The 10-29-13 Newsletter of the Tennessee Association of REALTORS
Editor: Pug Scoville


1. Upcoming COURSES & EVENTS
2. Rates Drop To Lowest Level in Four Months
3. YOUR Impact on the Economy!
4. Most Are Open to Buying a Haunted House
5. Haunted Real Estate Stories
6. HOT LINE: Disclosure of a Suicide?
7. HOT LINE: Assigning a Contract?
8. HOT LINE: An Exclusive Agency Listing Agreement?
9. USEFUL LINKS


1. Upcoming COURSES & EVENTS

Our last two GRI Courses of 2013 are coming up:

Nov. 14 – Dec. 4: GRI 406, Tips, Tools & Technologies (8 hrs. CE) – An E-Class distance-learning course. For more information or to register: https://www.123signup.com/event?id=bzmpd

Dec. 6: GRI 406, Tips, Tools, & Technologies (8 hrs. CE) – KAAR Office, Knoxville. For more information or to register: https://www.123signup.com/event?id=dxycf

To see upcoming offerings of TREC CORE COURSES, ABR COURSES, etc., – at locations around the state – go to the TAR Course calendar at: http://tnrealtors.com/education/realtor-courses/


2. Rates Drop To Lowest Level in Four Months

Freddie Mac released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey, showing average fixed mortgage rates hitting their lowest levels since this summer amid market speculation that the Federal Reserve will not alter its bond buying purchases this year. 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 4.13 percent with an average 0.8 point for the week ending October 24, 2013, down from the prior week when it averaged 4.28 percent. 15-year FRM averaged 3.24 percent with an average 0.6 point, down from the previous week when it averaged 3.33 percent.


3. YOUR Impact on the Economy!

If you’ve ever wondered about the real economic impact of a home purchase – beyond the dollars that change hands when a home is built and sold, or resold as an existing property – a new Consumer Expenditure Survey data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics should interest you!

The survey compares spending behavior among three groups of single-family detached homeowners: buyers of new homes, resale buyers, and non-moving owners. The results indicated that during the first two years after closing, home buyers tend to spend substantially more on appliances, furnishings, and property alterations than non-moving owners. However, these buyers tend to be larger households with children and, on average, wealthier.

Looking at spending patterns of new-home buyers and identical households that stay put, the differences are greatest with regards to furnishings expenditures. A typical new-home buyer is estimated to spend over $3,000 more on furnishings than an identical household that remains in place in that first year. The elevated level of spending continues into the second year of ownership as new-home buyers invest an additional $2,000 on average over their typical budget on furnishings. Buyers of existing homes also spend significantly more than homeowners who remain in place; however, the lion’s share of their expenditures go toward remodeling projects.

To read more: http://rismedia.com/2013-10-19/the-ripple-effect-of-home-buying/


4. Most Are Open to Buying a Haunted House

More than half of home buyers are open to buying a haunted house, according to realtor.com’s 2013 Haunted Housing Report. Also, 35 percent of the nearly 1,400 people who took the survey say they have lived in a haunted home!

There are some other INTERESTING findings in this report! To read the summary, go to: http://www.realtor.com/news/survey-most-people-open-to-buying-a-haunted-house/


5. Haunted Real Estate Stories

In keeping with this week’s theme, Bernice Ross posted an interesting article on Inman News (“Haunted real estate: Realtor recalls frightening experiences as a newbie”). In it, she recounts her true experiences with two properties early in her career. If you like scary stories, you should probably take a couple of minutes and read about her experiences …especially about the second property in her article! To do so, go to: http://www.inman.com/2013/10/28/haunted-real-estate-realtor-recalls-frightening-experiences-as-a-newbie/


6. HOT LINE: Disclosure of a Suicide?

QUESTION: Does a suicide committed in a property have to be disclosed?

ANSWER: Halloween week is, we suppose, the perfect time to respond to a question like this!

You do NOT have to disclose that a person committed murder or suicide in the home. Pursuant to Tenn. Code Ann. 66-5-207:

*** BEGIN QUOTE ***
Notwithstanding any of the provisions of this part, or any other statute or regulation, no cause of action shall arise against an owner or a real estate licensee for failure to disclose that an occupant of the subject real property, whether or not such real property is subject to this part, was afflicted with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or other disease which has been determined by medical evidence to be highly unlikely to be transmitted through the occupancy of a dwelling place, or that the real property was the site of: (1) An act or occurrence which had no effect on the physical structure of the real property, its physical environment or the improvements located thereon; or (2) A homicide, felony or suicide.
*** END QUOTE ***

HOWEVER, if someone asks, you must be honest!

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


7. HOT LINE: Assigning a Contract?

QUESTION: One of my agents is acting as a buyer, and plans to assign the contract. What forms do we need to use and have signed by the buyer/assignor, seller and assignee? If the agent receives money in the transaction, should it be treated as a commission?

ANSWER: TAR does not have a form for the assignment of contracts. This is a legal transaction and as such, we would strongly recommend that, if this is what the buyer wishes to do, he have an attorney draft an assignment agreement that will provide him/her as much legal protection as possible. HOWEVER, it is important to understand that the buyer is still obligated on the sale in the event that the assignee does not close. The seller really does not need any additional paperwork at this point. Obviously, he will need to be notified at closing as to who will be closing, whether it be the buyer or his assignee closing.

If the buyer is receiving payment as a commission on this, then it would still be treated as a commission and would be paid through the firm. However, if the buyer is receiving payment from buyer #2 for assigning the contract, it would likely not be considered a commission and could be paid to the agent directly.

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


8. HOT LINE: An Exclusive Agency Listing Agreement?

QUESTION: I need to find an exclusive agency listing agreement. Where do I look?

ANSWER: You can use an Exclusive Right To Sell Listing Agreement and then add the following language to Special Stipulations to convert it into an Exclusive Agency Agreement:

*** BEGIN QUOTE ***
SELLER RESERVES THE RIGHT TO SELL – EXCLUSIVE AGENCY AGREEMENT.
The Seller hereby reserves the right to sell Property and hereby converts this Agreement into an Exclusive Agency Listing Agreement. If a Buyer is procured for the Property through the sole efforts of Seller acting alone, then Seller is not required to pay Broker the compensation contained herein. However, in the event that the Buyer is obtained through any efforts of Broker (included but not limited to any Broker advertising, listing in the MLS, or traffic created by any signage put in place by Broker), then the aforementioned compensation is due to Broker at closing.
*** END QUOTE ***

This language is available in a list of pre-approved language for Special Stipulations which is contained in form F33.

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


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