A Message From Your RAHB President

Dear fellow RAHB members,

Last Thursday, July 4, your RAHB Board of Directors had a productive and informative meeting. There were several agenda items and one of the main topics of discussion was data-sharing – with respect to both ORTIS and neighbouring boards/associations, as well as with the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB)


Thank you to those who participated and provided valuable feedback. The winner of the $100 RAHB credit draw is Ann Cosens of Coldwell Banker Community Professionals. Congratulations Ann, and thank you for your input!

In just over a week and a half, 654 RAHB members responded to the survey. The breakdown of participants by area was 401 from Hamilton, 208 from Burlington, 37 from Niagara North and 8 from Haldimand. Through this survey we found:

  • Of the 654 respondents, 568 (86.85%) of respondents feel that their business is impacted by the existence of property listings that do not appear on the RAHB MLS®
  • Of the 654 respondents, 143 (21.87%) are dual TREB or Brampton Real Estate Board (BREB) members
  • The top-ranked choice as to why they are a dual member is to expose listings to TREB or BREB members
  • Of the respondents who are not dual members of TREB or BREB, 331 (64.9%) interboard their listings on TREB
  • The top-ranked reason for not interboarding on TREB is because respondents do not feel it is necessary to expose listings to to TREB members
  • 77.93% of respondents have been asked by clients in the past year if they expose listings to TREB REALTORS®
  • 64.72% of respondents use Opehouses.ca, 77.42% use REALTOR.ca, and 17.73% use TREBHome.com
  • Many respondents are unaware of TREBHome.com
  • Several respondents feel the name OpenHouses.ca is confusing
  • The majority of respondents prefer REALTOR.ca
  • The data ranked as most important to respondents is TREB; followed by the Oakville, Milton and District Real Estate Board; and a tie for third between Niagara Association of REALTORS® and Brantford Regional Real Estate Board

Some interesting feedback themes were:

  • The TREB interboarding process is beneficial, yet cumbersome
  • REALTOR.ca is the primary site that RAHB REALTORS® recommend, and we should be supporting this platform
  • All Ontario association/board data is very important to RAHB REALTORS® to conduct businesses effectively

Some common questions included:

  • Why are RAHB rules not applied to interboarded listings?”
    A – Outside REALTORS® are informed of our rules and are encouraged to follow them; however, we cannot enforce our rules on non-RAHB members.
  • “Why is it not mandatory for outside REALTORS® to post on the RAHB MLS®?”
    A – Unfortunately this is not possible at this time due to competition rules. The only way to enforce this would be if data was accessible province-wide.

Thank you again for your valuable feedback. We continue to work on behalf of RAHB REALTORS® to ensure you have the data you need for your business.


I know many of you are interested in the recruitment process for RAHB’s new CEO. Our CEO Selection Committee has reported that they’re on schedule and that applications are being received.

Next steps include:

  • Continuing updates from our search vendor, Optimum Talent
  • Optimum Talent to present a list of potential candidates for interview to the Selection Committee, and prepare interview questions for the interview process
  • Round 1 interviews with short-listed candidates are expected to take place by the end of July
  • Second round of interviews with finalist candidates are expected to take place by mid-August
  • Final candidate evaluation and assessment expected to be completed by the end of August

I would like to again thank the interim CEOs – Kim and Carolyn – for providing great leadership during this time of transition. On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would also like to thank our very dedicated RAHB staff, who have been working diligently to ensure there is no gap in service to RAHB members.

Over the coming weeks I will keep you informed regarding the progress of both the CEO recruitment process and the ongoing data-sharing options/negotiations.

This is an important and busy time for our organization. Thank you for your ongoing interest in RAHB’s activities and please don’t hesitate to contact me personally if you have questions or comments.

