Use REALTOR’S® Code of Ethics to Build Trust with Buyers and Sellers

Honesty and integrity are the first two characteristics buyers and sellers look for when choosing to work with a real estate agent, according to a recent Real Estate article.[i] This is why promoting the National Association of REALTORS®’ (NAR) Code of Ethics that you follow is a great way to gain new clients—to position yourself as a trusted real estate transaction partner with both buyers and sellers.

The REALTOR® Code of Ethics has continually-evolved to set the highest standards of ethics, honesty and integrity for more than 100 years. NAR members are bound to bring professionalism and fairness to every individual they represent. This is an incredibly powerful value proposition that all buyers and sellers will find appealing.

While the NAR does invest a wealth of resources to communicate the value of working with a REALTOR®, you yourself can also promote these benefits to your clients. Start by reviewing’s recent article entitled “What the REALTOR Code of Ethics Means to You”, which highlights several principles that mean a lot to consumers, such as:

  • REALTORS® protect and promote their clients’ interests while treating all parties honestly.
  • REALTORS® refrain from exaggeration, misrepresentation, or concealment of pertinent facts related to property or transactions.
  • REALTORS® cooperate with other real estate professionals to advance their clients’ best interests.
  • When buying or selling on their own account or for their families or firms, REALTORS® make their true position or interest known.
  • REALTORS® make sure that, whenever possible, contract details are spelled out in writing and that parties receive copies.
  • REALTORS® give equal professional service to all clients and customers irrespective of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, national origin, sexual orientation or gender identity.
  • REALTORS® paint a true picture in their advertising, marketing, and other representations.

How to Promote:

There are several ways you can promote the REALTOR® Code of Ethics to existing and new clients. Create a link guiding viewers to the above bullets and place it on your website, email sign off or any other digital marketing initiative you use to communicate to customers. Create a fact sheet outlining these highlights and include it in all packets you present to potential clients. Offer to speak at local community events and discuss how these codes must be adhered to by all REALTORS®. Remind clients there are ethical guidelines to handle certain situations as they come up during difficult deal negotiations. Obtain testimonials from past clients who will attest how your following these codes helped them close on a home.

There are dozens of additional ways you can share the Code of Ethics with buyers and sellers. As you repeatedly do this, you will brand yourself as an advocate for all buyers and sellers—one who will bring a high-standard of ethics to their benefit. And who will object to this as they decide what real estate professional they will partner with on one of the most important business transactions of their lives?

[i] “What Clients Value in Real Estate Agent Skills and Qualities”, Real Estate, by James Kimmons.


Share examples of how you have promoted the REALTOR® Code of Ethics to build trust with buyers or sellers in the space provided below.

  1. We include the Code of Ethics on the first page of our listing presentation.