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Stay Safe with NAR's REALTOR® Safety Webinar - Wednesday, September 23rd

Selling Safely: Because It Can Happen to You
September 23, 2020, 1 p.m. — 2 p.m. CT
Instructor: Jen Stanbrough, REALTOR®

REALTORS® face job-related risks every day. Being aware of potential dangers and taking precautions will help you avoid risky situations that can happen to any agent—including you!

In this free REALTOR® Safety webinar from the National Association of REALTORS®, Jen Stanbrough, REALTOR®, shares lessons learned since the loss of her close friend and fellow REALTOR®. She’ll discuss the risks agents and brokers face on the job, how to be aware of situational dangers, prepared to keep yourself safe, and avoid risky situations. Jen will also share best habits, tips, and tools all real estate professionals should include in their safety practices.

Source: National Association of REALTOR® (NAR)

Ultra-competitive housing markets have fueled bidding wars as buyers frantically compete for a limited number of homes for-sale. Real estate professionals are finding themselves helping their home-buying clients navigate multiple offer situations. But they must be careful to avoid misunderstandings and reduce the risk of discrimination in the process, too.

“Real estate professionals can help avoid complaints and fair housing issues while helping both the buyer and seller understand their options,” Deanne Rymarowicz, associate counsel at NAR, says in a new “Window to the Law” video. Check out “Window to the Law: How to Handle Multiple Offers” from NAR by clicking HERE

Rymarowicz highlights three principles for real estate professionals to follow when navigating multiple offer situations:

Be mindful of your legal and ethical duties. Your state likely has laws and regulations regarding time frames for presenting offers and what needs to be disclosed to the other party in a multiple offer situation. Some states, for example, prohibit revealing the terms of a buyer’s offer without the buyer’s consent. The REALTOR® Code of Ethics also speaks to handling multiple offer situations, such as requiring that REALTORS® “protect and promote the interest of their client” in multiple offer situations.

Watch for potential fair housing red flags. “Buyer love letters”—letters, videos, and photos given to the seller from the buyer expressing their desire for a home—could possibly lead to some fair housing violations. “These ‘love letters’ often innocently include personal information that reveals a prohibited basis for discrimination, such as ‘we can see our family celebrating Christmas around the fireplace’ or the ‘wide hallways will accommodate my wheelchair,” Rymarowicz says in the video. Fair housing centers on eliminating discriminating and “love letters” could potentially cause an implicit bias. “Accepting an offer based on anything other than the price, terms, and merits of the offer might violate fair housing law,” Rymarowicz says.

Let the client make the decision. Educate your client about multiple offers and strategies for responses. “You may even offer suggestion and advice based on your knowledge and experience,” Rymarowicz says. But ultimately, “it’s up to the client to decide what offers and counteroffers to negotiate, reject, and ultimately accept.”

Source: REALTOR® Magazine

13 Ways to Step Up Your Defense Against Hackers

Hackers could be using the global pandemic as an opportunity to target real estate as more transactions and communications are conducted remotely.

What’s more, phishing emails may try to use COVID-19 as an excuse for why professionals need to renew login credential or passwords, or hackers may prey on any relaxed online security of the increased numbers of those working from home. You may click HERE to read more.

5 Design Trends Emerging During the Pandemic
COVID-19 likely will have a lasting influence on home styles.

The pandemic has influenced so many areas of our lives these past few months. It’s not surprising that it’s also affecting the design of our homes. Let’s look at some of the biggest home design trends influenced by the pandemic. Please click HERE to learn more.

NAR's Advocacy Work Towards COVID-19 Relief

NAR’s Federal Advocacy team has been working closely with Congress and the Administration to ensure the interests of REALTORS®, their families, consumers, and the entire real estate industry are protected in any federal action in response to COVID-19. You may HERE click to read more.
 Source: REALTOR® Magazine
National Association of REALTORS® (NAR)
Code of Ethics Training Requirement
Current Cycle: Jan 1, 2019 through Dec 31, 2021

NAR's Board of Directors recently approved a change to the Code of Ethics training requirement, extending it from every two years to every three ears. This extends the current cycle deadline from Dec. 31, 2020, to Dec. 31, 2021.

