Can I use the REALTOR® logo in my marketing?

QUESTION: I would like to create an image for use in my marketing that would include a likeness of myself along with the REALTOR® logo. Would that be okay?

ANSWER: The National Association of REALTORS® owns a number of trademarks, including the term REALTOR® and the block “R” REALTOR® logo, referred to collectively as the “Marks.” In order to preserve the value of the Marks, NAR has implemented a program that governs their use. Members and Member Boards are only permitted to use the Marks in a way that highlights to the public the registered status, significance, and special meaning of the Marks and distinguishes them from words of ordinary use and other marks or symbols. The rules for proper use of the Marks are set forth in the NAR Membership Marks Manual, a copy of which is available on the NAR website by clicking here.

There are a number of rules in the Manual regarding the use of the REALTOR® logo in an image like the one you describe. For one thing, the “context of use limitation” requires that the Logo be used only in connection with a member’s name or the member’s firm name and address. See page 9 of the Manual. Therefore, your name would need to appear in connection with the Logo in any image you create.

Another requirement is that the REALTOR® Logo must appear separated from other objects. According to the Manual, “[t]o enhance the distinctiveness and recognizability of the REALTOR® Logo, an ‘area of isolation’ should be maintained around each use of the REALTOR® Logo. This area of isolation is an amount of space equal to half the width of the block “R.” This space keeps the REALTOR® Logo separate from other objects, such as typography, illustration, photography, borders, geometric shapes, or the edge of the printed piece.” Therefore, the Logo needs to be properly placed in any image you create. There are also other technical requirements regarding the proper form of use of the Logo beginning on page 12 of the Manual.

We strongly encourage you to consult the Manual and to ask questions if you are uncertain whether a proposed use of the Logo or the term REALTOR® is appropriate BEFORE you begin using them!

© Copyright 2019 - 2023. North Carolina Association of REALTORS®, Inc.

This article is intended solely for the benefit of NC REALTORS® members, who may reproduce and distribute it to other NC REALTORS® members and their clients, provided it is reproduced in its entirety without any change to its format or content, including disclaimer and copyright notice, and provided that any such reproduction is not intended for monetary gain. Any unauthorized reproduction, use or distribution is prohibited.