, and also the Governmental Affairs Committee, which she says is still “very near and dear to (her) heart.” Both teams work to inform MAAR’s members about market conditions and best practices.
“I am a great proponent of education,” Hubbard said. “People need to understand why it’s important and what does it do for your business. I don’t think we can do enough because things are constantly changing in our industry.”
Hubbard has three goals for her 12 months in office as MAAR president. The first is to instill quality in every aspect of what the trade organization does.
“I don’t care what type of function it is, we want to make sure that we’re doing it in a very quality way – that we’re giving our best to our members, and also to our consumers,” she said.
Next is to work at exceeding members’ expectations and to show them that they’re valued. Hubbard said MAAR recently conducted focus groups to gather input from the different segments of its membership base to aid in this effort.
Finally, Hubbard wants to create a dynamic team in order to achieve success throughout the year.
“We have a great core of members who are professionals,” Hubbard said. “This is what we do for our living – we’re not just in it for the short-term. We grow our skills, we work in what we do, and we give the absolute best to our public.”
Hubbard has done business all over the city of Memphis during her tenure in real estate. Her preference is first-time homebuyers, although over the past few years her business included short sales, foreclosures, buyers and sellers “because the market was so tight.”
“I think that first-time homebuyers are the foundation of our real estate market,” Hubbard said. “The more people we get into that first home, the better the market becomes. And it’s so important that the initial contact that they have with a real estate professional is positive and very professional.”
Hubbard predicts continued small increments of improvement in the market during 2013. But because the housing industry didn’t get to its current state overnight, the recovery will be modest.
“The consumers are feeling more positive about the economy and about where we are. Even though we almost fell off the fiscal cliff, people still feel more upbeat,” Hubbard said. “The unemployment rate has continued to decline, and as far as the housing industry is concerned, I think we are near or close to bottom. But everything will be at a slower pace.”
Besides MAAR, Hubbard is involved with the Tennessee Women’s Council of Realtors. Last year during her presidency, the chapter was recognized as the National Chapter of the Year for its accomplishments – the first time that a chapter in Tennessee received the honor.
Hubbard also spends time with the National Association of Real Estate Brokers, a minority trade group. And when she’s not wearing her real estate hat, she’s active in her church’s youth group program and the Church Health Center Wellness, a medical fitness facility.
“With the little time I have left over, I try to make it fun and spread it around,” Hubbard said.
Hubbard will be inaugurated as MAAR’s 2013 president Friday, Jan. 18, at the Holiday Inn University of Memphis, 3700 Central Ave., at 6 p.m.