What does the Code of Ethics require in my advertisements?

Article 12 of the NAR Code of Ethics requires your firm and status as a real estate professional in all advertisements. According to NAR’s Professionalism in Real Estate Practice publication, “this may be accomplished by including the terms REALTOR®, REALTORS®, or by disclosing their status as a licensed broker, appraiser, property manager, or other real estate professional.” A professional standards hearing panel determines whether a REALTOR® has violated Article 12.

Can I use the term "REALTOR®" in my advertisements?

Only members of the REALTOR® association may use the term REALTOR® and only in connection with their personal name and firm name. Here are rules to keep in mind:

  • Do not use the term REALTOR® as part of your firm name.
  • Do not use descriptive words or phrases to modify the term REALTOR®—for example, No. 1 REALTOR®, REALTOR® Properties, Professional REALTORS® or Commercial REALTORS®.
  • Do not hyphenate, reconstruct, expand, combine, abbreviate, or divide the term REALTOR®.
  • Use capital letters and include the registration symbol “®” for the REALTOR® trademark.
  • Use a comma to separate your firm name from the term REALTOR®—for example, Hey Y’all, REALTORS® needs a comma between Y’all and REALTORS®.

Can I use the term "REALTOR®" as part of my firm’s name?

No. The term REALTOR® can only be used in connection with—not part of—a firm’s name. Filing a firm name such as Chiltepin REALTORS®, Inc., is unacceptable. However, advertising as Chiltepin, Inc., REALTORS® is acceptable because in the advertisement, a comma separates the firm’s name from the term REALTOR®. Advertising as Hey Y’all, REALTORS® is also correct because it has a comma between Y’all and REALTORS®, but you also cannot file Hey Y’all, REALTORS® as a firm name.

Can I use the term "REALTOR®" in connection with my team name?

No. While the term may be used in connection with your personal name and firm name, that doesn't extend to team names. Teams function as groups within a firm—and do not qualify for the use of the term REALTOR®, according to NAR.

Members who are part of a team can still use the term in connection with their personal name or firm name but not as part of it. Use punctuation to separate your name or firm name from the term REALTOR®: John Smith, REALTOR®.

Can I use the term "REALTOR®" as part of my website’s domain name?

Yes, but only in connection with your personal name or firm name. The requirements to use punctuation, capital letters, and the registration symbol are not required for your website address. However, the term REALTOR® cannot be used with descriptive words or phrases. Domain names such as number1realtor.com, firstrealtor.org, or realtorproperties.com are improper uses. Domain names such as johndoerealtor.com or chiltepinrealtors.com are acceptable.