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The 8-19-14 Newsletter of the Tennessee Association of REALTORS
Editor: Pug Scoville


1. Upcoming COURSES & EVENTS
2. TAR Officer Nominees Announced!
3. TREC Disciplinary Actions in July
4. Risk Management – Best Practices
5. Commercial Real Estate Seminar
6. Reminder: RPAC-A-THON on Wednesday!
7. HOT LINE: Forms Compliant With New Regs?
8. HOT LINE: File Storage in a Designated Agency Office?
9. HOT LINE: How to Handle Multiple Offers?
10. Check Your Own CE Hours, Etc.

“When I was growing up I always wanted to be someone. Now I realize I should have been more specific.” — Lily Tomlin

NOTE: If you’re reading this on a mobile device (iPhone, etc.), GO HERE for a mobile-friendly DIGEST.


1. Upcoming COURSES & EVENTS

Aug. 21: Agency in Tennessee (4 hrs. CE) – TAR Office, Nashville. For more information or to register, go HERE.

Aug. 28: Commercial Real Estate Seminar (3 hrs. CE) – TAR Office, Nashville. For more information or to register, go HERE.

Sept. 3: TransactionDesk Basic (3 hrs. CE) – TAR Office, Nashville. For more information or to register, go HERE.

Sept. 3: TransactionDesk Advanced (3 hrs. CE) – TAR Office, Nashville. For more information or to register, go HERE.

To see our 2014 GRI Schedule, go to: http://www.tarnet.com/education/gri/

Why Should YOU Earn Your GRI? 10 Reasons!

To see upcoming offerings of TREC CORE COURSES, ABR COURSES, etc., – at locations around the state – go to the TAR Calendar at: http://www.tarnet.com/meetings-and-events/calendar-of-events/

National Joke Day is upon us but these savings are no joke. Have a laugh and save 20% on any CE Shop purchase in August using promo code “joke20“. Get 20% off your entire online CE courses this month! Enroll today: http://tarnet.theceshop.com/ …and enter promo code “joke20” at checkout to receive your discount!


2. TAR Officer Nominees Announced!

Memphis Realtor Pat Beech will be TAR’s 2015 President. The TAR Nominating Committee recently announced its slate of nominees for other 2015 TAR Officers:

2015 President-elect: Randy Durham, Chattanooga
2015 Secretary-Treasurer: Margaret Dixon, Mt. Juliet
2014-2015 Division 1 VP: Nancy Guy, Memphis
2014-2015 Division 2 VP: Hagan Stone, Nashville
2014-2015 Division 3 VP: Doyle Webb, Knoxville

If elected in September (by the TAR Board of Directors), new officers will take office in the latter part of November, 2014! Continuing members of next year’s TAR Executive Committee will be: Neal Clayton (Nashville) as Immediate Past President, Division 1 VP Alex Bynum (Dresden), Division 2 VP Chris Garrett (Murfreesboro), and Division 3 VP Sharon Duncan (Kingsport).

Congratulations to all of the nominees!


3. TREC Disciplinary Actions in July

At its July meeting, the Tennessee Real Estate Commission (TREC) imposed significant fines ($1,000-$4,000), and additional penalties (classes, etc.), on eleven (11) individuals for the following offenses:

Failure to be loyal to the interests of the client (MULTIPLE)
Engaging in unlicensed activity (MULTIPLE)
Advertising without a firm telephone number (MULTIPLE)
Posting signs on property without the firm name in letters the same size or larger than the licensee’s (MULTIPLE)
Failure to adequately supervise activities of affiliates
Failure to adequately supervise activities of affiliates (Advertising)
Failure to timely disburse/interplead earnest money
Failing to furnish a copy of a contract relevant to all signatories at the time of execution
Failure to diligently exercise reasonable skill and care
Failure to maintain Errors and Omissions Insurance
Failing to preserve records on a real estate transaction for three (3) years

NOTE: The (MULTIPLE) notation indicates that more than one licensee was punished for this reason.

IN ADDITION TO the above, four (4) other licensees had their licenses suspended by the Commission.


4. Risk Management – Best Practices

RISMedia ran an article by Jan O’Brien recently, highlighting 12 “Best Practices” for risk reduction. It’s useful as you evaluate your own practices and the full article would also make a great sales meeting discussion.

To minimize litigation risks, Realtors should use standard procedures for all clients and prospects, keep a communication log for each transaction, and use email to confirm conversations and verbal agreements. They should retain all paperwork, emails, and correspondence for each transaction and always recommend three vendors, contractors, inspectors, and other professionals. Moreover, they should recommend that clients have a home inspection and home warranty, asking them to sign waivers if they refuse; disclose, rather than diagnose; and educate clients about various aspects of the process, from short sales to earnest money, and set appropriate expectations. Realtors should ensure that buyers are ready, able, and willing to purchase and that sellers are ready, able, and willing to sell. Finally, they should use checklists to keep on top of things and be sure to communicate with all parties involved in the transaction on a regular basis.

