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The Code of Ethics Doesn’t Require Being Ignorant

Real Estate Agent with KW Utah Realtors

As members of the National Association of Realtors (NAR), we Realtors all adhere to a Code of Ethics, which is the most fundamental difference between being a Realtor and a real estate agent.

This "Code" gives everyone guidelines and rules and conduct. It also prevents Realtors from slamming other companies and/or telling lies to try to get business. It's not a perfect code, but it's important and it makes a difference.

Section 1-3 of the Code says that Realtors won't puff the value just to get the listing, or try to take the listing for less than it's worth to get a quick sale. Do some agents do that anyway- yes. But I'm glad we have a code that many of us care about and abide by.

Article 15 reads:

"REALTORS® shall not knowingly or recklessly make false or misleading statements about competitors, their businesses, or their business practices. (Amended 1/92)"

This means that they will not lie or speak without integrity about any company, including their own. But this does not mean that Realtors can not point out differences in their company and their competitors.

There are some business models I do not agree with. That is my privilege to disagree and it is important that consumers know what the differences are. When I speak to clients I tell them differences in a respectful way and also acknowledge that different people prefer different ways of doing business and there is no ONE right way. That's important. But it is important to educate people about the differences because they should know if I offer them more/different services than someone else.


And I think it is appropriate and healthy for me to discuss my opinions and have conversations about what I believe and how I think we, as an industry, can best serve the client.

Some agents want to hide behind the Code, or their own moral high-browing, and say that noone should say anything but positives about everyone else. That is ridiculous and those people may have something to hide. Others take it too far the other way and lie about the competition and that's even worse.

The Code is a guideline. And a guideline that I would hope most of us should not need because we use common sense. And it is also not a shield against open discussion and education, or being ignorant.


Teri Isner
Keller Williams Realty at the Lakes - Orlando, FL

GREG THANK YOU FOR POSTING THIS!  I have so often seen business models of other companies being ridiculed as much as we may not agree it is not the professional way to do business.

Aug 20, 2006 10:01 AM