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


CONTENTS
1. Disaster-Related Sources of Assistance
2. FHA To Lower Cap on Seller Concessions
3. HOT LINE: Listed in 2009, But Sold in 2010?
4. HOT LINE: Seller Excluding Certain Buyers?
5. TECH TIP: Digital Signatures with TransactionDesk
6. A Welcome Testimonial…
7. Rates Hit Another Record Low

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

For other questions about this newsletter, please use the “CONTACT” form HERE.

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1. Disaster-Related Sources of Assistance

FEMA encourages everyone in Tennessee affected by the floods to register immediately for federal assistance.  For those affected by the recent floods, you can register for federal assistance by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or by visiting www.DisasterAssistance.gov.  You can also visit m.fema.gov from your mobile device for information or visit the FEMA-TEMA Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/TNDisasterInfo

Additional Information

The deadline to apply for Physical Damage Disaster Loans is JULY 6!

[SOURCE: FEMA]


2. FHA To Lower Cap on Seller Concessions

The FHA is expected this summer to slash the cap on “seller concessions” from 6 percent of the home price to 3 percent. In announcing the policy change, FHA officials said the 6 percent maximum “exposes the FHA to excess risk by creating incentives to inflate appraised value.” Some have called for a “sliding scale” approach, with higher concessions allowed on lower-priced homes and the lowest concessions permitted on more expensive property. Seller concession rules allow the seller to pay for an array of services and taxes connected with the deal.

[SOURCES: Information, Inc.; Chicago Daily Herald]


3. HOT LINE: Listed in 2009, But Sold in 2010?

QUESTION: If property is listed in 2009 using 2009 forms and a contract is written in May 2010 using the 2010 Purchase and Sale agreement, do all the 2009 listing documents need to be redone using 2010 forms?

ANSWER: As long as the most current version of the form was used when it was executed, then everything is fine. You will just need to make sure that all disclosures were made according to F85 if they were present. Several of the provisions of that form were enacted during 2009.

Therefore, if the seller knows of an exterior injection well, soil absorption rates, percolation tests or if the home was moved from one foundation to another, it must be disclosed. In addition, if the property is in a PUD, the seller must disclose this as well.

[SOURCE: TAR Legal and Ethics Hot Line Attorneys]


4. HOT LINE: Seller Excluding Certain Buyers?

QUESTION: The current owner recently divided her property into two parcels and built a new home on one parcel. She wishes to sell the old home, but she does not want to sell her old home to an investor because she does not want to have renters next to her new home. Can I list the home as available to “owners only” – no investors? She also does not want to sell to the “trashy people” (her words) who now live next to her. I don’t want to violate Fair Housing standards, and this is not a race issue. I have explained those concerns to her.

ANSWER: The TAR Hot Line cannot advise the seller as to their legal obligations. However, you are permitted to list a house as long as you know that the homeowner is not going to discriminate against a protected class – race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin. The seller can omit specific people or classifications of people as long as it does not fall into one of the aforementioned categories. We would recommend getting these in writing along with the reasons for the omission.

If the seller has questions about what she can do, she should speak with her own legal counsel.

[SOURCE: TAR Legal and Ethics Hot Line Attorneys]


5. TECH TIP: Digital Signatures with TransactionDesk

Buzz Steele, TAR’s Director of Marketing and Research oversees TAR forms and TransactionDesk. Buzz has produced a very useful webcast on how to use digital signatures with TransactionDesk!

To view it, CLICK HERE.


6. A Welcome Testimonial…

Our latest series of E-Class GRI courses is drawing to a close this week, but a new series of E-Class courses begins on July 15! Our instructor-coached E-Class GRI courses are among our most popular educational offerings. One student’s testimonial, sent to his instructor, follows:

*** BEGIN QUOTE ***
Thanks for the latest GRI class. Having obtained my brokers license, I wanted to devote my next education to getting my GRI. I had no idea how much it would benefit me. All of the classes have been structured to make the student go out and find the answers. …It is mine, and my principal broker’s opinion, that the company pay for our agents to take the GRI courses. They are that great. Please pass this on to TAR and the other instructors. Thanks!
*** END QUOTE ***

To learn how E-Class GRI courses work, go to:
http://tnrealtors.com/main/education/e-class_gri_info/

The complete 2010 schedule of Classroom and E-Class GRI Courses is online HERE.

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


7. Rates Hit Another Record Low

The average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage slid 4 basis points, to 4.92 percent. A basis point is one-hundredth of a percentage point. The new rate is the lowest in the nearly 25-year history of the weekly Bankrate survey, eclipsing the previous record set last week.

Meanwhile, this week’s average 15-year fixed-rate — a popular option for refinancing — remained unchanged, at a Bankrate survey record-low 4.34 percent.

Nationally, home prices are now at the same level they were in the Spring of 2003.

[SOURCE: Bankrate.com]


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

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