The 1-22-13 Newsletter of the Tennessee Association of REALTORS
Editor: Pug Scoville

1. HOT LINE: Using New vs. Old Forms?
2. HOT LINE: Subsequent Buyers Interested in Same Property?
3. HOT LINE ADVISORY: “Prepping” Your Buyer-Clients

4. Conference/Convention Dates To Remember
5. Dates Set for Nationwide Open House
6. December Foreclosures at 6-Year Low
7. Bringing Organization To Facebook
8. Horrors …Foreclosures & the Walking Dead
9. We Love Our 4-Legged Friends in TN

NOTE: If you are reading a hard-copy of this DIGEST, and want to access some of the links cited, simply go to to access the current issue with “live” links!

1. HOT LINE: Using New vs. Old Forms?

QUESTION: Must we use 2013 TAR forms; if there are multiple copies left over from 2012; is there a disadvantage; legal or otherwise to using the 2012 forms?

ANSWER: The TAR forms are disseminated once per year. TAR has a policy that the most current version of the form must be used in order to have the full protection of TAR. Therefore, you should dispose of any blank 2012 forms and start using the 2013 forms.

REMEMBER, you can access a document explaining the changes for 2013, at “Forms on the Fly” in the Members Only section at the TAR website:

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

2. HOT LINE: Subsequent Buyers Interested in Same Property?

QUESTION: I recently worked with buyers as a designated buyer’s agent. The buyers entered into a Purchase and Sale Agreement which is contingent upon them selling their house in another state. Now I have another buyer who wants to see the same house. Will I be violating my designated agency agreement with the first buyers who have the contract if I show this house to another buyer?

ANSWER: We addressed this same situation a while back. We would recommend that you assign the second buyers to a different agent if they want to pursue this home. This will take away the appearance of any impropriety and will avoid the possibility of a conflict of interest – or betrayal of your agency duties to the first buyers – that could result.

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

3. HOT LINE ADVISORY: “Prepping” Your Buyer-Clients

As the market heats up again and, among other things, multiple offers are once again a possibility in many parts of the state, it would be good to refresh your knowledge about what you’re expected to advise your buyers about, when you begin a relationship with them:

Standard of Practice 1-13

When entering into buyer/tenant agreements, REALTORS must advise potential clients of:

  • the REALTOR’s company policies regarding cooperation;
  • the amount of compensation to be paid by the client;
  • the potential for additional or offsetting compensation from other brokers, from the seller or landlord, or from other parties;
  • any potential for the buyer/tenant representative to act as a disclosed dual agent, e.g. listing broker, subagent, landlord’s agent, etc., and
  • the possibility that sellers or sellers’ representatives may not treat the existence, terms, or conditions of offers as confidential unless confidentiality is required by law, regulation, or by any confidentiality agreement between the parties. (Adopted 1/93, Renumbered 1/98, Amended 1/06)

*** END QUOTE ***

The REALTOR Code of Ethics turns 100 this year! Celebrate it!

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

4. 2013 Conference/Convention Dates To Remember

March 25-26: TAR Spring Conference – Cool Springs Marriott, Franklin, TN
You can get more info & register for this one NOW at:

March 27: Realtor Day on the Hill (Legislative Visits in Nashville)

May 13-18: NAR Midyear Meetings & Expo – Washington, DC

Sept. 18-20: TAR Annual Convention – Sandestin Hilton, Destin, FL

Nov. 8-11: NAR Annual Conference & Expo – San Francisco, CA

5. Dates Set for Nationwide Open House

The 2013 REALTOR Nationwide Open House will be held on April 20 and 21. By participating in the largest-ever national open house campaign, you can bring value to your home buyers and sellers.

Your AEs can download promotional materials for this event at:


6. December Foreclosures at 6-Year Low

This is good news!

U.S. foreclosure activity fell to its lowest level in nearly six years in December, reports RealtyTrac. Over the fourth quarter, foreclosure filings were reported on 503,462 properties, down 5 percent from the prior three-month period and down 14 percent from the previous year. There were about 2.3 million foreclosure filings on 1.8 million properties in 2012, marking a 3 percent decline from 2011 and a 36 percent slide from a peak 2.9 million properties in 2010. Florida, Nevada, and Arizona have the top foreclosure rates by state.

For many economists, the contraction in new foreclosures is the latest sign of a turning point for the housing sector. However, RealtyTrac warns that there could be new spikes in foreclosure activity this year. “Although we are comfortably past the peak of the foreclosure problem nationally, 2013 is likely to be book-ended by two discrete jumps in foreclosure activity,” said RealtyTrac’s Daren Blomquist, citing a build-up in foreclosure backlogs.

To read more:


7. Bringing Organization To Facebook

Last week, NAR’s Managing Editor Stacey Moncrieff posted an intriguing report (“Facebook – But Organized”) on a new Internet service, Curaytor, showcased at Inman News’ Real Estate Connect conference.

This new service is meant to address a problem many of us have encountered, when using Facebook: “Have you noticed how quickly your online conversations go into the ether once they’re finished? You might remember that one of your friends had a brilliant idea about how to convert first-time buyers or a witty comment on the latest Fed pronouncement, but retracing that message involves scrolling through old posts – a tedious, time-sucking pursuit.”

To read her report, and one attempt to solve this problem, CLICK HERE.

[SOURCE: NAR’s Speaking of Real Estate Blog]

8. Horrors …Foreclosures & the Walking Dead

Zombie titles! That’s not a misprint; it’s the subject of a recent Reuters report (“The latest foreclosure horror: the zombie title”) on an issue that’s still lurking out there for some homeowners.

Many banks have been walking away from foreclosures the same way that some borrowers have walked away from their mortgages. They have realized that a foreclosure is unlikely to net any amount close to what they are owed; but by simply abandoning a distressed home, they can sell the unpaid debt to collectors; receive insurance, tax, and accounting benefits from documenting the loss; and relieve themselves of the expense and liability of ownership. And because there is no obligation to tell borrowers if they decide not to move forward on a foreclosure, banks typically do not do so. As a result, six years after the U.S. housing bust, thousands of homeowners suddenly are fighting “zombie titles” on homes they thought they had left behind!

Since 2006, 10 million homes have fallen into foreclosure; but of that number, more than 2 million were never concluded. The owners, however unsuspecting, are finding themselves facing wage garnishment; seizure of their tax refunds; damaged credit; bills for such services as graffiti removal, trash pickup, and gutter repairs; and even the threat of jail. “These people have become like indentured serfs, with all of the responsibilities for the properties but none of the rights,” says retired Cleveland-Marshall College of Law professor Kermit Lind.

To read more, CLICK HERE.

[SOURCE: Reuters News Service]

9. We Love Our 4-Legged Friends in TN

It’s official! We’re dog lovers!

Tennessee has one of the highest dog ownership rates in the nation, according to a new report from the American Veterinary Medical Association. Tennessee ranks No. 8 in the U.S., with 44.1 percent of the Volunteer State population owning a pooch.

[SOURCE: Nashville Business Journal]


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