Code of Ethics
The American Association of Private Lenders has been committed to a structure of common principles and standards of practice since AAPL’s inception, in 2009. This commitment was formalized as the Association’s first formal Code of Ethics. This Code has been modified and adapted as the profession(s) and laws have changed. However, the Code has been maintained as an inspirational document that defines what we aspire to do in our professional practices. The Code does not contain solutions to specific situations or problems but is designed to provide guidance to members and certified individuals as they make professional decisions. The Code of Ethics reflects what we value as professionals and establishes expectations based on principles of duty, fairness, and responsibility. The AAPL Code of Ethics is intended to ensure the welfare of the consumer and to protect the reputation and integrity of the private lending profession.
The Code of Ethics serves as a framework and focused guide for its members in support of day-to-day decision-making regarding professional conduct. The importance of an ethical code for any profession cannot be underestimated. The Code of Ethics and its enforcement is designed to promote positive outcomes for individuals who work with any AAPL member (i.e., private lenders, hard money lenders, and all service providers).
AAPL members voluntarily agree to abide by the following:
- Members will adhere to all laws with respect to services in which they are engaged including but not limited to: all lending, fund-raising, and loan servicing.
- Members will not discriminate against potential or actual borrowers based on their sex, age, race, sexual orientation, or religion.
- Members will be honest and forthright in all their dealings with their borrowers, investors, financiers, service providers, and the association.
- Members’ loan offering terms will not be changed from the original proposed terms without just cause. Members’ lending practices reflect their integrity and no “Bait & Switch” lending practices are tolerated.
- When originating a loan, it is our members’ desire to see the loan succeed and perform in accordance to the agreed upon terms. At no time will our members originate a loan based solely on the desire to see the recipient fail with the express intention of obtaining title to the property.
- Advertisements for products and services shall be truthful and will adhere to all laws, specifically defined through the Truth-in-Advertising Act under the FTC.
- All members will respect the intellectual property rights of others and will comply with applicable laws and regulations related to copyrights, trademarks, patents, and trade secrets.
Members will conduct their business practices in a professional manner at all times.
While the Code of Ethics establishes obligations that may be higher than those mandated by law, in any instance where the Code of Ethics and the law conflict, the obligations of the law must take precedence.
All members voluntarily agree to adhere to the AAPL’s Code of Ethics to ensure long-term viability and success of the industry. In accordance with the terms of the membership agreement, eligible members in good standing may be granted a revocable authorization to display AAPL’s trademarks as defined to proudly show their voluntary adherence to the AAPL Code of Ethics.
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