Are Real Estate Designations necessary?

Real Estate Agent with Visionary Properties

Are Real Estate Designations necessary?

Will people trust you with their property if you spent the time to get them?  I think not.

The other day I saw a card from a person that had at least 5 Real Estate Designations.  I saw ABR, CBR, CPM, CRS, SRES, EPRO, etc.  What does it all mean?  I couldn't even tell you what they stood for without looking them up online.  I can tell you this.  Many of these designations take 2 to 3 days in a classroom to get.  If a person has the time to attend that many classes plus get the 24 hours of additional training they need in Arizona to renew a license, what time are they spending doing what they need to do to get paid?  They must be a slow Realtor.

My argument is this.  The best time is time in front of customers.  I know we all belong to organizations like ARMLS and NAR, and I know these organizations need to raise money.  Charging for these so called "advanced degrees" is a way to increase revenue, and an odd scenario.  Are you saying I can't handle a senior as well as a person with a SRES designation?  Not true!  I have had dealings with many people of advanced age and I guarantee you they are happy.  What about CBR? REALTORS® with the CBR designation are taught the street skills necessary to both help buyers find their desired property and to help them negotiate for that property in a non-adversarial manner.  You are kidding me.  I need this class to do this?  I thought that was my job?  In any event, taking some classes is not a bad thing.  In many cases getting updated on laws or just spending time with fellow Realtors is how we survive.  Saying that you need a “TLA” (3 letter acronym) after your name is simply only true for those that have them.  It is not a guarantee that your experience will be any better.

Bottom line is this.  Interview your Realtor.  Ask them how they will help you and inspect what they say they know.  If you are comfortable with the person you are speaking with, then your experience will probably be just fine.  Did they call you back promptly?  If the answer is yes, they probably will work well with other Realtors.  Do they keep you informed?  If you have to call your Realtor to ask how it is going, that is not a good sign.  How was their appearance? You can never make a second first impression.  Do they have the tools? Fax capabilities, Docusign etc.  All these help speed along the transaction.  If you are happy with these answers go for it!  Whether your Realtor has 5 designations or zero, they are all licensed and uniquely qualified to help.  If not, fire them!

Comments (5)

Brenda Whitman, Live in Laramie Real Estate
Live in Laramie Real Estate, Laramie, Wyoming - Laramie, WY
Broker/Co-Owner, Laramie, Wyoming

I am tempted from time to time to pursue one or two of these designations just because I am always open to learning new ideas, but I guess, like you, I'm not convinced the designations themselves really mean anything.

Oct 30, 2012 03:48 AM
Eve Alexander
Buyers Broker of Florida - Tampa, FL
Exclusively Representing ONLY Tampa Home Buyers

I have noticed that the agents that criticize realtor designations, have none.

"They must be a slow Realtor" you say...

Actually, the realtors that have designations are seldom "slow" and  typically do more business than the average...they can also afford the cost of classes without using a credit card.

While you are correct that the consumer does not know the the letters mean, they do understand that an agent that is striving to gain more knowledge, is probably already is just like a doctor who takes advances courses.

Try getting a designation...You might be surprised at what you really don't know.

Eve in Orlando


Oct 30, 2012 03:50 AM
Ralph Janisch ABR CRS Broker
Janisch & Co. - Conroe, TX
Selling Northwest Houston to good people like you!
I have many designation. I enjoy having the credentials but I have NEVER had a client do business with me because I have them or for that matter even ask me what they mean.
Oct 30, 2012 04:05 AM
Ken Brandon
Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage (Jacksonville, NC) - Jacksonville, NC
Camp Lejeune, Jacksonville, NC

I have earned a number of designations. If you attend a class to get a designation for the designation's sake, then in my opinion, you are missing out on the true purpose... which is additional education on a more focused level to improve your knowledge base and increase the level of service you can provide to your clients. In my case, this additional training allowed me to capitalize on opportunities which might otherwise have been missed...and I wouldn't have even known I was missing them. It has never been about the letters.

Oct 30, 2012 06:36 AM
Bob Usey
Bob Usey Properties - Gulfport, MS

To those who need them (designations & diplomas) I have several that you can borrow if you need to impress someone in Real Estate. This business is simply about, trust, professionalism, tact, etc. If you have established a good relationship with a buyer or seller, chances are that they will return.

Bob Usey

Oct 30, 2012 06:42 AM