A Brief Explanation of Realtor Designations & Education
A while back a friend of mine asked what all the letters and abbreviations after my name were after I sent him an e-mail. For reference, my e-mail signature looks like this:
Brian Block, Esq., REALTOR / Attorney
ABR, CRS, ePRO, GRI, SRES
Block Real Estate Group, LLC
5100 Leesburg Pike, Suite 200
Alexandria, VA 22302
So here's an explanation of all of these designations:
Esq. -- This is short for Esquire. In the U.S. it generally may be assumed that, when "Esq." appears on business cards or stationery, the man or woman so identified is a member of the bar. I am a licensed Virginia attorney and a member of the Virginia State Bar.
ABR -- short for Accredited Buyer Representative. To achieve this designation, Realtors must complete and pass the exam for a two full day course on all aspects of buyer representation and document a qualifying number of buyer transactions. ABRs maintain membership in the Real Estate Buyer's Agent Council and keep up to date on important developments in buyer agency.
CRS -- short for Certified Residential Specialist. This is like the graduate degree of the real estate industry. Less than 4% of Realtors nationwide have earned the CRS designation through signifcant experience, rigorous educational requirements (over 60 hours of classes), and demonstrated sales volume. The training involves all aspects of real estate with a strong focus on technology and customer service. CRS Realtors can attend the yearly Sell-a-Bration conference to continue their education and learn from other experienced CRS Realtors.
e-PRO -- denotes an Internet Professional Realtor and signifies that the Realtor completed extensive training on using the web and is prepared to employ the latest techniques and services fro the benefit of clients.
GRI -- short for Graduate Realtor Institute. To earn the GRI designation, Realtors must complete over 90 hours of specialized real estate courses. A Realtor who earns the GRI designation has shown his or her commitment to the industry and towards serving the client.
SRES -- short for Seniors Real Estate Specialist. This specialized course of study focuses on real estate issues that are important to senior citizens, including retirement, reverse mortgages, downsizing, health care, and IRAs. After completing this course, an SRES Realtor is uniquely suited for helping senior citizens and their families with their specialized real estate needs.
When choosing a Realtor to help you with your real estate needs, it is important to look at their designations and ask about their continued education and commitment to keeping up to date with the latest news and practices.