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

1. Returning to Fundamental Economic Values
2. 2009 TAR Officers Elected, Installed
3. 2008 State Awards Announced!
4. NEW Insurance Option Announced!
5. HOT LINE: Co-listing Dilemma
6. HOT LINE: Surprised by a “Bonus”
7. 30-Year Rates at Seven-Month Low

1. Returning to Fundamental Economic Values

Stories about the nation’s financial crisis have dominated the national news lately. Unfortunately, since we are in the midst of an election season when everyone becomes a little crazier than normal, charges of blame have been flying back and forth …overshadowing any calmer assessments of how – long-term – we work our way out of this mess!

That’s why we welcomed a commentary posted last week (“Sacrifice over excess”) by Bradley Inman, head honcho for Inman News. Regardless of whether you agree or disagree with all that Brad Inman lays out as cause, effect, and remedy, his call for a return to fundamental values is refreshing:

Today, we face a long recovery to an economic calamity that has been long in the making and will not be resolved with quick fixes. It will take time as well as a return to fundamental economic values. This is not about family values, but conservative — not political — personal financial values and wise public policies that favor savings over irrational debt, that give up short-term consumption for sacrifice, and that reward investment not speculation.
*** END QUOTE ***

To read the whole commentary (you can even add your own comments in response at the same site), go HERE.

[SOURCE: Inman News]

2. 2009 TAR Officers Elected, Installed

This past week, at the TAR Annual Convention iin Chattanooga, the following individuals were elected and stalled as TAR’s top officers for 2009:

2009 President – Fontaine Taylor (Memphis)

2009 President-elect – B. J. Swinehart (Knoxville)

2009 Secretary/Treasurer – Emil Mongeon (Franklin)

2009-2010 Division 1 VP – John Snyder (Memphis)

2009-2010 Division 2 VP – Marlene Rakow (Columbia)

2009-2010 Division 3 VP – Doris Barnes (Pigeon Forge)

Congratulations to all of the new TAR officers!

Three divisional vice presidents will continue on the TAR Executive Committee in the second year of their terms: Sue Turner (Memphis), Janice Carlton (Shelbyville), and Randy Thomas (Kingsport).

3. 2008 State Awards Announced!

Another major event at the TAR Annual Convention was the announcement of the recipients of TAR’s four highest awards:

2008 REALTOR of the Year: Christie Wilson (Nashville)

2008 Presidential Award: Christie Wilson (Nashville)

2008 State REALTOR Educator of the Year: Ron Poe (Memphis attorney)

2008 Outstanding GRI Student of the Year: Martha Miller (Chattanooga)

If you know ANY of these individuals, please join us in congratulating them on their outstanding service and achievements!!

4. NEW Insurance Option Announced!

Need Assistance with Heath Insurance? Last week, 2008 TAR President Mike Gaughan announced a new strategic alliance with a health insurance broker, Sound Healthcare:

TAR offers this information to assist you in your search for affordable health insurance. Sound Healthcare is not an insurance company, but is instead an insurance broker who works with many insurance companies to identify an option to fit your individual needs. This is NOT a group plan; it’s a service for individuals. Sound Healthcare feels that, with group buying power, they can find quality health insurance for TAR members at an affordable price. There is, however, NO guarantee that you’ll be able to find coverage. This is simply a source of information and a place to start when shopping for insurance.

While TAR and NAR continue to work toward the day when we can make true group coverage for health insurance available through your REALTOR organization, we hope that brokers like Sound Healthcare can expand the number of options presently available to you.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, please contact:
Sound Healthcare
R. J. Stillwell, Executive Director
PHONE: 615-256-8667

[Please direct all questions about this coverage to R. J. Stillwell.]

5. HOT LINE: Co-listing Dilemma

QUESTION: We have an agent in the office who is the co-listing agent for a property. The other agent is with a different company. On the MLS they are showing it as co-listed. We have not seen any of the paperwork. We have copies of their contracts, but nothing with the buyer’s signature on paperwork for our office or company. As a managing broker, I need to know what to do.

ANSWER: It does not matter whose forms are used. However, BOTH companies and agents have to be on the listing agreements and all the other documents, and both companies should have copies of everything. Please understand that the two companies are EQUALLY responsible for everything on the transaction. Everyone in the transaction is responsible from a liability standpoint AND from an audit standpoint.

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

6. HOT LINE: Surprised by a “Bonus”

QUESTION: I represent the sellers with the sale of their home. An agent from another company representing the buyer brought me an offer on my listing. The offer included a $2,000 bonus for the selling agent, BUT I never advertised a bonus on the MLS or anywhere, because one was not offered by the seller! While reviewing the offer prior to presenting it to my sellers, I asked the buyer’s agent why he was to receive a bonus? (I thought perhaps the seller had mentioned it to him in passing.) He told me that he just had to work extra hard with the buyers, showing them a lot of properties, and he thought he deserved it. I presented the offer to my sellers which I think they may accept, because they really need to move the property. Did this other agent act properly?

ANSWER: NO. This was VERY inappropriate on the other agent’s part. The purchase and sales agreement is NOT the place for the agent to negotiate the payment of a commission or a bonus. The agent is not a party to the contract. Furthermore, he is not permitted to “hold an agreement hostage” for his own benefit. Finally, he is also putting his own interests above that of his buyer which is in violation of the Broker’s Act and the Code of Ethics.

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

7. 30-Year Rates at Seven-Month Low!

Freddie Mac reports a decline in the 30-year fixed mortgage rate to 5.78 percent during the week ended Sept. 18 from 5.93 percent the prior week, marking the lowest level in seven months. During the same period, the 15-year mortgage rate dropped to 5.35 percent from 5.54 percent. Meanwhile, interest on five-year adjustable mortgages slipped to 5.67 percent from 5.87 percent; and the one-year ARM slid to 5.03 percent from 5.21 percent.

[SOURCES: Information, Inc.; Freddie Mac]


Sept. 24-25: GRI 1 – Professionalism in Real Estate (Knoxville)

Oct. 2: Residential Forms Committee Meeting (TAR Office, Nashville)

Oct. 9: Surround Sound Training by NAR (TAR Office, Nashville) …this event “by invitation only”

Oct. 9-10: GRI 5 – Systems for Success (Memphis)

Oct. 16: Commercial Forms Committee Meeting (TAR Office, Nashville)

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