The TAR Digest: The Membership Newsletter of the Tennessee Association of Realtors
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Posted by Pug

The Weekly Membership Newsletter of the Tennessee Association of REALTORS
Editor: Pug Scoville


CONTENTS
1. Risks of Walking Away from Mortgage Debt
2. Family “Togetherness” Rules
3. HOT LINE: Wants to See Backup Offer?
4. HOT LINE: Agency Law for Commercial Transactions?
5. GRI and Other Courses
6. Rates Fall Again
7. TAR DIGEST Takes Two-Week Break!

To ask a TAR Legal and Ethics Hot Line question, CLICK HERE.

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1. Risks of Walking Away from Mortgage Debt

A recent article on Bankrate.com – “Risks of walking away from mortgage debt” – highlights the consequences of skipping out on a mortgage.

*** BEGIN QUOTE ***
Foreclosures remain on a credit report for seven years, with the impact gradually lessening over time.

“For someone who has a foreclosure on (his or) her credit report, (his or) her FICO score can generally begin to recover after a couple of years, assuming the consumer stays current with (his or) her payments on all (his or) her other credit accounts,” Watts says.

Watts says the impact of a foreclosure on a credit score depends on other factors in the borrower’s credit history. The ABA [American Bankers Association] says a foreclosure drops a FICO score by 100 to 400 points.

In addition, a voluntary foreclosure can impact a homeowner’s ability to qualify for a new mortgage for years to come.

Peter Fredman, a Berkeley, Calif., consumer attorney, says Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will not approve a mortgage within four years after foreclosure, while the ABA says it can take three to seven years to qualify for a new mortgage.
*** END QUOTE ***

To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.

[SOURCE: Bankrate.com]


2. Family “Togetherness” Rules

A survey by Coldwell Banker Real Estate shows that nearly 75 percent of home buyers with children living at home made purchases within 30 minutes of family, contrary to the business models of homebuilders that promote single-family properties that are less expensive because they are far from densely populated locales.

Morningstar analyst Mike Gaiden says more buyers are seeking suburban and infill properties, particularly multifamily housing on smaller sites. Of the parents polled, 42 percent made purchases within 10 minutes of family and 30 percent bought houses within 11 to 30 minutes of family. Diann Patton, a Coldwell Banker agent, says, “Family is the most important factor, that’s what this survey says.”

[SOURCES: Investors Business Daily; Information, Inc.]


3. HOT LINE: Wants to See Backup Offer?

QUESTION: Is a purchaser’s REALTOR ethically or legally in error for not being able to convince the listing REALTOR to provide a copy of a backup offer that the seller had received from another buyer prior to the sale of this property? The purchaser now wants to see the backup offer for his own satisfaction, even though he had been satisfied when the listing REALTOR simply explained that there was one in discussions prior to the sale.

ANSWER: NO. Confidentiality would prevent a listing agent from disclosing the substance of the second offer unless they have the permission of both the seller and the buyer who made the second offer.

[SOURCE: TAR's Legal & Ethics Hot Line Attorneys]


4. HOT LINE: Agency Law for Commercial Transactions?

QUESTION: Tennessee agency law excludes auctions, commercial, rental/leasing and residential sales of properties of more than four units from the “disclosure” provisions of the act. Do the portions of the act requiring written formation of agency contracts and agency duties apply to the aforementioned activities? Also, the Standards of Practice under Article 16 of the REALTOR Code of Ethics require that REALTORS make these disclosures at all times so doesn’t that mean that REALTORS still have to do the disclosures even in commercial and other types of transactions?`

ANSWER: To your first question, YES, other parts of Tennessee’s agency law – such as requiring that an agency relationship can only be established by a bilateral written agreement or contract – still apply in commercial and other types of transactions. The disclosures are the ONLY parts of the agency law not applicable to commercial transactions, etc.

ALSO, as you correctly point out, the REALTOR Code of Ethics makes no such exception for commercial transactions. If the agent is a REALTOR, then he/she must still disclose agency status under Article 16, adverse facts under Article 2, etc., regardless of any exemptions in Tennessee law!

[SOURCE: TAR's Legal & Ethics Hot Line Attorneys]


5. GRI and Other Courses

Sept. 23 – Oct. 27: GRI 4, From Offer to Contract to Closing (16 hrs. CE) – E-Class distance-learning course. For more information or to register, CLICK HERE.

Sept. 27-28: GRI 6, Sticky Situations (16 hrs. CE) – Memphis. For more information or to register, CLICK HERE.

Sept. 29-30: GRI 5, Systems for Success (16 hrs. CE) – Jackson. For more information or to register, CLICK HERE.

CLICK HERE for the complete 2010 schedule of Classroom and E-Class GRI Courses!

In addition to GRI Courses:

Sept. 10: 2009-2010 Core CE Course (4 hrs. CE) – Clarksville. For more information or to register, CLICK HERE.

Sept. 15-17: 2010 TAR Annual Convention (12 hrs. CE) – Memphis. For more information, CLICK HERE.

Sept. 20-21: NAR Green Designation Course (16 hrs. CE) – Clarksville. For more information or to register, CLICK HERE.

Sept. 22: NAR Green Course Residential Elective (8 hrs. CE) – Clarksville. For more information or to register, CLICK HERE.

Sept. 20-21: ABR 2-Day Course (16 hrs. CE) – Knoxville. For more information or to register, CLICK HERE.

Sept. 22: NAR Short Sales & Foreclosure Course (8 hrs. CE) – Knoxville. For more information or to register, CLICK HERE.

Sept. 28: Homeownership Options for Tennessee’s Workforce (6 hrs. CE) – Morristown. For more information or to register, call 423-587-2266.

Watch each week’s TAR DIGEST for schedule changes and additions!


6. Rates Fall Again

Mortgage rates have hit a new record low last week, for the 10th time in 11 weeks as investors continue to turn to Treasury bonds as a safe haven; the shift in money is cutting yields, which mortgage rates tend to follow. Freddie Mac reports that 30-year fixed loans averaged 4.32 percent, down from 4.36 percent a week earlier; and the 15-year fixed rate fell to a new low of 3.83 percent, down from 3.86 percent.

[SOURCES: Freddie Mac; Information, Inc.]


7. TAR DIGEST Takes Two-Week Break!

Due to the TAR Annual Convention next week, and a conversion of our email distribution system taking place this month, the TAR DIGEST will not be published for the next two weeks. Your next issue of the TAR DIGEST will be the Sept. 28 Edition.

We will report major news from the TAR Annual Convention in that 9/28 edition!


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