CREA turns 75: A trip down memory lane

It was the year 1943. Canada was only 75 years young. Our nation’s flag was the Red Ensign. Newfoundland and Labrador had yet to join Confederation. Queen Elizabeth was still only a princess. Our country was at war.

During this turbulent time, there was concern among leaders of Canada’s real estate industry that the federal government would continue some wartime measures, such as rent control and other rules relating to property, as permanent policy. They decided to form a national organization to advocate on behalf of the industry to influence the federal government’s post-war planning. As a result, the Canadian Association of Real Estate Boards (CAREB; renamed the Canadian Real Estate Association in 1971) was born.

CAREB’s first constitution was drawn up at the Royal York Hotel in Toronto on March 2, 1943, with the participation of the Real Estate Board of Victoria, the Vancouver Real Estate Exchange, Edmonton Real Estate Association, the Winnipeg Real Estate Board, the Montreal Real Estate Board and 11 real estate boards from across Ontario. CAREB’s founder, Charles Edward Purnell, described the event as “truly an inspiring occasion, a dream of many years.”

75 years later, Purnell’s vision lives on. To celebrate, let’s revisit a few (seriously, only a few of the many) CREA milestones from the last seven and a half decades.

English milestones.

Today in 2018, CREA is one of Canada’s largest single-industry trade associations. Our membership has grown to more than 124,000 real estate brokers, agents and salespeople, working through 100 real estate boards and associations across Canada. Our staff of 100+ professionals are committed to working to promote the interests of REALTORS®; provide standards and services that enhance REALTOR® professionalism and success; and advocate policy that promotes a vibrant and sustainable real estate industry, including real estate property rights and ownership. We look forward to continuing to do so for the next 75 years!

What do you think the world of real estate will look like in the year 2093? Share your ideas in the Comments section below!

Sarah Thirnbeck, Associate Director, Strategic Impact, oversees CREA's national REALTORS Care® program, which aims to celebrate the amazing charitable achievements of REALTORS® across Canada and further foster a spirit of giving in our industry. She also oversees CREA's efforts to support local and provincial Young Professionals Networks across the country as well as new initiatives dedicated to promoting diversity, equity and inclusion on CREA's Board of Directors and committees. Sarah recently earned a Graduate Diploma in Social Responsibility and Sustainability from the University of St. Michael’s College in the University of Toronto to complement her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in communications.


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