Over 700 participants mostly composed PRC-registered salespersons nationwide will convene in Cebu City for the first ever Real Estate Salespersons Congress on Thursday, Aug. 25, 2022. The congress, initiated by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)- registered Accredited Real Estate Salespersons in the Philippines (ACRES Philippines), will gather industry practitioners in the field of real estate selling to formally introduce ACRES Philippines and its Vision and Mission; recognize its interim officers nationwide; charter members and raise awareness and tackle current concerns in real estate selling. ACRES is the country’s first and largest organization of accredited real estate salespersons. Founded in 2021, it supports the endeavors of salespersons in furthering their learnings, ethical standards, protection of their rights to free and fair practice, upliftment of their well-being, and due representation and inclusion on matters of their trade and prosperity. At present the association has already set up nationwide chapters with interim officers in Metro Manila, Makati, Mandaluyong, Camarines Sur, Cavite, Bicol, Sorsogon, Legaspi, Pampanga, Palawan, Tacloban, Ormoc, Bohol, Dumaguete, Bacolod, Kabankalan, Iloilo, Roxas, Aklan, Calbayog, Samar, Leyte, Cebu, Lapu-Lapu, Northern Cebu, Southern Cebu, Talisay, Mandaue, Catbalogan, Davao, General Santos, Caraga, Cagayan de Oro, Bukidnon, Surigao, Ozamis, Dipolog, Pagadian, Digos, Iligan and Gingoog. These interim officers will take oath during the congress. Cebu was picked as the host for this year’s Congress to showcase the city’s progressive real estate industry whose vibrance could only be kept and achieved by proactive industry practitioners, including real estate salespersons. According to Anthony Gerard Leuterio, president of A Better Real Estate Philippines (ABREP), the advisory group of ACRES, the formation of ACRES came timely as the real estate sector experiences a rebound from the economic stresses brought about by Covid-19 pandemic. He said unifying all the salespersons involved in real estate will further advance the country’s real estate sector and make it one of the strongest economic pillars amid the headwinds. “Since real estate is a selling business, we also need to get the salespersons onboard and actively involved them in advancing the sector alongside the brokers,” he said. Leuterio stressed that since real estate salespersons are significant contributors in the continued expansion of the sector, they must be well represented. “These practitioners need to have a voice too, especially when policies and laws are crafted. We need to include them so we could really a ‘Better Real Estate’,” he said. Real estate salespersons comprise the biggest number of professionals in the real estate service. Moreover, ACRES seeks to work harmoniously and collaboratively with the professionals in the real estate service, regulatory agencies, real estate organizations, property companies, policy makers and advocacy groups. Leuterio said the association is keen to work with the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) so it can participate on campaigns against illegal salespersons and illegal developers. The group also wants to work with the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) to promote accreditation to all salespersons involved in real estate selling activities.