devil and angel ethicsThe National Association of REALTORS®, in an effort to attempt to improve the overall ethical environment of the industry, has changed the requirement for mandatory ethics training from the former once every four years to the new once every two years, effective 1/1/17. I understand that this may sound unfamiliar to many of you because you had not been paying attention to the previous requirement. When NAR established the requirement that every REALTOR® complete ethics training once every four years, the California Association of REALTORS® went to work for you. They convinced NAR that because every CA REALTOR® had to complete ethics training once every four years for license renewal, we had no reason to set up an independent tracking system.

With the new requirement that you complete ethics training once every two years, the license renewal requirement is not going to be adequate. The training must be entered into your National REALTOR® Data System (NRDS) record each cycle. If it is not entered, you are required to be suspended until the training is completed. The first cycle is 1/1/17 – 12/31/18.

There are ways to make compliance with the new requirement relatively painless. You can go to nar.realtor/code-of-ethics/training and take the free course available there. Once that course is completed it will automatically post to your NRDS record and you will be in full compliance.

You can also go to the C.A.R. site and take the 45 hours of free continuing education. Like the NAR training, once the ethics portion is completed it will automatically post to your NRDS record. That site is car.org/education/licenserenewal.

If you do not use either of those two methods, then it requires more work on both the part of staff and for you. If you take ethics training under any other program, you will need to submit your completion certificate to SAR and member services will need to manually enter the completion information into your NRDS record. Staff really does not want to take on this potentially significant work burden for over 6,000 members, so we encourage you to take advantage of one of the two free online options discussed above.

We also encourage you to take the training now, while you are thinking of it. If you wait until later, we will need to start sending you email reminders of the requirement. Believe me, we do not enjoy having to send them anymore than you look forward to receiving them. So let’s work together and minimize the impact of this new requirement. Keep in mind that the goal is to improve the ethical behavior of all REALTORS®.

– Dave Tanner, Esq., SAR CEO