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

1. EXCERPT: Guide to TN Agency Law
2. Upcoming Courses & Events!
3. Almost No Change in Rates

1. EXCERPT: Guide to TN Agency Law

A complete Guide to Tennessee’s Agency Law has been produced by the Tennessee Association of REALTORS (TAR), in cooperation with the Tennessee Real Estate Educational Foundation (TREEF).  It’s now available for FREE to all licensees, brokers, and instructors and can be downloaded in PDF format HERE! [There is also a link to this Guide to the Newsroom Section of the TAR Website.]

Following is an excerpt from the Guide:


MYTH: You can be a seller’s agent (the listing agent) and a facilitator for the buyer at the same time.

Wrong! A licensee can only wear one “agency hat” at a time in a given transaction. A licensee cannot be working as a seller’s agent for a seller whose property the licensee has listed and simultaneously represent himself/herself as a facilitator to an unrepresented buyer who might like to purchase that property! At best, this practice is deceptive and an obvious effort to gain or keep everyone’s trust without telling them the truth. A licensee has only one agency status at a time in a transaction.

If the licensee is the listing agent, for example, and a buyer approaches the licensee regarding this property, then normally the licensee would disclose to this buyer that he/she represents the seller. There is nothing in Tennessee law that prevents a seller’s agent from assisting this buyer, completing an offer to purchase for the buyer (if that’s what the buyer wants to do), presenting that offer, etc., while the licensee remains a seller’s agent …as long as the buyer knows that the licensee represents the seller and is going to promote the seller’s best interests.

Some Tennessee firms have adopted office policies that call for their salespeople to default to facilitator status automatically if they have listed a property and an unrepresented buyer approaches them regarding their listing. The listing agreement used by these offices typically includes language by which the seller gives prior consent for their listing agent’s default to facilitator status if an unrepresented buyer comes along. If a licensee’s office policy dictates this kind of action, the licensee is STILL obligated to go back to the seller at the time he/she defaults to facilitator and communicate to the seller that the licensee no longer represents him/her (confirming this subsequent disclosure in writing).

Once a licensee tells any party or prospective party to a transaction that the licensee is a facilitator, the licensee is saying, “I don’t represent anybody – seller or buyer – as an agent in this transaction!”


As noted in last week’s DIGEST, agency topped the list of problems nationally in NAR’s 2009 Legal Scan! To download the complete Guide in PDF format, click HERE.

2. Upcoming TAR Courses & Events!

July 27: TAR Forms 101 (Nashville, TAR Office), 4 hours CE. For more information, go HERE.

July 27: TransactionDesk Basic Course (Nashville, TAR Office), 3 hours CE. For more information, go HERE.

A Special Event for Educators & Instructors: On July 28-29, TREEF will host its Educators Conference 2009, an annual event with sessions and workshops for instructors and association staff. For more information, go HERE.

Instructor-Training: On August 27-28. we will hold another offering of our popular two-day instructor-training workshop, “The Learning-Centered Instructor”, at the TAR Office in Nashville, accredited for 16 hours of CE. For more information, go HERE.

TAR’s 2009 Annual Convention! From September 15th – 19th, TAR will be hosting the 2009 TAR Annual Convention in Clear Point, Alabama, at the Grand Hotel Marriott Resort, Golf Club, & Spa. National speakers include real estate guru Stefan Swanepoel, Karel Murray, Internet-savvy Randy Eagar, and productivity wizard Merlin Mann! For more information about the Convention program or our hotel in Point Clear, go HERE.

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

3. Almost No Change in Rates

Interest on 30-year fixed mortgages settled at an average of 5.42 percent this past week, reports Freddie Mac, up from 5.38 percent in the previous week but lower than the prevailing rate of 6.45 percent a year ago. Five-year, hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages also bumped up a couple of notches to 4.99 percent; but 15-year fixed loans and one-year ARMs moved in the opposite direction. The former slipped to 4.87 percent from 4.89 percent, while the latter fell to 4.93 percent from 4.95 percent.

[SOURCES: Freddie Mac; Information, Inc.]


After this issue, we are changing email distribution of the TAR DIGEST. The current email distribution list for the TAR DIGEST will be discontinued at this time!

There will be no TAR DIGEST next week.

MEMBERS: Starting with the 7-14-09 issue, the TAR DIGEST will be emailed to ALL TAR members who have a valid email address in their NRDS records (that the local associations of REALTORS maintain). NOTE: TAR Members no longer need to subscribe! To continue receiving the DIGEST in July and beyond, please ensure that your local association of REALTORS has entered your current, correct email address in NRDS.

NON-MEMBERS: Non-members (e.g., office managers) who have been receiving the TAR DIGEST may re-subscribe at the TAR DIGEST website AFTER JULY 10. [Do NOT re-subscribe before then. The current email list will be deleted just before that date.]

The TAR DIGEST will still be posted on the website, for easy searchable access to past editions, and access to a printer-friendly current edition.

TAR’s Home Page: