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Real Estate Almanac

Outside Influencers

The following are powerful leaders not in the residential real estate brokerage industry but through position, holdings, investments or the elected office they have immense influence on the industry or matters pertaining to housing, finance and real estate professionals. They are listed in alphabetical order.
Executives Legend
The color legend to the right illustrates the various backgrounds for the top executives in the residential real estate industry.

Influencers Outside of Real Estate

Almodovar became CEO of Fannie Mae in December 2022. In this position, she plays a critical role in the health of the housing market as the government sponsored entity she now runs will play a vital role in the vibrancy of the secondary mortgage market. The status of the mortgage market will have a large influence on interest rates and, thus, activity in the residential real estate brokerage industry. Previously, Almodovar served as president and CEO of Enterprise Community Partners, a national organization focused on increasing access of affordable housing.
President

United States of America
In the first two years as President of the United States of America, Joseph “Joe” Robinette Biden, Jr., and his administration have supported a variety of policies that affect the housing market. Among the housing-related policies President Biden’s administration has focused on include boosting the supply of manufactured housing and facilitating more multi-unit parcels, limit purchases by large investors of single-family homes and to work with local governments to support zoning and other policies that will increase housing supply.
Judge

U.S. District Court
Judge Bough, a federal judge in the Western District of Missouri, plays a critical role in the brokerage industry in 2023. He is presiding over the class-action antitrust lawsuit known as Sitzer/Burnett in which homesellers have sued NAR, HomeServices of America, Keller Williams Realty, Anywhere Real Estate and RE/MAX, alleging that the industry’s brokerage compensation structure is anticompetitive. The case is scheduled to go to trial in February 2023.
Chairman and CEO

Berkshire Hathaway
The revered investor makes the list this year as one of the industry’s most powerful outside influencers given his position of Chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, the parent company of HomeServices of America (HSA), one of the nation’s largest real estate holding companies. Given that the 2023 SP 200 named HSA president and CEO Gino Blefari as the industry’s most powerful leader, Buffett earns the spot on the outsiders list, as Blefari technically reports to him.
DeVito became CEO of Freddie Mac in 2021. In this position, like Priscilla Almodovar, the head of Fannie Mae, he plays a critical role in the maintaining liquidity in the nation’s residential real estate mortgage market. Before coming to lead Freddie Mac, he served as executive vice president of home lending at Wells Fargo and Company.
Secretary

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
DeVito became CEO of Freddie Mac in 2021. In this position, like Priscilla Almodovar, the head of Fannie Mae, he plays a critical role in the maintaining liquidity in the nation’s residential real estate mortgage market. Before coming to lead Freddie Mac, he served as executive vice president of home lending at Wells Fargo and Company.
Attorney General

U.S. Department of Justice
As head of the U.S. Department of Justice, Garland oversees the regulatory scrutiny the residential real estate brokerage compensation structure is currently receiving from the federal government. The DOJ has a pending civil investigative demand out to NAR in which it asks for details about how the association’s policies allegedly impact unfair business practices related to how brokerages and agents get paid. NAR has appealed the CID with a decision from a judge pending.
Chair

U.S. Federal Trade Commission
Like the U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission plays a huge role in the current federal regulatory review of the residential real estate brokerage industry’s compensation structure. And Khan, who became chair of the FTC in 2021, plays a big role here. Before becoming chair, she served as a professor of law at Columbia Law School.
Chair

U.S. Federal Reserve
Powell serves as the chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed), a role he has held since 2018. President Joe Biden nominated him for another four-year term as chair in 2021. In this position, he oversees an organization responsible for maintaining financial stability and conducting monetary policy. By setting the interest rates at which banks lend money to each other, the Fed has a direct impact on mortgage interest rates, especially in the latter part of 2022 and into 2023, and, thus, plays a big role in the real estate sales environment.
Chair

U.S. Department of the Treasury
As Secretary of the U.S. Treasury, Yellen is responsible for maintaining a strong U.S. economy by supporting an environment good for business and workers. This role’s importance has become even more critical as the country confronts inflation and an unpredictable economy in 2023. Yellen served as chair of the Federal Reserve from 2014 to 2018.

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Real Estate Almanac – The residential real estate brokerage industry’s 360-degree compendium and analysis of leaders, organized real estate, technology, franchise brands, enterprises, and brokerages. Researched, analyzed and produced by T3 Sixty. 

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