Real Estate Agents get a bad rap sometimes. Okay, a lot of the time. We’ve heard the comments and remarks. We’ve read the Danger Report that our own association released to the world about our obstacles and threats. We hear people say they don’t need us anymore and that the industry has a low barrier to entry. As with any industry, there are those who are extremely professional, those who are sliding by, and those who seem to be out to make themselves rich and famous. Before I became a Real Estate Agent, my broker warned me that I’d soon be lumped in with the whole lot, good or bad.
But get into a room full of real estate agents and I bet you will find the most diverse group of people you’ve ever seen in one place. We have old and young, tall and short, thin and not so thin, experienced professionals, newbies, those who are tech-savvy and other who are not so much. Some who prefer face-to-face communication and those who like everything in writing. There are real estate agents who come from all over the world who speak a wide range of languages, and from every race, religion and socio-economic class. Some wear suits and some are less formal. There are agents from every walk of life who focus on every kind of potential buyer, seller, renter, landlord, investor, or developer that exists.
In order to renew our licenses every two years, we are required to take classes on Fair Housing to make sure that we’re able to professionally work with each and every type of potential customer or client we encounter. It may not seem like a huge requirement, but how many professions require their employees to take diversity training every two years?
I recently completed an online Fair Housing Course with the CE Shop that included links to dozens of great resources. One that caught my eye was the one titled, You Don’t Have To Speak Another Language to Be a Global Agent by Katie Stouffs Grimes of the National Association of REALTORS. I also enjoyed the Diversity Tip Sheet on Cross-Cultural Communication put out by the Diversity Council that has great tips for anyone to who is trying to understand non-verbal communication among different cultures.
We are also required to take Ethics Classes on a regular basis. Real estate agents who are members of the National Association of REALTORS are known as REALTORS and have to follow NAR’s Code of Ethics. It’s online and available for anyone to read. If you do, you’ll see that there are duties we must follow to protect the public, clients, customers as well as other REALTORS.
I’m sure the comments and remarks about Real Estate Agents will continue to be heard, because we are all around you. Everywhere there is land there is a real estate agent who could help you buy, sell, rent or develop it. But as real estate agents are constantly taught to approach all potential clients in a way that helps us to understand their wants and needs and make sure they are financially approved to accomplish their goals, It would be great if the public would start to see real estate agents as the unique and diverse individuals that we truly are.
If you are thinking about buying or selling a home in the DMV including Washington DC, Northern Virginia, and Maryland, give me a call at 202-271-5301 to Get Started.