The Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) has announced a new benefits program for Ontario Realtors, providing all 96,000 Members with affordable and sustainable access to valuable health and wellness coverage beginning January 1, 2024. Nearly 80% of the votes from 34 Member Boards across the province were in favour of this historic program at a Special Meeting of the Assembly held on June 20, 2023.
For the first time, Realtors across Ontario will enjoy coverage for healthcare, prescription drugs paramedical practitioners, medical services and supplies, and a member and family assistance virtual healthcare program by Maple, all as part of the Ontario REALTOR® Wellness Program (ORWP) Standard Plan. The Standard Plan additionally offers access to life insurance, critical illness insurance, out-of-country emergency medical travel insurance, and accidental death and dismemberment insurance.
″No one thinks the unexpected will happen to them until it does,″ said OREA President Tania Artenosi. ″But we are all just one stroke of bad luck away from our lives being turned upside down. Offering a benefits program that can assist Members during trying times has been a long-standing aspiration at OREA, and we are thrilled to have the support of our Member Boards to do something about it.″
This industry-leading program was born out of the great work being done at local Member Boards across the province. To build on those success stories, OREA struck a Task Force to study the viability and scope of this program, with the goal of providing a safety net benefits package designed to support Members through life’s unexpected challenges. The Task Force worked with Realtor leaders from big cities and small towns across Ontario to determine the policies and coverage that will best support Members whoever and wherever they are, through all walks of life – and for an incredibly competitive price.
″For less than two dollars per day, all 96,000 Realtors across this province will have the peace of mind of a safety net,″ said REALTOR® Wellness Task Force Co-Chair Stacey Evoy. ″And with access to up to $100,000 in life insurance and up to $25,000 of critical illness insurance coverage, plus health benefits including 70% re-imbursement of prescription drugs – this plan accounts for a lot of life’s medical necessities and unexpected hardships.″
Once implemented, the ORWP will become a benefit of Membership available to all Ontario Realtors, and annual dues will be increasing to cover the cost of the Standard Plan premium and administration. Unlike the vast majority of private plans, there will be no medical tests or questionnaires required in order to participate in the ORWP.
The ORWP will also provide additional top-up options for Members looking for enhanced coverage at their own expense, such as dental and vision care, when it comes into effect on January 1, 2024. On that same day, Ontario Realtor family members, Board/Association staff, and Brokerage staff will also be able to enroll in the Program, at an additional cost. More information on these additional options will be provided in the coming months.
″Our number one goal at OREA is ensuring we have our Members’ backs and our surveys have shown time and time again that a benefits program is a top desire,″ said Artenosi. ″We’re doing this for the self-employed family, we’re doing this for the cancer survivor, we’re doing this for the Realtor who needs mental health support to make it through the day. A better future for all Ontario Realtors starts today.″
Members and Member Boards will be updated directly as more details about the ORWP become available. At this time, Members can visit orea.com/ORWP for more information and to get your questions about the program answered.
The Ontario Real Estate Association represents Ontario’s 96,000 brokers and real estate salespeople who are members of the 34 real estate boards throughout the province. OREA serves its Realtor members through a wide variety of professional publications, educational programs, advocacy, and other services.
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