How is a REALTOR® different from a real estate agent?
A real estate agent is a REALTOR® when he or she becomes a member of the National Association of REALTORS®, The Voice for Real Estate®, the world's largest professional association. The term "REALTOR®" is a registered collective membership mark that identifies a real estate professional who is a member of the National Association of REALTORS®. Members display the REALTOR® logo on their business card or other marketing and sales literature. REALTORS® are committed to treat all parties to a transaction honestly. They adhere to the National Association of REALTORS® strict Code of Ethics, which is based on professionalism and protection of the public, and are expected to maintain a higher level of knowledge of the process of buying and selling real estate.
REALTORS® work independently, for small agencies, or for large brokerages. They help people buy and sell residential or commercial properties, vacation homes, and land; they conduct appraisals; they operate in the United States and in other countries; some specialize in auctions; and others are buyer's representatives. Many consumers consider selling their home directly but eventually turn to REALTORS®. Smart home sellers realize they need the expertise in pricing their home, making connections with REALTORS® working with buyers, arranging and staffing open houses, and coordinating with other professionals in the sales process.