Bob Van de Vrande, B.Comm., M.B.A., B.Ed.
2019 RAHB President
REALTORS® Association of Hamilton-Burlington

Updated/Amended RAHB Rules and Regulations

On May 9, 2019 the Board of Directors approved the following amendment to the RAHB Rules and Regulations Section 3 – 3.01 and 3.02 as follows:

3.01         An MLS® Listing may be suspended from the Association’s MLS® System before its expiration date provided that a copy of the OREA Association’s standard form entitled “Suspension of Listing Agreement” has been submitted to the Association or processed through Broker Load through the Association’s MLS® System within two (2) Association business days immediately following the date the Suspension of Listing Agreement is signed by the Seller who signed the original Listing Agreement or by his/her/their lawfully authorized representative and by the Broker of Record or Manager of the Listing Brokerage. Such Suspension of Listing Agreement shall not constitute a cancellation of the terms and conditions of the original Listing Agreement. The Listing Brokerage shall be responsible for all Suspension of Listing Agreements submitted or processed through Broker Load regardless of who submits or Broker Loads such forms on its behalf, including, but not limited to, by the Broker of Record, the Manager, or other Registrants or persons employed by the Listing Brokerage.

3.02          An MLS® Listing may be cancelled by completing OREA’s filing the Association’s standard form entitled “Cancellation of Listing Agreement” signed by the Seller who signed the original Listing Agreement or the Seller’s lawfully authorized representative and by the Broker of Record or manager of the Listing Brokerage and a copy of such Cancellation of Listing Agreement shall be submitted to the Association or processed through Broker Load through the Association’s MLS® System within two (2) Association business days immediately following the date the Cancellation of Listing Agreement is signed by all such parties. The Listing Brokerage shall be responsible for all Cancellation of Listing Agreements submitted or processed through Broker Load regardless of who submits or broker loads such forms on its behalf, including, but not limited to, by the Broker of Record, the Manager, or other Registrants or persons employed by the Listing Brokerage.

RAHB CEO Selection Committee – Update

RAHB is pleased to announce that the CEO Selection Committee has been established. We received several responses from qualified candidates and appreciate the interest. Based on the qualifications outlined in the request for volunteers, and in accordance with the CEO Succession Policy, the Board of Directors has appointed the following RAHB members to the 2019 CEO Selection Committee:

Bob Van de Vrande, President, Apex Results Realty Inc. (Chair)
Kathy Della-Nebbia, President-Elect, Royal LePage State Realty
Lou Piriano, Director-at-Large, L. Piriano Real Estate Brokerage 

Ann Forbes Arndt, Member-at-Large, Royal LePage Macro Realty
Don Robertson, Member-at-Large, Com/Choice Realty
Conrad Zurini, Member-at-Large, RE/MAX Escarpment Realty Inc.

Also on the Selection Committee may be three external non-voting advisors.

Thank you to all who applied.

A Message From Your RAHB President

At a meeting of the Board of Directors on April 15, 2019, the resignation of Past-President Jack Loft was accepted. We thank Jack for his years of service to RAHB as a President, Director, and as a member and Chair of various committees.

In accordance with RAHB Bylaw 3.03, the Board of Directors has appointed Lou Piriano to fill the existing Director and Immediate Past-President vacancy on the Board until December 31, 2019.

In accordance with RAHB Bylaw 10.01, on March 25, 2019, the Board of Directors appointed Kathy Della-Nebbia to fill the vacant President-Elect position. Below is a complete list of your 2019 RAHB Board of Directors:

President – Bob Van de Vrande of Apex Results Realty Inc
President-Elect – Kathy Della-Nebbia of Royal LePage State Realty
Immediate Past-President – Lou Piriano of L. Piriano Real Estate Brokerage
Donna Bacher of PureRealty
Hank Balfoort of Right At Home Realty
Jacqueline Norton of Realty Network: 100 Inc.
Stephanie Pinet of RE/MAX Escarpment Realty Inc.
Andrew Robertson of Keller Williams Complete Realty
Julie Sergi of Royal LePage Burloak Real Estate Services
Brian Shaw of Royal LePage State Realty
Nicolas von Bredow of Royal LePage Macro Realty

Your Board of Directors certainly understands there may be questions regarding recent changes with respect to the Board and CEO, and some have suggested we hold a meeting of the membership. We respectfully request your understanding of the fact that more detailed information cannot be provided at this time as it concerns a personnel matter, which involves both privacy laws and legal implications. The same constraints would exist at a membership meeting and, apart from the significant cost of holding such a meeting, we would still be unable to present more detailed information regarding the CEO.

