The 8-20-13 Newsletter of the Tennessee Association of REALTORS
Editor: Pug Scoville


1. Upcoming COURSES & EVENTS
2. HOT LINE: Working with an Unrepresented Buyer?
3. HOT LINE: Problems Found in a “Late” Inspection?
4. HOT LINE: Contract for VA Transactions?
5. Committee Requests Deadline!
6. Half of All Homes Now Purchased With Cash
7. Another Scam To Watch Out For!
8. Password Privacy
9. USEFUL LINKS

NOTE: The TAR DIGEST will not be published next week, but will return with the Sept. 3 Edition!


1. Upcoming COURSES & EVENTS

Aug. 22 – Sept. 11: GRI 402, Staying in Business & Out of Court (8 hrs. CE) – an E-Class distance-learning course. For more info or to register: https://www.123signup.com/event?id=bzmcz

Aug. 30: DEADLINE for TAR Committee Requests! 2014 could be YOUR year to serve and make a difference in the future of your state association! To complete an easy online application for a 2014 committee appointment, log into the Members Only area of tnrealtors.com, and go to: http://tnrealtors.com/members-only/committee-request-application/

Save money on CE in August! Online CE Course Promotion for August: Enroll in any online CE Shop courses during the month of August and save 20%! Enter AUG20 at checkout to receive your discount. Enroll at: http://tarnet.theceshop.com/

GRI Courses are starting up again in August and September! To see the full year’s schedule, go to: http://tnrealtors.com/education/gri/


2. HOT LINE: Working with an Unrepresented Buyer?

QUESTION: I have a listing and I’ve been working with an unrepresented buyer who wants to make an offer. Can the buyer remain totally unrepresented?

ANSWER: Yes, a buyer can be totally unrepresented in a transaction. As the listing agent, you can remain the agent for the seller while the buyer is unrepresented. HOWEVER, the buyer should understand what this means. It must be fully disclosed with buyer’s signed recognition of this before they submit an offer. We would recommend that you use form F1b, Working with a Real Estate Professional and F1c, Confirmation of Agency status with the buyer.

Under the Broker’s Act, confirmation of agency is required to be done orally, and then in writing if the other side is not represented by an agent.

If you will look at 62-13-403(a,b) in the license law, you will notice that you have to have a signed receipt from the party to whom disclosure of agency status was provided if that party is unrepresented.

Another option would be to have another agent work with the buyer if the buyer doe want representation. Finally, if you have the permission of the seller (in writing), you could default to a facilitator for both in the transaction. Above all, consult with your Managing Broker about your firm’s Office Policy on Agency.

IMPORTANT TO NOTE: TREC has advised that, if you default to facilitator in this situation (even with the seller’s prior permission to do so), you should go back to the seller at this time and make sure that the seller understands that you NOW no longer represent him/her, confirming this new disclosure in writing.

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


3. HOT LINE: Problems Found in a “Late” Inspection?

QUESTION: If a buyer has a contract and the inspection is supposed to be done under the contract within X number of days, but the inspection is not done until 3 or 4 days after X, can the buyer still walk because of something they found in the inspection?

ANSWER: Please note that the TAR Legal Hot Line cannot provide interpretations of executed contracts. However, we can provide you with the Forms Committee’s intent concerning several aspects of the inspection portion of the Purchase and Sale Agreement.

The contract provides an inspection period within it. The form states that “In the event Buyer fails to timely make such inspections and respond within said timeframe as described herein, the Buyer shall have forfeited any rights provided under this Paragraph 8, and in such case shall accept the Property in its current condition, normal wear and tear excepted.” (Lines 235-238).

This means that the buyer would waive any rights to terminate or any rights to repair if they do not act on a timely basis, per the contract. AND, if the parties agree to extend the inspection period, they must do so in writing.

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


4. HOT LINE: Contract for VA Transactions?

QUESTION: Is there a particular contract specifically for VA transactions?

