What is “organized real estate” and why you would consider becoming a voluntary member

In a previous post I discussed “The acronyms” of “organized real estate“. The purpose of that post was twofold:

1. to explain what is meant by the phrase “organized real estate”; and

2. to emphasize that one can be licensed as either a “sales person” or “broker” under the Ontario Real Estate and Business Brokers Act” (“REBBA”) and NOT be a member of “organized real estate”.

Who you are (a licensed broker under “REBBA”) is different from the organizations to which you may belong (“CREA”, “OREA”, “TREB”, etc.). As you consider how to best build your real estate career, you will certainly consider which of the many associations of “organized real estate” to which you wish to belong.

What do the “organizations” of “organized real estate” actually do?

CREA – Canadian Real Estate Association – National Association of Organized Real Estate Organizations

Information about the services and benefits that CREA provides is here.

OREA – Ontario Real Estate Association

Information about the benefits and services that OREA provides is here. Notice that OREA is the umbrella organization for a number of local Ontario real estate boards.

As I previously posted, RECO has announced that effective 2019, the education and training of Ontario real estate agents and brokers is to be transferred from OREA to Humber College. (The transition away from OREA was the result of RECO discussions and consultations that began in 2014.)

TREB – Toronto Real Estate Board:

The services offered by the Toronto Real Estate Board are found here.

The advantages and disadvantages and disadvantages to joining “organized real estate”


1. The usual advantages of being a voluntary member of a professional association.

2. The right to use the CREA trademarks.


There is one disadvantage. It is the membership fees.

Key takeaway …

1. Those who are actively engaged in the real estate business will almost certainly be a member of “organized real estate”.

2. Your real estate license comes from RECO and your license is NOT dependent on being a member of “organized real estate”.

Those who wish to take a break, sabbatical or vacation from the “real estate business” can still maintain your real estate license (it comes from RECO) without being a member of “organized real estate”. You can simply transfer your real estate license to a brokerage that is NOT a member of “organized real estate”. By “parking”, “storing” or “shelving” your license you can keep your real estate license active and not lose it.

3. It costs far less to be affiliated with a broker who is NOT a member of “organized real estate” than to be affiliated with a broker who IS a member of “organized real estate”.

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