All real estate licensees are not the same. Only real estate licensees who are members of the National Association of REALTORS® are properly called REALTORS®. They proudly display the REALTOR® "R" logo on the business card or other marketing and sales literature. REALTORS® are committed to treat all parties to a transaction honestly.
REALTORS® are different from non-member licensees in that they voluntarily subscribe to a strict Code of Ethics which requires REALTORS® to utilize cooperative relationships and make ethical decisions in order to better serve their clients. In addition, REALTORS® agree as a condition of membership to arbitrate contractual disputes and specific non-contractual disputes as provided for in Article 17 of the REALTOR® Code of Ethics. If you believe a REALTOR® has violated one or more Articles of the Code of Ethics, you can file an ethics complaint alleging a violation(s) through the North Central Washington Association of REALTORS® where the REALTOR® holds membership.
Below are links to the REALTOR® Code of Ethics and a link to request an ethics complaint packet to file a complaint against a REALTOR® members of the North Central Washington Association of REALTORS®.
WHY USE A REALTOR®?
Real estate transactions involve one of the biggest financial investments most people experience in their lifetime. Transactions today usually exceed $100,000. If you had a $100,000 income tax problem, would you attempt to deal with it without the help of a Certified Public Accountant? If you had a $100,000 legal question, would you deal with it without the help of an attorney? Considering the financial size of a real estate transaction, do not consider attempting a deal in real estate without the professional assistance of a REALTOR®.
The Following are Additional Reasons to Select a REALTOR® to Assist with Your Real Estate Transaction:
Your REALTOR® Can Help You Determine Your Buying Power
That is, your financial reserves plus your borrowing capacity. If you provide them with some basic information about your available savings, income and current debt, they can refer you to lenders qualified to help. A REALTOR® can also help you understand different financing options and introduce you to the best lender for your needs.
Your REALTOR® Has Many Resources to Assist With Your Home Search
REALTORS® have access to a variety of informational resources and they can provide objective information about each property, too. They can evaluate a property by providing information about issues of importance to many home buyers. Depending on the area and property, this could include information about inspections for termites, dry rot, asbestos, faulty structure, roof condition, septic tank and well tests, just to name a few. A REALTOR® can help find qualified, responsible professionals to do most of many of these inspections and written reports.
Your REALTOR® Can Help You Negotiate
Are you prepared to negotiate price, financing, terms, date of possession, the inclusion or exclusion of repairs, furnishings or equipment and more? A purchase agreement should provide a period of time to complete appropriate inspections and investigations of a property before you are bound to complete the purchase. A REALTOR® can advise about which investigations and inspections are recommended or required. They will also guide you through the closing process to make sure everything flows as smoothly as possible.
Your REALTOR® Will Give You Up-To-Date Information About the Real Estate Market
REALTORS have knowledge of key factors in succesfully selling a property at the best price, quickly and with little hassle. Current prices, financing, terms and conditions of competing properties and more are components they deal with every day which provides the best results for your transaction.
Your REALTOR® Markets Your Property to Other REALTORS and the Public
Quite often, your REALTOR® can recommend repairs or cosmetic work that will significantly enhance the salability and "showability" of your property. They disburse information about your listed property to other REALTORS® through the Multiple Listing Service, and they use cooperative marketing networks such as those provided through open houses, etc. The REALTORS Code of Ethics requires REALTORS to use these cooperative relationships when they will benefit their clients. In many markets across the country, over 50% of real estate sales are actually cooperative sales, one in which a real estate agent other than the listing agent brings the buyer.
Your REALTOR® Knows When, Where and How to Advertise Your Property
There is a misconception that advertising alone sells real estate. The National Asociation of REALTORS® studies show that 82% of real estate sales are the result of REALTOR® contacts through previous clients, referrals, friends, family and personal contacts. When your property is marketed with help of a REALTOR®, you add a buffer between yourself and the strangers coming into your home. A REALTOR® will pre-screen prospective purchasers to qualify them and generally will accompany prospects through your property.
A REALTOR Can Help Objectively Evaluate Every Buyer's Proposal Without Compromising Your Marketing Position
The initial agreement is only the beginning of the process of appraisals, inspections and financing. REALTORS have developed, balanced legal forms that can be used to write legally binding, win-win agreements that more than likely will make it through the whole process.
A REALTOR Can Help You Close the Sale of Your Home
During the time between when the initial sales agreement is made and closing (settlement), issues such as unexpected home repairs required before financing can be made or discovery of a clouded title may arise. The required paperwork alone is overwhelming and a REALTOR is the best person to objectively help resolve these issues and move the transaction to a successful closing or settlement.