ANSWER: The TAR Purchase and Sale Agreement may be used on VA-funded transactions. However, you will need to use form F47, the FHA/VA Loan Addendum form as well. Please bear in mind that the termite letter is a non-allowable fee and must be paid by the seller. This is addressed in form F47.

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


5. Committee Requests Deadline!

Due to staff travel, the TAR DIGEST will not be published next week. That means that this is our LAST reminder about the August 30 DEADLINE for TAR Committee Requests!

If you would like to serve on a TAR Committee in 2014, log into the Members Only area of tnrealtors.com, and go to: http://tnrealtors.com/members-only/committee-request-application/


6. Half of All Homes Now Purchased With Cash

The Wall Street Journal carried this somewhat surprising news last week….

More than 50 percent of all homes sold last year and so far this year were paid for in cash, according to Goldman Sachs Group economists who analyzed property sale and mortgage origination data. The volume of cash deals is up more than 30 percentage points from seven years ago, before the housing market collapsed, write the report’s authors. They estimate that about 44 cents of every $1 in home sales is being financed today, down from the pre-crisis norm of 67 cents. The Goldman analysts also say that while lower home sales are partially to blame for a slump in purchase-loan origination volumes to $500 billion in the past two years from about $1.5 trillion in 2005, higher levels of cash financing are also a key reason.

To read more: http://blogs.wsj.com/developments/2013/08/15/report-half-of-all-homes-are-being-purchased-with-cash/


7. Another Scam To Watch Out For!

This is one that a well-informed agent, real estate company, and seller-client can thwart!

*** BEGIN QUOTE ***
Two women in Houston posing as a real estate agent and a home buyer conned sellers into leaving their homes for showings so the duo could rob their houses, according to police. One of the schemers was being held in police custody Tuesday, and the other was still at large.

In one incident, the owners of a listed home were notified by their real estate agency that a buyer wanted to see their house right away, police said. The owners left the home immediately without putting their jewelry away, and when they returned, the jewelry was gone. The real estate agency told police that the woman posing as an agent used a real estate license and number. However, she did not have a super key so the home owners had to let her and the buyer inside.

Police believe the women may be involved in similar crimes reported in the area. Another home owner reported credit cards being stolen from the home during a showing, and soon after, $30,000 was charged to the cards.
*** END QUOTE ***

To read more: http://realtormag.realtor.org/daily-news/2013/08/15/cops-duo-pose-agent-buyer-rob-homes


8. Password Privacy

There is so much in the news about invasions of privacy, government and corporate snooping and data collection, etc., that one is tempted to “go off the grid” entirely and retreat to a mountain cabin somewhere with no Internet, phone, or other connection to civilization.

But it’s hard to sell real estate that way!

One of the most common ways in which privacy is violated occurs when one of our Internet accounts is accessed via a stolen or easily “cracked” password!

Password security means keeping different passwords – and passwords not easily discovered – for different sites. Fortunately, there are some useful apps out there to help you do this pretty easily.

Your editor has used one of these for a while, and I can recommend it: pwSafe – an app that you can use on an iPhone, iPad, or Mac. To learn more about it, go to: http://app77.com/pwSafe/

Another password manager was reviewed very positively by Real Trends last week: LastPass – available for a variety of devices and platforms. To learn more about it, go to: https://lastpass.com

BOTH of the above options are VERY affordable. Above all, use SOMETHING reliable before one of your accounts or websites is hacked!


9. USEFUL LINKS

To access current and past TAR DIGESTS: http://www.tardigest.com

Follow TAR on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/tnaor

TAR’s LinkedIn page: http://www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=852077&trk=hb_side_g

TAR’s page on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Nashville-TN/Tennessee-Association-of-RealtorsR/15041383689

To ask a TAR Legal and Ethics Hot Line question: http://tnrealtors.com/services-support/legal-ethics-hotline/

For CE classroom courses around the state, go to: http://tnrealtors.com/education/realtor-courses/

For online CE courses, go to: http://tnrealtors.com/education/online-courses/

Tennessee Real Estate Commission: http://tn.gov/regboards/trec/

To check your CE credits on file with TREC, go to: http://verify.tn.gov