The purchase of a home is the largest investment most Americans will ever make in their lifetime. Today, however, disclosure laws, environmental regulations and a proliferation of financing options also make it the most complex investment most people will ever negotiate. A local REALTOR® will be the most familiar with the housing market and best prepared to answer your questions in a most detailed way.

Soon, you will discover that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has enacted some of the strictest environmental laws in the nation; and myriad legal stipulations regarding zoning, fair housing, property disclosure, consumer protection, and building codes require buyers to be more knowledgeable than ever before. Today’s buyers need the professional assistance and advice that only a REALTOR® can provide.

Significantly, you should be aware that not all real estate brokers and agents are REALTORS®. Only those licensed real estate professionals who have joined the National Association of REALTORS®, and are members of their respective state and local REALTOR® associations, may use the registered trademark term ‘REALTOR®’. REALTORS® must adhere to a strict national code of ethics and currently account for the most active 25 percent of the more than 65,000 brokers and agents licensed to practice real estate in the Commonwealth.

REALTORS® also are committed to higher standards of education and business practice, and many REALTORS® have earned professional designations or have become certified in specialty areas of real estate brokerage. For example, agents who hold the Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) and Certified Buyer Representative (CBR) designations have received intensive training as residential specialists and as buyer agents respectively. For a full list of professional real estate designations and the specialization they demonstrate, see the summary of real estate designations detailed in the REALTOR® search section of this web site.

For 75-years, the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® has dedicated itself to promoting professional standards within the real estate industry. Why not put that experience to work for you to safeguard the biggest investment you may ever make.

Here are some tips on choosing a REALTOR®

Make a thorough search, as you would before hiring a contractor or attorney. Use directories and the Internet, or visit the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® web site at to locate area REALTORS®. Don’t be afraid to ask a prospective agent or broker how long they have been licensed, how long they have been working in the local market, or how many sales they have closed in recent months? Always ask if they are a REALTOR® member. And, as with any important hiring decision, check references, asking friends and family about their experiences with a REALTOR® you are considering.

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