The difference between a real estate agent and a REALTOR® – Chaffee County Times

When it comes to homeownership, the biggest investment you’re likely to make in your lifetime, you need someone who’s not only knowledgeable, but who you can trust. When you work with a Realtor® you’re working with an agent that’s a part of the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR). 
While a real estate agent can carry out the same responsibilities as a realtor®, they’re not held to the same code of ethics. Realtor®’s are focused on following the “Golden Rule,” by setting a professional standard of respect. Respect for the public, respect for property and respect for peers. 
Julie Kersting, broker and Realtor® at First Colorado Land Office, shares just some of the benefits that come with working with a Realtor®. 
1. A REALTOR® is committed to ethics, advocacy, technology, data privacy, and customer service. 
2. The National Association of Realtors® advocates every day for federal, state, and local policy initiatives that protect REALTORS® and the public. 
3. The Code ensures that consumers are served by requiring REALTORS® to cooperate with each other in furthering clients’ best interests. 
4. NAR offers a wide range of programs and services that help members increase their skills, proficiency, and knowledge. 
In order to ensure that their commitment to the Preamble and Code of Ethics is fresh in their mind, all Realtor®’s complete a mandatory Ethics class once every three years. 
Being a member of NARs, Realtor®’s gain access to their local Board of Realtors. Kersting utilizes their local board, Realtors of Central Colorado, which provides additional education and access to multiple listing services. Through their local association they can assure cooperation and accurate data. 
Local boards are also heavily engaged in advocacy for property rights in terms of real estate related policy and legislative issues. 
Brokerage companies are typically individually owned with brokers that work as independent contractors. “Real Estate is complex. Often what appears to have been the circumstance or facts, later unfolds to provide a clear understanding and explanation of the situation.” Kersting said. “We are committed to being advocates and protecting the consumer.” 
When working with a Realtor® your mind can be at ease that you’re their main priority. Stated within the Code of Ethics is that agents “shall be honest and truthful in their real estate
communications and shall present a true picture in their advertising, marketing and other representations.” 
The code also states that Realtor®’s must “pledge themselves to protect and promote the interests of their client while treating all parties to the transaction honestly.” 
When you’re looking for your dream home you want a Realtor® by your side. “The Realtor Association works very hard and diligently to raise the bar of education, service and overall professionalism in the real estate industry,” Kersting said. “This is the largest trade association in the US and is dependent upon the active participation of its members.” 
If you’re looking to buy or sell a home, vacant land, business or ranch, and don’t know where to start, call Julie Kersting at (719) 395 – 7840 or visit 
Julie Kersting is part of the Chaffee County Times Preferred Business Sponsor program.
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