The 10-7-14 Newsletter of the Tennessee Association of REALTORS
Editor: Pug Scoville


1. Upcoming COURSES & EVENTS
2. The 10 Commandments of Agent Safety
3. REALTOR.COM Under New Ownership
4. What It Takes to Succeed…
5. Managing Your Online Reputation
6. HOT LINE: Requirements To Be a Team?
7. HOT LINE: Backdating a Document?
8. HOT LINE: Extending the Timeframe for Resolving Repairs?
9. Check Your Own CE Hours, Etc.

“I don’t measure a man’s success by how high he climbs, but how high he bounces when he hits bottom.” — George S. Patton

NOTE: If you’re reading this on a mobile device (iPhone, etc.), GO HERE for a mobile-friendly DIGEST.


1. Upcoming COURSES & EVENTS

Oct. 15: GRI 404, Working More Effectively With Sellers (6 hrs. CE) – GNAR Office, Nashville, TN. For more information or to register, go HERE.

Oct. 16: GRI 405, Mastering Forms & Contracts (6 hrs. CE) – GNAR Office, Nashville, TN. For more information or to register, go HERE.

Oct. 17: GRI 406, Tips, Tools, & Technologies For Your Business (6 hrs. CE) – GNAR Office, Nashville, TN. For more information or to register, go HERE.

Oct. 15-17: SAVE $55! If you use our GRI EXPRESS option to enroll in all three of the GRI courses above at the same time, you can save $55! To do so, go HERE.

These are the last three GRI offerings of 2014! Don’t miss out!

Why Should YOU Earn Your GRI? 10 Reasons!

To see upcoming offerings of TREC CORE COURSES, ABR COURSES, etc., – at locations around the state – go to the TAR Calendar at: http://tnrealtors.com/meetings-and-events/calendar-of-events/


2. The 10 Commandments of Agent Safety

The murder of Crye-Leike agent Beverly Carter in Arkansas has mobilized the real estate profession to place new emphasis on safety precautions. In Alabama, for instance, the Birmingham Association of Realtors (BAR) continues to follow the Ten Commandments of Agent Safety, which it issued over twenty-five years ago.

It’s a great list for personal use, but it would ALSO make a good topic for discussion at your next sales or team meeting!

To read more, including an explanation of all 10 Commandments, go HERE.

If you need even MORE motivation to take safety seriously, read THIS STORY by a Jackson TN Realtor who was attacked three years ago.


3. REALTOR.COM Under New Ownership

Move, Inc., that operates REALTOR.COM and other sites, is now being purchased by News Corp (the media conglomerate that owns the Wall Street Journal and MANY other publishing, broadcast, and Internet sites). According to Realtor Magazine, “The $950 million acquisition is expected to be completed by the end of 2014 and is expected to turbo-charge the momentum that’s been taking place at Move since July 2013, when NAR altered its operating agreement with the company to improve its ability to compete.”

NAR’s leadership and Move Inc. officials all feel the acquisition will benefit of NAR’s Realtor members and make REALTOR.COM much more successful. Competition for consumer loyalty has definitely heated up with the merger of Zillow and Trulia.

“This partnership will help shape the future of real estate,” said National Association of Realtors President Steve Brown. “News Corp’s ability to reach and engage consumers, combined with REALTOR.COM’s quality content and the real insights REALTORS provide will transform the current landscape.”

To read more about the Move Inc. acquisition, go HERE.


4. What It Takes To Succeed…

A provocative new article by Bernice Ross just appeared on Inman News. It ought to be required reading for broker-owners and anyone who wants to improve their chances for success!

The article — “‘Lifelong learners’ should be on brokers’ short lists to hire” — asks the question that so many in the industry have been asking for a long time: “What can the real estate industry do to raise the quality of the agents in the business?”

Included in her answers to that question are some interesting facts and figures:

*** BEGIN QUOTE ***
In 2012, the Texas Association of Realtors surveyed 284 broker-owners/managers who identified what they saw as the correlates of new agent success and failure. Broker after broker commented that those who fail were agents who “shortcut training and do the minimum amount to get by rather than constantly learning.”

The same study also showed that new agents who earned their Graduate, Realtor Institute (GRI) designation and actively sought out regular education had significantly higher success rates.
*** END QUOTE ***

The whole article is well worth reading. You may disagree with some of her prescriptions, but the challenges she outlines are real.

To read it in its entirety, go HERE.


5. Managing Your Online Reputation

In past TAR DIGESTS, we have stressed the importance of googling yourself regularly, to see what could have been posted about you on various Internet sites.

But, if you find a negative comment or review, how do you deal with it?

According to a new RISMedia article (“Ask the Expert: Why Is Online-Reputation Management Important?“), the costs of doing nothing can be high:

*** BEGIN QUOTE ***
Word of mouth always influences decision-making, and WPR.org released statistics that show that 92 percent of consumers trust opinions posted online by other consumers, including 70 percent trusting unknown users.

Unfortunately, negative reviews will happen, as no matter how friendly and good at your job you are, you can’t control all aspects of a real estate transaction, and sometimes people will get mad and put the blame on you.
*** END QUOTE ***

To read more, including suggestions on how to deal with bad reviews, go HERE.


6. HOT LINE: Requirements To Be a Team?

QUESTION: Will you please direct me to the requirements to be considered a real estate “team”?

ANSWER: Unfortunately, there are no rules concerning teams, BUT the Tennessee Real Estate Commission has been taking a long, hard look at teams …how they operate and how they present themselves to the public. One area on which they focused is team names. At this point, there are no rules or statutes governing team names except that they cannot be misleading. It is critical that the team name does not confuse the public into thinking that the team is a separate firm. It must be clear that the team is not a firm and that it is part of your current firm.

HOWEVER, TREC has proposed some changes to this rule. On November 5, 2014, there is a public hearing concerning these and other changes.

If TREC’s proposed changes are approved, then the advertising and operating restrictions on teams will be expanded.

To read or download the entire set of proposed rules, you can do so at: http://state.tn.us/sos/rules_filings/08-05-14.pdf

The Rulemaking Hearing is open to all and will be held at 9:30AM on November 5, 2014, in Room 1A at 500 James Robertson Parkway in Nashville.

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


7. HOT LINE: Backdating a Document?

QUESTION: I have a situation and was looking for the best way to approach. During closing proceedings, the “Closing Date/Possession Date Amendment” was completed which states possession will take place on 09/19/2014 at 11:00 AM. Due to circumstances, the amendment was not actually signed until 09/20/2014. Does this void the amendment? And if so, what steps could be taken to address this issue?

ANSWER: Since the document has been signed and the transaction closed, you should leave the paperwork as it is. You should NEVER have a client back date a document in a transaction.

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


8. HOT LINE: Extending the Timeframe for Resolving Repairs?

QUESTION: What form do I use to do an extension on the repair/replacement proposal?

ANSWER: You can use the Amendment to the Agreement (F6) to extend the time period for the Resolution Period. This is a blank form and we would recommend something to the effect of: “The parties agree to extend the Resolution Period until _______ (insert date).

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


9. Check Your Own CE Hours, Etc.

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

To go to the TAR website: http://tnrealtors.com

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/