BCREA’s new Director of Professional Services reflects on the state of BC’s real estate sector

After a long and successful career as a real estate professional, Jim McCaughan joined the BCREA team earlier this year. As BCREA’s new Director of Professional Services, Jim brings with him over four decades of experience in the real estate industry as a real estate agent.®, management broker, instructor and in governance roles. Jim obtained his first license in 1977 as a sales associate and became a broker in 1979 and subsequently managed over 120 associates.

In governance, Jim is a past chair of the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board and the Chilliwack Real Estate Board, served six years on the Real Estate Council of BC and eleven years on the Errors & Omissions Insurance Corporation of BC. Not to mention that Jim was the president of the BCREA in 2012-2013.

Jim’s experience, expertise and service-oriented attitude make his opinions highly sought after and respected. With the unprecedented shift in market conditions from the COVID-19 pandemic, we sat down with him to learn more about his role at BCREA and what he thinks BC Realtors should know moving forward. before.

What does your role as Head of Professional Services consist of?

My role is to provide hands-on expertise to all BCREA Member Services to ensure the delivery of valuable and timely services to Member Councils and Estate Agents. Additionally, I work to identify and assess industry issues and strategize and develop responses to critical issues affecting the real estate industry and real estate agents.

The real estate industry is constantly changing; What do you think is the biggest change happening right now?

The real estate industry continually faces challenges internal and external to the industry. I have a sign above my desk that says: “every problem is an opportunity for a solution”; at this point, our industry is resilient and with everything that has happened with the housing market during the pandemic so far, we need to be able to adapt.

One of the biggest issues in the real estate market right now is consumer protection. Homebuyers are frustrated with the difficulty of buying a home and the conditions they have faced over the past two years. As BCREA continues to champion consumer protection and is at the forefront of government policy, real estate agents must continue to act in the best interests of buyers and sellers, helping them navigate ever-changing conditions. evolution.

With municipal elections taking place in the fall, can you explain how local authorities and regulations may affect the real estate sector?

Cities and municipalities have the opportunity to take positive steps to improve our housing supply and therefore influence the whole real estate sector, in particular the market balance. Local authorities have the option of changing their regulations to streamline the process of approval of land developments and building permits. It is clear that the predominant reason for the current housing challenges in British Columbia and Canada stems from a lack of housing supply.

What professional advice would you share with real estate agents?

Real estate agents, regardless of their experience, must stay in touch with the profession to build consumer confidence in the real estate transaction. This can be through a positive social media presence, joining organized real estate, or enrolling in additional professional development courses.

Additionally, we must continually look for opportunities to demonstrate the great value real estate agents bring to their clients and take steps to continue to act as trusted advisors to consumers.

Throughout my career, I have observed that success in the profession comes down to 60% work ethic and 40% personality and skills. Anyone who has a strong desire, a well-defined goal and an invincible determination will be able to achieve any desired goal.

Despite the challenges facing the sector, I believe the future can and will be very bright for real estate agents and consumers and British Columbia real estate agents will continue to be a valuable resource for people getting started. in the home buying experience.

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