IREM Code of Professional Ethics Article 10-Compliance with Laws and Regulations

By Brown, Maleta J. | Journal of Property Management, September-October 2013 | Go to article overview

IREM Code of Professional Ethics Article 10-Compliance with Laws and Regulations


Brown, Maleta J., Journal of Property Management


Article 10 of the IREM Code of Professional Ethics is arguably the most clear-cut Article of the fourteen that we, as IREM Members, pledge to uphold. This article addresses issues of compliance with the law in conjunction with the management of real estate. Article 10 states, "A member shall at all times conduct business and personal activities with knowledge of and in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations." It is our duty to know, adhere to and stay current with laws and regulations that govern the management of the assets that are entrusted to us by our owners and companies. To the degree that we as managers do not meet these obligations, we fail our clients and we fail to uphold the pledge that we have taken as members of the Institute. It brings to mind a favorite saying of my grandmothers that I have heard her apply to many situations over the years: "That's just wrong!"

In the United States, there is a wide variety of Federal laws that govern general aspects of real estate management such as showing, leasing, maintaining and even proper documentation of adherence to federal laws. The first laws that most likely come to the forefront of your thoughts are laws that govern property features that relate to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). However, there are abundantly more Federal laws that are applicable to the actual operations of managing properties. In fact, real property that is owned by the Federal government, occupied by Federal tenants or recipients of Federal funds is bound to follow an additional set of regulations.

In addition to Federal laws, states, counties and municipalities all have laws in place related to real property that must be adhered to as well. Owners contract with and depend on the management agents to make sure that their assets are in compliance and remain in compliance with these laws. Building leases, occupancy, fire protection, tenant improvements, facade maintenance, mechanical systems, inspections and permits are some of the areas of consideration that fall within the scope of issues that we confront as managers on daily basis.

Having to keep all of these various levels of laws and regulations in mind can seem overwhelming--and it most definitely can be. …

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