One of my family's favorite places to visit on a trip to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida is the Animation Building in Disney’s Hollywood Studios There is a spot after the animation tour where a couple dozen would-be illustrators can go for a half hour class with a Disney artist. The class gives step-by-step directions on how to draw a beloved Disney Character. It the past we have had the chance to draw Mickey , Goofy, Pluto, Stitch and even Jack Skellington and Scrooge McDuck. Thankfully, talent is not required and the only art on display is the actual instructors. At the end of the session, everyone leaves with a drawing that somewhat resembles the character that is up on the screen.
The best part of the day is when we compare our drawings Here are examples of my family’s drawings from when my sons were in grade school. Though all of our drawings look like Walt’s old pal, Mickey Mouse, none are identical to each other (and definitely NOT as expert as the one draw by the instructor!). Lesson learned? Everyone who can hold a pencil and follow simple instructions can draw Mickey Mouse, but it takes talent and experience to become a great Disney artist!
Now in real estate, there is a similar situation; anyone can take a real estate class but not all REALTORS® are exactly the same.
Though, REALTORS® do take the same required classes and tests to become agents and adhere to a very specific code of ethics, we are people not machines. As people, we are individuals with different life experiences and talents. Not every real estate agent does things exactly the same way. We all come into each experience with our own talents, abilities and backgrounds. Through education, we may become similar but not identical.
So what does working with a REALTOR® really mean to a buyer or seller?
REALTORS® do abide by a Code of Ethics. In my Minnesota real estate practice, I take these rules very seriously. It is considered the standard of practice that I work under as I truly believe it is the right way to do business. Although there are many details to the complete code of ethics, here are a few points I would like to highlight:
REALTORS® pledge to protect and promote the interests of their client.
REALTORS® do not mislead on property value.
REALTORS® must disclose material defects and facts on properties.
REALTORS® must not discriminate.
REALTORS® must disclose dual agency.
REALTORS® are required to be accountable for funds.
REALTORS® must disclose accepted offers.
REALTORS® are required to provide competent service.
REALTORS® are not lawyers and cannot offer legal advice.
REALTORS® preserve the confidential information of their clients.
When selecting a REALTOR® make sure that the person is on the same page with you and can draw up and present the contract in a professional manner. Take the time to research and select a professional REALTOR® that will be your partner and advocate. Work with a person you like and trust to help you understand the process and negotiate the best deal for you!
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