How much do you know about the REALTOR® trademarks and how to use them correctly?
Here are five key facts.
1. REALTOR® = Member of NAR
A REALTOR® is a member of the National Association of REALTORS®. The term REALTOR® should never be used as a substitute for "real estate agent."
The REALTOR® trademarks include:
- the REALTOR® block "R" logo
The REALTOR® marks let people know that you are more than just a real estate practitioner: you adhere to a strict Code of Ethics that protects clients, the public, and other real estate agents.
The term REALTOR® is not only a trademark owned by NAR and protected by federal law, it's a valuable membership benefit that distinguishes members from other real estate licensees.
2. Members can use the REALTOR® trademarks, with limitations
Members may use the REALTOR® marks only in the context of identifying themselves as members of NAR. To maintain the value of the marks, it's important that they be recognized by the public as identifiers of NAR members, and never used generically to denote a vocation or a business.
Members are licensed to use the marks only in connection with their real estate business and in connection with the place of business with which their membership is associated.
3. Non-members may not use the REALTOR® marks
Non-members are never allowed to use the REALTOR® trademarks in reference to or in connection with their businesses or themselves.
Certain nominal uses of the marks are permissible. For example, newspapers, magazines, or radio or television programs may use the marks to accurately identify an individual as a member of NAR or in reference to a Member Board.
4. Design standards for REALTOR® marks must be followed
The preferred form of the term is REALTOR®—in all caps, and using the registered trademark symbol. If using the symbol isn't possible, then the next best form is in all caps: REALTOR.
The REALTOR® block 'R' logo consists of a letter R set in Futura Typeface on a sharply contrasting rectangular background to form a block “R” with the term REALTOR® centered underneath. The rectangular block and the term REALTOR® centered under that block must be the same contrasting color. View additional design standards here.
5. The REALTOR® marks can be used on the internet and in marketing
In usernames, members are allowed to use the REALTOR® marks only to indicate membership in NAR by using the marks with a member’s name or with the legal name of a member broker’s real estate business.
In usernames, email addresses, and domain names, the REALTOR® marks do not need to be separated from a member’s name or real estate business name with punctuation, as they do elsewhere.
The marks may be used on merchandise such as T-shirts and ball caps, as long as the item includes the member’s name or firm name. However, the marks may not be used in institutional advertising by franchisors.
Test Your Knowledge
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For more guidance about proper use of the REALTOR® Trademarks, check out these resources:
- Membership Marks Manual
View examples of correct and incorrect uses of the marks in this manual, produced by NAR's Legal Affairs team.
- Video: Make Our Marks Remarkable
Watch this entertaining three-minute video to learn how to protect the value of the mark by using it properly.
- Logos and Trademark Rules
Download REALTOR® logos, learn about trademark use on social media, and more.