CalBRE has issued a second Licensee Alert about its continuing concerns with salespersons who use names that may mislead consumers into believing that the salesperson is a broker or has an “independent” real estate business.
The two examples cited are a salesperson, John Doe, advertising as Doe Real Estate, and salespersons who brand themselves as “independent” real estate practitioners. CalBRE believes that both scenarios would mislead the public into thinking that the salesperson is a broker instead of a salesperson who must be supervised by a broker. Additionally, CalBRE cautions brokers who are allowing or supporting such practices. Since this is CalBRE’s second Alert on this topic proceed with care.
Likely in response to the confusion that many are experiencing when using team names, CalBRE has just produced a new May 2017, Frequently Asked Questions Regarding “Team Names”. The question being asked is can a team use the terms “brokerage,” “real estate,” or “realty” as part of a team name?
BRE clearly states that the words “broker,” “real estate broker,” or “real estate brokerage” CANNOT be used as part of a team name because they imply a separate, independent brokerage. However, they also clarify that “because the law does not prohibit” the use of the words “realty” or “real estate,” such terms can be used as part of a team name so long as the surname of at least one team member is included and the team name also includes the words “team,” “group,” or “associates.” The example given as acceptable is “The Smith Real Estate Team.”