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What is a REALTOR®?

Buying or selling a home is typically the largest financial transaction in an individual’s life.  It is important to have a real estate professional – a REALTOR® – to help navigate through the process.

Although some homeowners may believe they can save money by selling their home themselves, statistics show otherwise. It is a proven fact that for-sale-by-owner properties typically sell for less than the selling price of REALTOR®-assisted homes.

Enlisting the services of a REALTOR® to market the home, shepherd the sale, deal with title and other potential vendor needs, and handle any renegotiation necessary in selling a property can often save a homeowner thousands of dollars.

However, it is important to understand that not every real estate professional is a REALTOR®. Only agents that are members of their local REALTOR® Association, such as the Northeast Florida Association of REALTORS® (NEFAR), can legally use the term REALTOR® as well as the familiar “R” logo, both of which are trademarked by the National Association of REALTORS®.

REALTORS® adhere to Code of Ethics

While all real estate professionals are licensed by the state as agents or brokers, a REALTOR® is truly a cut above the rest. As a member of a local the association, REALTORS® have taken an oath to adhere to a stringent, enforceable Code of Ethics with specific Standards of Practice that promote the fair, ethical and honest treatment of all parties taking part in the real estate transaction.  Real estate licensees, who are not part of a REALTOR® association, are not bound to the ethical practices and principles set forth in the REALTOR® Code.

Educational opportunities

In addition, REALTORS® often take advantage of the numerous educational opportunities which are offered through local, state, and national REALTOR® associations, thereby providing their customers with the best strategies for selling in any market. These courses, certifications, and designations cover all aspects of the real estate industry and set REALTORS® apart from their counterparts who hold only a state-issued real estate license. Through the advanced educational opportunities offered by REALTOR® associations such as NEFAR, customers are assured they are being guided by a real estate professional with a higher level of skill, knowledge, and attention to detail than is required as they deal with today’s complex property transactions.

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About The Author

Marcia Hodgson

A longtime community news and sports reporter, Marcia Hodgson worked for daily and weekly newspapers in Massachusetts, Alaska, Connecticut, New Hampshire, and Florida, prior to joining NEFAR as Communications Director. She has a BA degree in political science from George Washington University and an MFA in creative writing from the University of Tampa. In her spare time, she enjoys beach combing, reading, traveling, researching her genealogy, and having dinner with friends and family.

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