|What Makes You a Professional REALTOR®?|
The Oxford English Dictionary tells us that a profession involves the application of specialized knowledge of a subject to a fee-paying clientele. According to Wikipedia, a profession is a specialized occupation characterized by intensive training and subsequent licensure by a regulatory body.
The word is derived from Latin, meaning to swear an oath. That oath is based upon adherence to ethical standards which include client confidentiality, truthfulness and striving to be an expert. There is also a stipulation about upholding the good name of the profession.
Starting to sound familiar? Your REALTOR® Membership defines you as a professional. SAR, with the state and national REALTOR® organization, has been doing so for over 100 years.
Along with this overriding benefit, there are tangible savings, discounts and value that you receive through your Membership in the REALTOR® organization.
One Key Element of a Profession is Education
We have the resources to bring you the entire Graduate, REALTOR® Institute (G.R.I.) Designation each year. The Commercial Division has also received national attention and is bringing Certified Commercial Investment Manager (C.C.I.M.) Designation courses to Sacramento.
Open Forums bring more information your way each month. The Real Estate Finance Forum reports on the full spectrum of lending instruments and rates available. The Public Issues Forum (formerly Legislative) invites elected officials to share their views and issues with you. The Industry Update (formerly Broker/Manager Forum) is led by your President-Elect Barbara Harsch and provides updates to help you make informed business decisions.
The Fall Conference (was Business and Technology Expo) will again generate more knowledge through exhibits and presentations by national speakers to keep you ahead of your clients.
Another is Legal Interpretations and Self-Regulation
You can also get free advice by attending the Membership meeting each year when Gov Hutchinson, who heads the Hotline, speaks at SAR. Breaking legal news is given by Past President Dave Tanner at Industry Updates.
Self-regulation through a code of ethics is a central characteristic of a profession. Did you know that the REALTOR® Code of Ethics, adopted nationally in 1913, formed the basis of real estate departments and standards in each state?
The Code and the administration of Professional Standards at SAR raise the level of conduct in the marketplace and provide Members with cost-saving in house dispute resolution services. You can take advantage of inexpensive and expert Mediation with others and it can even be arranged for your clients. You also have available the arbitration and ethics complaint process and the new Citation program to keep your professional activities running in a fair and efficient manner.
All Professions Have Power
SAR, the California and the National Associations of REALTORS® all have qualified staff who lobby and advocate on behalf of you, the Member. Think of $197 – The True Cost of Doing Business - as an insurance policy to protect your profession from onerous regulations. You also help your clients because the REALTOR® organization is unique in going beyond its Members’ issues to protect private property rights as well.
Each Profession Relies on Specialized Tools and Information
You stay current through the newsletters, magazines, email updates press releases and statistics provided and compiled exclusively for REALTORS®. The free library is available at SAR and each level of the federation has Members-only areas of rich websites keeping you ahead of consumers on real estate-related matters. Visit saccommercial.org, car.org and realtor.org to find all of the information that you need to remain current in the profession.
Professional Groups Have Strength in Numbers
Networking – perhaps the most important activity that a client-based professional can pursue – is available at little or no cost to you at SAR. Through the Open Forums, Main and Regional Membership Meetings, courses and events, you have numerous opportunities each week to meet other professionals from all specialties in the industry.
You also have a trained and dedicated staff of 24 individuals here to serve you, Monday through Saturday, with your professional needs.
Public Service and Altruism
In the April 10, 2009 issue of The Sacramento Business Journal , SAR was ranked 14th among philanthropic corporations in Sacramento and was the only trade association to make the list. This ranking does not take into account the thousands of hours of your volunteer work or the time and money that you give to the CanTree and SAR Scholarship Trust and outside of Sacramento to the C.A.R. Housing Affordability Fund and in aid to stricken communities.
The effort and heart that SAR Members give back to the community underscores your professionalism and truly makes Sacramento a Better Place to Call Home.