This year, the Houston Association of REALTORS® (HAR) Governmental Affairs and Advocacy Department embarked on a mission to strengthen the real estate industry’s voice during a time of apathy and discouragement amongst voters. Locally, we faced a lack of housing inventory, the Texas Legislature was in session, and there was a looming government shutdown in the nation’s Capital. During a pivotal year, we navigated the complexities of a dynamic political landscape, fostered strategic alliances, and championed important policies to protect the real estate industry.

Highlighting the year was a series of high-profile meetings and collaborations. These meetings were not just ceremonial, they were instrumental in shaping key policies. Notably, the department helped facilitate conversations with powerful elected officials like Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo. To illustrate, HAR was significantly involved in recent amendments to Chapter 42, which governs housing development in Houston. The amendments included provisions for narrow lot development, second dwelling units, multi-unit residential buildings, and courtyard-style developments. HAR’s efforts were a determining factor in shaping these amendments, ensuring that they were balanced and considerate of the community’s needs and the real estate market’s dynamics.

Overall, our fundamental role is to ensure HAR members are educated and engaged about the role advocacy plays in shaping housing policies and market conditions. The past year stood as a testament to the dedication and impact of the HAR Governmental Affairs and Advocacy Department. Through our strategic advocacy, collaborative efforts, and commitment to education and community service, we not only reinforced our position as a leading voice in the real estate industry but also significantly contributed to the betterment of the communities our members serve.

Looking ahead to 2024, your Houston Association of REALTORS® Governmental Affairs and Advocacy team will build on 2023 achievements by focusing on several key areas:

• Encouraging more active participation from members.
• Strengthening engagement with local communities.
• Expanding educational programs on key governmental issues.

By focusing on these areas, HAR can continue to be a leading voice in the real estate industry and effectively represent its members’ interests. If you have any questions about an issue or would like to get involved, please send an email to