Robocalls have been on the rise in recent years along with complaints about the practice, so take care that your own communications don’t run afoul of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), which regulates certain automated calls and messages—including texts—sent to wireless numbers.
Specifically, the TCPA requires you to get a recipient’s consent before calling or texting a wireless phone using an auto-dialer or leaving a prerecorded message. An auto-dialer includes equipment or an automated service that can dial or text thousands of phone numbers in a short period of time. Although you do not need consent under the TCPA to manually call and speak with a prospect, the National Do Not Call Registry would still apply.
If, for example, you use a software application to send text messages to large groups of people at once, prior consent would be required. For communications that encourage the use of your real estate services, consent would need to be given in writing and clearly state that the recipient authorizes you to send them messages. You’ll often see this consent take the form of a message asking you to text a short code or word to a specific number, such as “Text ‘1234’ to ABC, REALTORS® at 99999 to sign up for client messages.” Additionally, a person must be allowed to withdraw their consent at any time by any reasonable means.
However you gain consent, you should keep those records in case a recipient was to challenge that you properly obtained consent.