Your Board of Directors very much appreciates the calls and messages of support we have received to-date, as well as the trust and confidence many of you have conveyed. We have received similar support from other Boards and Associations. RAHB staff and the Board of Directors are working tirelessly to ensure that day-to-day operations, pending projects, future projects and protection of the Association are being handled in a timely manner.

RAHB has a robust and detailed Succession Plan for hiring a CEO that was put into motion by the Board of Directors and RAHB staff. The Request for Proposal (RFP) for the hiring consultant was approved today, and last week you received an e-mail invitation to participate on the Selection Committee. Please click the below button for this invitation. We will keep you up-to-date as progress continues on the selection process.

RAHB CEO Selection Committee Information

In terms of day-to-day operations, we have every confidence in our excellent staff who will continue to keep the Association running and meeting your needs on a daily basis. We are truly fortunate to have such amazing staff who understand and respect their roles and the requirements of our members.

Please be assured that, as reported at our recent AGM, your Board remains committed to maintaining and further enhancing data-sharing agreements for the benefit of our members. This work is also well underway and we look forward to reporting further news to you soon.

The Board of Directors and staff of RAHB continue to work on behalf of the Association in order to “Empower REALTORS® to Succeed”.

Bob Van de Vrande, B.Comm., M.B.A., B.Ed.
2019 RAHB President
REALTORS® Association of Hamilton-Burlington

REALTORS Care® Spirit Award

Congratulations to Immediate Past President, Jack Loft, who won the 2019 Spirit Award from the Ontario REALTORS Care® Foundation!

The Spirit Award is given to individuals and organizations that have been instrumental in promoting the good works of the Ontario REALTORS® Care Foundation through past successes and continual fundraising support!

Great Year of Lunches with the President – Message of Thanks to Jack Loft

Below is a message written to 2018 RAHB President, Jack Loft, from John Lusink, President at Right at Home Realty.
Thank you very much for inviting me out to lunch and for the update on what RAHB is doing for its members. In my 34+ years in real estate, I can honestly say this is the first time an Association President has done outreach like this.
Well done!
Merry Christmas, John Lusink.”

New Year, New Directors

With the beginning of 2019, we welcome some new faces to our Board of Directors for 2019.

Hank Balfoort

Hank Balfoort


Hank Balfoort is a Broker at Right at Home Realty Inc. He has worked in organized real estate and been a member of RAHB for 15 years. Hank served on the RAHB Arbitration Committee during 2018 and he will bring his critical thinking and open mind to the RAHB Board in 2019.

Jacqueline Norton

Jacqueline Norton


Jacqueline Norton is a Salesperson at Realty Network: 100 Inc. She has worked in organized real estate and been a member of RAHB for 19 years. Jacqueline also worked for the City of Hamilton where she worked closely with the City Councillors, their committees and Council. Jacqueline is excited to help RAHB take on challenges in the year to come.

Andrew Robertson

Andrew Robertson


Andrew Robertson is a Broker of Record at Keller Williams Complete Realty. He has worked in organized real estate and been a member of RAHB for 13 years. Andrew previously served two years on RAHB’s Board of Directors and is excited to return to help RAHB in the coming year.

Julie Sergi

Julie Sergi


Julie Sergi is a Salesperson at Royal LePage Burloak Real Estate Services. She has worked in organized real estate and been a member of RAHB for 13 years. Julie sat on the RAHB Professionalism Task Force and Member Engagement Committee. Julie is very interested in keeping the professionalism of the RAHB Board as a top priority so the general public and RAHB membership continue to appreciate, respect and value the service RAHB REALTORS® offer.

Brian Shaw

Brian Shaw


Brian Shaw is a Salesperson at Royal LePage State Realty. He has worked in organized real estate and been a RAHB member for eight years. Brian has served on RAHB’s Charity Auction Task Force as a co-chair for two years and as a member for five years. Brian hopes to continue to be a part of the positive change within RAHB and the community.

Nicolas von Bredow

Nicolas von Bredow


Nicolas von Bredow is a Broker at Royal LePage Macro Realty. He has worked in organized real estate and been a RAHB member for 13 years. Nic was the 2018 Chair of the Government Relations Committee and has served on other committees in the past. Nic looks forward to helping guide the Association into the future during 2019.

