All REALTORS® are real estate agents. But did you know that not all licensed or registered real estate brokers and salespeople are REALTORS®?

Although many people use the two terms as if they’re synonymous, REALTOR® and real estate agent are not interchangeable.

The REALTOR® designation helps ensure home buyers and sellers have the best experience possible. REALTOR® is a trademarked designation, earned only after attaining a certain level of professional training. Think of REALTORS® in the same vein as accountants who get to put CA after their names when they become chartered accountants or project managers who have had the designation project management professional (PMP) conferred on them.

What’s the difference between hiring a REALTOR® and a real estate agent?

Regardless of whether you’re buying or selling a property, when you work with a REALTOR® in Calgary and area, you’re working with someone who is a member of the Canadian Real Estate Association, and, subsequently, a member of CREB® and its provincial partner the Alberta Real Estate Association.

Clients benefit from the many tools and responsibilities that REALTORS® gain through membership.

Consumers are protected by CREB®’s quality controls, which require members to meet a high level of professional conduct and to take ongoing professional development courses. REALTORS® also commit to following the REALTOR® Code of ethics. This is a 20-page document with 28 articles and underlying standards of business practices.

It’s also your guarantee of professional conduct and the best in service.

Consumers can also hold a REALTOR® to account if they feel he or she has failed to meet these standards.

Hiring a professional REALTOR® helps make sure you are given or that you disclose, depending on which side of the transaction you’re on, all the information and facts about a property, thereby reducing your risk.

And remember, only a REALTOR® has full access to all the features of the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS) System. As Canada’s most powerful real estate co-operative marketing system, it’s the most widely accepted tool for both buyers and sellers.

The MLS® System makes it easy for a buyer’s representative to compare prices in different neighbourhoods. And since agents base their suggested list prices on a comparative market analysis, which is based on homes that are either still listed on the MLS® System or have recently sold, it means home prices are fairly priced.

For sellers, being listed on the MLS® System means information about your house will be available to all potential buyers and all of the agents within the system, which will increase the chances of finding that perfect buyer.

For REALTORS®, matching up the perfect buyer with the right house is what it’s all about.

Bob Jablonski
CREB® President