Let this be a warning to Realtors everywhere that everyone is watching, and while we are all busy, not staying on top of of things can create big mix-ups.
Our friends at YoChicago recently posted a story about the Realtor Code of Ethics and how two prominent people on Chicago Association of Realtors’ (CAR) Board of Directors had incorrect designations listed. Mabel Guzman, president of CAR’s Board of Directors, and Matthew Silver, agent with @properties and a director on the board, both had Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR) designations listed, but the Real Estate Buyers Agent Council (“REBAC”) site doesn’t have the two listed.
Chicago Agent called Guzman and Silver for their comments, and it seems in both cases, this was due to human error. Guzman told us when she heard about the story YoChicago posted, it jogged her memory of something that had happened to her in January: she tried to log in to REBAC and couldn’t. She made a mental note to call them about the issue, which would have alerted her to the fact that she needed to renew her ABR designation, but it completely slipped her mind.
“I do believe in designations,” Guzman said. “And after this, I realize it’s a point of order to keep information updated, like when to renew certifications and to get contacts for organizations in order. What if I had an issue with NAR? It’s important that I can straighten things out right away.”
Silver said he had asked an administrator of REBAC if he could keep the ABR accreditation since he had taken the classes and had been accredited previously, but just chose not to renew it as of recent. There ended up being a miscommunication; unless someone renews and pays dues actively for an accreditation, he or she can’t claim that accreditation, even if they were accredited it in the past for years. “The last two or three years I’ve been ABR-designated, but I didn’t want to be active anymore,” he said.
In short, the two CAR board members didn’t mean to set a bad example for ethics – it was simply human error.
“I don’t think you’ll find two more ethical or involved agents than Mabel or me,” Silver added.
The two say they’re ethical, but miscommunications and mistakes can happen to the best of agents — even to two members of the CAR Board of Directors. Therefore, let this be a warning to agents out there: make sure you’ve got everything up to date when it comes to certifications and designations. And remember, it takes five days for payments to process!