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


CONTENTS
1. The Turning of the Tide
2. HOT LINE: Referral Fee When License Is Retired?
3. HOT LINE: Contacting the Owner of a Listed Property?
4. Where ARE You?
5. WORKING SMARTER: Cultivating & Generating Referrals
6. UPCOMING COURSES & EVENTS
7. REALTOR License Plate Update!
8. Rates Inch Upward


1. The Turning of the Tide

A couple of weeks ago, we referenced a cautiously optimistic outlook on the economy (“Is the End in Sight?”) by NAR’s former Chief Economist John Tuccillo. At the end of last week, John sounded even more positive: “…Real estate professionals who are in this for the long haul are back in business in a big way. All in all, the late summer beginning of the recovery appears to be right on track.”

To read more, go HERE.

[SOURCE: RealBlogging.com]


2. HOT LINE: Referral Fee When License Is Retired?

QUESTION: Can an agent who has retired their license be paid a referral fee?

ANSWER: It will depend upon whether the agent’s license was active when the property came under contract. An agent is deemed to earn their commission or referral fee when the contract is signed. Therefore, even if their license is inactive or in retirement when the property closes, they will still get their commission.

HOWEVER, if the agent’s license was not active when the property went under contract, then that agent cannot be paid the commission or referral fee. Furthermore, whether the agent is entitled to a commission or referral fee will depend upon the terms of their independent contractor’s agreement.

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


3. HOT LINE: Contacting the Owner of a Listed Property?

QUESTION: Under Tennessee law, can you contact a person who already has their house listed?

ANSWER: This will depend upon the reason for contacting that seller. If you know that the person has already listed their property and are trying to solicit the listing away from another agent, this is NOT permitted. It would be in violation of BOTH Tennessee law AND the NAR Code of Ethics. Any communication with that seller should be done through the agent with whom they have an exclusive listing.

If a seller contacts you directly to try and break their listing with someone else, you should advise them that you cannot assist them while they are under contract with another agent.

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


4. Where ARE You?

At last week’s meeting of the Tennessee Real Estate Commission (TREC) in Memphis, the Commission staff noted the State of Tennessee does not forward their mail. If an agent has a new address and has not changed it with TREC, then their mail from the Real Estate Commission ends up in someone else’s waste basket.

PLEASE make sure that you change your mailing address with the Real Estate Commission and keep it current!

You can always check much of the information that TREC has on file for you — including the CE credits you’ve earned — by searching for your own license record at:
http://licsrch.state.tn.us/

Any email from your State and National Associations of REALTORS may also get lost — or never delivered — IF you do not keep your local association advised when you change email addresses …so they can update your NRDS record!

[SOURCES: TREC; TAR]


5. WORKING SMARTER: Cultivating & Generating Referrals

In the first news item above, John Tuccillo referred to “professionals who are in this for the long haul”. If you’re truly in business for the long haul, then you need a steady stream of referrals to keep your business growing and on track! A new article by trainer Dirk Zeller (“Three Golden Rules For Cultivating Referrals”) covers the steps needed for building a and maintaining a referral-based business. It will be a refresher course for many …but who couldn’t use a refresher every now and then?

To read what Dirk has to say, go HERE.

[SOURCE: RealtyTimes]


6. UPCOMING COURSES & EVENTS

May 12: TAR Forms 101 (TAR Office, Nashville), 4 hours CE. For more information, go HERE.

May 13: TransactionDesk Basic Course (TAR Office, Nashville), 3 hours CE. For more information, go HERE.

May 21-22: GRI 3 – Financing the Successful Transaction (Memphis), 16 hours CE. For more information, go HERE.

FREE – May 18-29: Referral Expo 2009 an online educational opportunity featuring several national speakers, to help you build or REbuild your business! To learn more and register, go HERE.

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

______________________________________________________
7. REALTOR License Plate Update!

As of Monday, May 11, 752 members have purchased the new REALTOR License Plate! That means only 248 more plates need to be purchased before they can go into production! The plates are an attractive way to support your profession and “Celebrate Homeownership!” We’re three-quarters of the way to our goal!

plate-mock

For more information, go to the NEWSROOM section of the TAR website (at http://tnrealtors.com/main/newsroom/) and scroll down to see the License Plate, and order one online! There you can also access a one-page information sheet with more Frequently Asked Questions about the Plates.

______________________________________________________
8. Rates Inch Upward

Freddie Mac reports a jump in the 30-year fixed mortgage rate to 4.84 percent during the week ended May 7 from 4.78 percent the previous week, which matched the record low. Meanwhile, average interest on 15-year fixed loans climbed to 4.51 percent from 4.48 percent. Low borrowing costs have energized the refinance market, which now accounts for about three-quarters of new home-loan requests.

[SOURCES: Information, Inc.; Freddie Mac]


TAR’s Home Page: http://tnrealtors.com

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