The History and Growth of The REALTORS® Association of Jamaica

The REALTORS® Association of Jamaica (RAJ) (formerly The Jamaica Association of Real Estate Brokers and Appraisers) was formed in 1966 by local real estate professionals.  At that time, there were no existing legislations and governing regulations and the Association sought to create a regulatory framework and a Professional Code of Conduct. Today, the REALTORS® Association of Jamaica is the only professional organization for the practicing select Real Estate Professionals throughout the island.  All its members are holders of Dealers and/or Salesman Licensees and Valuers from the Real Estate Board; the statutory body which regulates the Real Estate Industry in Jamaica; and which is a creation of an Act of Parliament (1987).

The RAJ holds affiliate membership in the National Association of REALTORS® (N.A.R.), U.S.A.  NAR has the largest membership of Real Estate Practitioners throughout the world, well of over 1.5 million. We are also a member of the Private Sector Organization of Jamaica (P.S.O.J) and have a seat on the Real Estate Board and the Commission of Strata Corporations. The REALTORS® Association is a powerful lobbying organization that aims to effect positive changes for affordable housing solutions, better communities, improved systems and governance of the real estate industry.

The RAJ operates under a strict Code of Ethics which has been adopted from the National Association of REALTORS® NAR.  This Code establishes obligations on its members which maybe higher than those mandated by Law in some jurisdictions. Additionally, it impose obligations to the Public, and all industry stakeholders, customers and non -customers.

REALTORS® recognize that the interest of the nation and its citizens require the highest and best use of the land and its widest distribution of ownership.  This requires the creation of adequate housing, the building of functioning cities, the development of productive industries and the preservation of a healthful environment. 

Such interests impose obligations beyond those of ordinary commerce.  These impose grave social responsibilities and patriotic duties to which Realtors® are dedicated.

As REALTORS®, we are diligent in preparing ourselves to maintain and improve our calling of a common responsibility for integrity and honour.

In recognition and appreciation of our obligation to clients, customers, the public and each other “REALTORS®” strive to become knowledgeable and remain informed professionals, engaging the “best practices” of the highest standards and ethics.

REALTORS® are committed to assist the appropriate regulatory bodies of a country to eliminate practices which may damage the public or which may discredit or bring dishonour to the Real Estate Profession and the Industry as a whole. Consequently we have representation on a number of Government boards including the Real Estate Board and the Commission of Strata Corporations.

Cooperation with other Real Estate Professionals, promotes the Radyo Dinle best interest of those who utilize our services.  REALTORS® are urged to adopt exclusive representation of clients, but will not attempt to gain unfair advantage over our competitors.

The term “REALTOR®” has come to connote competency, fairness and high integrity.  No inducement or instructions from clients can ever justify departure from this ideal.  It is the foregoing that sets the “REALTOR®” apart from other Real Estate Practitioners.

The membership of the REALTORS® Association of Jamaica has grown exponentially from a small membership of under 30 in 1966 to over 850 in 2018.  These are some of the benefits which accrue to our members:-

  1. Group health and life insurance plan at competitive rates
  2. Special discount with tele-communication provider
  3. Access to the Multiple Listing Service (MLS).  The MLS listings are directly fed into the international website which gives our Realtors® and their listings the greatest level of internet exposure.
  4. Continuous training and development to sharpen their competitive advantages. With the association with the NAR, our members have access to first class training facilities, tools and networking opportunities.

In May 2010 the Association launched its Multiple Listing Service (MLS) website on which its members may place listings of local and international properties for sales, rentals.
This Association is blessed with multi-talented membership.  Their hard work and dedication have kept the Association strong and vibrant.  The RAJ endeavours to offer the highest and best quality of general services to the public.  Included among those services are:

  1. Providing selected International Real Estate Market information
  2. Dissemination of other relevant statistical data

Lobbying with the Government on matters of national importance for the Real Estate Industry. A prime example of our efforts was the reduction in the Stamp duty and Transfer Tax. Our representation at the PSOJ and the REB/Strata Corporations also strengthens our lobbying capabilities.