Ringer equivalency numberIn telecommunication, a ringer equivalency number (REN) is a number determined in accordance with the Code of Federal Regulations, Title 47, part 68, which number represents the ringer loading effect on a line.
Note: A ringer equivalency number of 1 represents the loading effect of a single traditional telephone set ringing circuit. Modern telephone instruments may have a REN lower than 1. The total REN expresses the total loading effect of the subscriber's equipment on the central office ringing current generator. The service provider usually sets a limit, e.g., 3, 4, or 5 (representing "extension," i.e., parallel-connected telephones), to the total REN on a subscriber's loop. The actual number of instruments across the loop may be greater than the service provider's REN limit, if their respective individual RENs are less than 1.
Source: from Federal Standard 1037C