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Of the more than 120,000 Ontarians who used a REALTOR® to buy or sell a home last year, many did so without fully understanding the expertise and skills REALTORS® provide, says a new Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) survey. Conducted by Leger Marketing, the survey says only 10 per cent of Ontarians who have used a REALTOR® know that REALTORS® are trained in environmental issues, and even fewer (six per cent) are aware that family law is part of a REALTOR®'s education.
Barbara Sukkau, president of OREA, says, “Most clients do not realize that REALTORS® are aware of family law issues when selling a family home during a divorce, or that REALTORS® can advise about home inspections based on our knowledge of building construction in the province.”
Even though people who have used a REALTOR® in the past were not aware of specific areas of a REALTOR®'s education, they do recognize the ethical integrity of the profession as 70 per cent of respondents knew that REALTORS® must abide by a code of ethics. Also, 50 per cent knew that REALTORS® must continue their education when they begin practicing to stay informed of changes in the industry.
I'd hazard to guess that the statistics would be the same had the research been completed for consumers in Alberta. In fact, I chatted with a fellow just today that I don't think knew that calling the listing agent was a notoriously bad idea for a buyer – that is if he wanted to get the best representation, price and conditions possible. While the Real Estate Acts are different in each province, both provinces have real estate as self-regulated industries. Now there are some significant differences in the laws regarding real estate so if you have questions about the differences, I encourage you to speak with a real estate agent in Alberta.
OREA has produced the following video about what a REALTOR® can do for buyer clients:
Source: Used under standard YouTube license terms.
Source Article: REM online, January 16, 2012