Code of Ethics Updates from the NAR Conference

Code of Ethics Education Requirement:  The bylaw that required REALTOR’s to take two and a half hours of Code of Ethics training every 4 years has been changed to every 2 years.  New Code of Excellence:  A Code of Excellence program is now in development that goes above and beyond the Code of Ethics. The goal is to raise the practice of real estate measurably through increased training in the competencies that consumers value. These competencies include the stewardship of property listing data, privacy and security of consumer information, advocacy of property rights, community involvement, and technology.  This code will be drafted now and brought back to the board for approval.  More information about the REALTOR of the Future,  an interesting policy vision from NAR.  Other changes are:

Professional Standards Changes:

To make the enforcement of professional standards more efficient, the board approved changes to the Code of Ethics and Arbitration Manual:

  • Clarify the role of alternates in professional standards hearing panels
  • Shorten time frames and clarify guidelines for ethics enforcement administration
  • Establish a “fast track” administrative timeline for resolving ethics complaints
  • Eliminate “rehearing” provisions
  • Expand authorized use of “remote” testimony, and provide guidance on ensuring its confidentiality
  • Limit the use of continuances of ethics hearings to certain specified instances
  • Require persons primarily responsible for administration of professional standards processes to complete administrator training every four years
  • Establish the responsibility of associations to offer ombudsman services to members, clients, and consumers, either directly or as part of a cooperative agreement
  • Establish a citation system and schedule of fines for optional adoption by local and state associations

Sandy, 2015 Board President Steve Ray, and 2015 MLS President Mary Jane White recently returned from the NAR Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana which was held November 7-10, 2014. Here is a snapshot of the Code of Ethics Updates covered at the conference.