The single, most outstanding characteristic that sets REALTORS® apart from other real estate practitioners is the willingness to accept and abide by the Code of Ethics of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®.
The NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® adopted the Code of Ethics on July 29, 1913, following the professions of medicine, law, and engineering. The Code has been revised several times through the years to reflect current developments in professional real estate practice.
REALTORS® are real estate professionals who have chosen to join the National Association and abide by its strict Code of Ethics. What does this mean to you? It means that any REALTOR® with whom you work has voluntarily agreed to abide by a Code of Ethics, based on professionalism and protection of the public. REALTORS® are subject to disciplinary action and sanctions if they violate the duties imposed by the Code of Ethics.
The Code of Ethics is a detailed document that spells out the professional responsibilities of every REALTOR®. Do not hesitate to ask a REALTOR® for a copy of the Code, including the Standards of Practice. The Code is your assurance of dealing with a professional who has your best interests in mind.
This area of our website contains valuable Professional Standards resources. Find out how to file an ethics complaint and/or arbitration request or read about choosing mediation as an alternative to arbitration. You will also find information on completing the mandatory Code of Ethics training.
Please note that we also have an Ombudsman program available that could possibly assist you with your ethical concerns. The Ombudsman will attempt to informally resolve your concerns through phone communication. The Ombudsman’s role is primarily one of communication and conciliation, not adjudication. Ombudsmen do not determine whether ethics violations have occurred, rather they anticipate, identify, and resolve misunderstandings and disagreements before matters ripen into disputes and possible charges of unethical conduct.