2018 Year End Review

We hope you and yours are enjoying a safe and happy holiday season!
As 2018 draws to a close, it’s a good time to reflect on what your Association has accomplished on your behalf this past year. Your Board of Directors and RAHB staff worked to improve services for you, which will allow you to better serve your clients and customers:
  • OpenHouses.ca now includes all local active listings – not just open houses.


  • We investigated how to increase professionalism among members and have taken steps, through Professional Development offerings and collaboration with the City of Hamilton (re: signage bylaw compliance), to more fully inform members on ethical and professional issues.
  • We continued to improve and expand on how we connect with members:  Lunch with the President, video updates for members immediately following each Board of Directors meeting, Broker of Record meeting updates, weekly NewsReal newsletter, social media campaigns and even more videos.
As 2018 President and CEO, we are pleased to report that:
  • Your monthly service fees in 2019 will be reduced from $39 per month to $38 effective January 1, 2019. This is the second year in a row that we have reduced your fees while maintaining or expanding services to you.
  • This year saw the greatest number of RAHB members on record. We hit a high of 3,167 members at year end, the highest on record for RAHB making us the second largest real estate board/association in Ontario, clearly indicating REALTORS® value what we offer.
Please watch for more information about what your Board of Directors and Association accomplished for you in the 2018 Annual Report, coming your way in the first quarter of 2019.
Best wishes for a healthy and prosperous new year.
Jack Loft                                                       George O’Neill
2018 RAHB President                                   RAHB CEO

Lunch with the President!

RAHB President Jack Loft had an informative lunch today with John Lusink, the President of Right At Home Realty (the largest independent brokerage in Toronto). John is also a former Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) member. He is impressed with our hard working personnel at the Association, and the wide range of services we offer. John stressed the value of teamwork and professionalism. Jack was privileged to meet another of our engaged members!
As Jack’s last Lunch with the President, we thank Jack for his dedication to RAHB, members, professionalism and lunch!

Lunch with the President!

RAHB President Jack Loft had a great lunch on Wednesday, December 12, with Steve DeVisser of City Brokerage.  Jack and Steve enjoyed Italian at Caro’s at Ottawa and Main Streets in Hamilton. Steve lives and works in the core and is passionate about the rental licensing issue currently working its way through Hamilton City Hall. He would like to see a zoning requirement on all RAHB listings. He also likes the idea of compulsory electronic lock boxes and is a big fan of ShowingTime.  Thanks again Steve!

RAHB Annual Election Meeting

In case you weren’t able to attend the RAHB Annual Election Meeting on Wednesday, December 5, here’s a brief recap of what you missed.

New Directors!
Congratulations to RAHB’s newest Directors:

Hank Balfoort
Jacqueline Norton
Andrew Robertson
Julie Sergi
Brian Shaw
Nicolas von Bredow

These six new Directors will join continuing Directors to form the 2019 Board of Directors

Bob Van de Vrande (President)
Jack Loft (Immediate Past President)
Nikola Bucalo
Kathy Della Nebbia
Stephanie Pinet

The new Board was installed by CREA President Barb Sukkau at the Annual Election Meeting

CREA Update
CREA President Barb Sukkau discussed the approval for sold information to be displayed on REALTOR.ca (with agreement from individual boards and associations) and how CREA will keep REALTOR.ca the number one choice for consumers.

PowerPoint Presentation

Professionalism and Ethics
CREA General Counsel Bill Harrington discussed the importance of members individually and collectively adhering to ethical practice in their businesses.

PowerPoint Presentation

Bylaw Amendments
Members approved  three recommended amendments to the RAHB Bylaw:

  • To reduce the number of scrutineers required at an Annual Election Meeting
  • To incorporate a provision to the Professional Standards/Discipline process to allow for automatic fines for infractions of 14 Basic MLS® Rules
  • To allow staff to make small edits such as punctuation, spelling or number sequence to sections of the Bylaw affected by the first two amendments.

Click here to view approved amendments to the Bylaw. Scroll down to Voting Items.

Scholarship Presentations
Scholarships in Memory of Karan Barker were awarded to five sons and daughters of RAHB members.

Read more about the scholarship and recipients.