To read more, go HERE.


5. Commercial Real Estate Seminar

As noted in the list of Upcoming Events above, TAR is offering a 3-hour Commercial Real Estate Seminar on Aug. 28 at the TAR Office in Nashville, in conjunction with a Nashville law firm. This seminar will present topics such as the Landlord Tenant Act, Broker Agreements, Real Estate Disputes, Arbitration, Receivership and more. To register, go HERE.


6. Reminder: RPAC-A-THON on Wednesday!

On Wednesday, August 20, the Tennessee Association of REALTORS is holding a RPAC-A-THON to encourage all REALTORS to step up and invest in RPAC. Volunteers will be calling REALTORS across the state to increase the REALTOR Party power.

And TAR needs your help! To join your fellow REALTORS at a location near you, go to: http://www.tarnet.com/RPAC-A-Thon/

Or, avoid the call and make your RPAC investment today by going HERE.


7. HOT LINE: Forms Compliant With New Regs?

QUESTION: In regards to the recent rule changes, how do they impact the TAR forms that we are using?

ANSWER: The current 2014 TAR forms are in compliance with all recent law and rules changes that are now in effect.

TAR will also stay on top of the proposed TREC Rules, referenced in last week’s DIGEST (http://www.tardigest.com/8-12-14-tar-digest/). In the event that the proposed rules are approved following the Rulemaking Hearing on November 4, 2014, TAR will ensure that the forms are in compliance. If you have any comments, questions, concerns regarding the proposed rules, you are welcome to attend the Rulemaking Hearing. You can also contact Chris Sexton at TAR. He will forward your concerns to the Governmental Affairs Committee.

TAR’s Forms Committee stays on top of all law and rules changes. This is why it’s so important to use the latest version of TAR forms when they are issued. TAR will review the rules that were just proposed and will take its concerns to the Rulemaking Hearing.

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


8. HOT LINE: File Storage in a Designated Agency Office?

QUESTION: Just checking to see if you can help me concerning the storage of files in a Designated Agency office? It seems like you have addressed this issue before.

ANSWER: If your office practices Designated Agency, as many offices do, each sales associate’s files must be stored such that only the agent assigned to the file has access to that file. This measure protects client confidentiality, since two agents in the same office, as Designated Agents (one for the buyer and the other for a seller), could find themselves negotiating with each other on behalf of their clients. Therefore, the files could be kept in individual offices, or in separate locked file cabinets located centrally in the office.

In this situation, if the managing broker is also actively listing and working with buyers, the broker may wish to appoint an office manager or other individual to review paperwork and ensure that each sales associate is documenting all actions appropriately.

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


9. HOT LINE: How to Handle Multiple Offers?

QUESTION: I have a listing and two people are going to be making offers on it this week. If you could give me a quick rundown on how to handle a multiple offer situation, I would appreciate it.

ANSWER: First, congratulations on having a property in demand!

There are a couple of ways that multiple offers can be handled. The listing agent must present all offers to the seller of course. Then the seller has several options.

One, the seller can review the offers received and select one to counter. The other option would be to notify all interested buyers to submit their highest and best offer by a particular date and time. The seller would then review all offers and select the one they wish to work.

TAR has a form for the second option. You can review form F37, the Multiple Offer Disclosure and Notification form.

The Code of Ethics also addresses multiple offers. Standard of Practice 1-15 states:

“Realtors, in response to inquiries from buyers or cooperating brokers shall, with the sellers’ approval, disclose the existence of offers on the property. Where disclosure is authorized, Realtors shall also disclose, if asked, whether offers were obtained by the listing licensee, another licensee in the listing firm, or by a cooperating broker.

Either option is permissible. REMEMBER: it is up to the seller as to which route he wishes to pursue.

To my knowledge, there is no time limit for deciding to enter into a multiple offer situation. It can be at anytime before an offer is accepted. However, your office may have policies concerning this, so check with your broker.

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


10. Check Your Own CE Hours, Etc.

To check your CE credits on file with TREC, go to: http://verify.tn.gov

To go to the TAR website: http://www.tarnet.com

To access current and past TAR DIGESTS: http://www.tardigest.com

Follow TAR on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/tnaor

TAR’s LinkedIn page: http://www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=852077&trk=hb_side_g

TAR’s page on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Nashville-TN/Tennessee-Association-of-RealtorsR/15041383689

To ask a TAR Legal and Ethics Hot Line question: http://www.tarnet.com/services-support/legal-ethics-hotline/

For CE classroom courses around the state, go to: http://www.tarnet.com/education/realtor-courses/

For online CE courses, go to: http://www.tarnet.com/education/online-courses/

Tennessee Real Estate Commission: http://tn.gov/regboards/trec/


 

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