January 28, 2017

The Future of NAHB Membership Is Here

Have you ever gone to a gym looking to sign up only to be told you have to pay for your entire year in advance? Chances are that you haven't. Have you ever visited Amazon.com to purchase an item only to be told that it will take 60 days (on average) to process order? If you did, you never went back. I can even go to Groupon and book and all inclusive trip in a matter of 5 minutes or less.

Why have we made joining the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) such a lengthy process? I suspect it's because of the age old adage "because that's how we've always done it." Well, NAHB will be celebrating 75 years of service to members across the country this year but 58 of those years were in another century. "Things" need to be brought to the way the world works today as well as constantly being ready for the day by day changes to our future. 

I can't speak for all the new and potentially exciting ideas and possible direction NAHB will take leading our industry into it's next 75 years but I can tell you about one initiative that has come to fruition, one I am proud to lead as chairman. NAHB, through a working group of outstanding volunteer members and EOs from across the country, has been developing a tool to make it easier for members to join or renew. Thanks to their hard work and dedication NAHB now has a solution that will take our membership process into the 21st century, and we are ready to take it out for a test drive.

Since the Midyear meeting, the working group has held countless meetings to discuss many of the challenges that had to be resolved to design and develop a program before an initial pilot could be launched. We are proud to announce that on January 8th, the first new member application was received and processed at the Builders and Remodelers Association of Northern New Jersey, the pilot local home builders association (HBA). 

This new platform will replace a process that has not seen significant changes in decades.  HBAs can save time and money by processing payments online, allowing members to pay in installments, auto-renewing members and sharing merchant fees. Members will receive nearly live processing of their membership payments and have greater flexibility in how they chose to manage their membership. 
Apply and pay online. Right now only 20% of local associations offer online payment.

Federation-wide access.  

The ability to apply or renew from any level of the federation. Payment plans will be simplified and accessible to all members whose local chooses to participate. Locals can offer their prospective members payment options: one lump sum or pay in four or 12 equal installments. (Reducing a potential financial burden to a young business owner.) Auto-renewing! Members can chose to automatically renew with the credit card on file or by ACH. 

The benefits will be tremendous, both for HBAs and members. Our NAHB Immediate Past Chairman Ed Brady says, “I am so pleased the future of membership is here. This platform has been a long time coming and it represents a huge shift for the organization and our members. But most of all, it should help us grow.”
The pilot of this new program will allow us to fine tune the system before it is made available to all HBAs across the Federation later this year. We are excited about the potential this program has to streamline membership and eliminate a lot of the locals’ administrative work so they have more time to serve the members. 

Please feel free to click on my name below for and email me any questions you may have about this program.

It's Time to Take Advantage

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