REALTORS® are required to complete ethics training of not less than 2 hours, 30 minutes of instructional time. The training must meet specific learning objectives and criteria established by the National Association of REALTORS®.

Failure to complete the required periodic ethics training shall be considered a violation of a membership duty which will result in suspension of membership for not less than thirty (30) days. On March 1, 2022, the membership of a member who is still suspended as of that date will be automatically terminated.

The deadline is December 31, 2021 to fulfill this requirement.

There are different options available to complete the required ethics training:

1.      SEBAR is offering a couple more Continuing Education Classes this year with Jack Waller of NCI Associates.

2.      The course is available on NAR’s website (www.nar.realtor) for no charge. Go to their website and look for Code of Ethics training.

If you have questions on whether you have fulfilled the Code of Ethics requirement, please feel free to email DBirkner@SEBrealtors.com

You can now check your Code of Ethics training status, choose your preferred COE training format (online or in person), and go directly to the training options available to you with this new training selection tool.
Source: National Association of REALTORS® (NAR)
FAQ: National Flood Insurance Program Expires September 30, 2020

What is the issue?
NFIP’s authority to provide flood insurance is currently scheduled to expire on September 30, 2020. NAR is making every effort to secure a long-term reauthorization of the program. Here are answers to frequently asked questions about what this means for upcoming closings and several proactive steps your clients can take in the interim.

What is the latest?
The House of Representatives has not scheduled a vote on the NFIP Reauthorization Act (HR 3167) that has unanimously passed the Financial Services Committee and is supported by NAR policy. Several other bills have been introduced in the Senate, but no further action has been taken to date. Congressional and White House leaders have attached an NFIP extension to the Continuing Resolution (CR) that keeps the federal government operating until there is agreement on longer term appropriations bills. NAR is urging the longest extension possible while Congress continues working toward a 5-year NFIP reauthorization measure.

What is NAR doing?
  • NAR is in regular communication with Congressional leaders and the White House about the NFIP.NAR is coordinating with a broad coalition of industry groups to support a long-term reauthorization.Flood insurance has been a priority talking point with members of Congress over the past year.Hundreds of members of Congress were contacted about NFIP’s importance to every state.NAR has raised the issue’s profile with multiple calls for action, letters, meetings, talking points, op-eds and state letters.

What happens if there is a lapse?
  • NFIP cannot sell new or renew flood insurance policies after 11:59 pm (Eastern) on September 30, 2020.Existing NFIP policies will remain in effect until their expiration date (i.e., the renewal date plus a 30-day grace period), and claims will continue to be paid as long as FEMA has the funds on hand.Renewal policies are generally issued as long as the application is received prior to a lapse and the premium is received within the 30-day grace period. Other renewals must wait for reauthorization.During a lapse, property buyers can assume existing/renewal policies.
  • Please remind your clients to read the fine print of any insurance policy.The federal requirement to purchase flood insurance is suspended during a lapse, which means it would be up to lenders to decide whether to make loans in special flood hazard areas while NFIP insurance is not available.

Federal Agency Guidelines (suspending flood insurance requirements during an NFIP lapse)

Source: National Association of REALTORS® (NAR)
Don't Forget,
SEBAR's Realtor® Store has you "covered" !!

PPE can be purchased at both SEBAR offices
with curbside pick-up
Vinyl Gloves, Box of 100 for $12.00+tax sizes M & XL.
Face Masks $3.00+tax each.
Shoe Covers, Package of 10 pair for $4.00+tax.

Are you looking for a COVID-19 Checklist to Prepare & Protect you & your clients?
Please click HERE for a printer friendly copy

Source: Southeastern Border Association of REALTORS® (SEBAR)
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We are grateful for your continued support of SEBAR!

Southeastern Border Association of REALTORS®
Shannon Harner, RCE, e-PRO, CEO/Association Executive
Donna Birkner, e-PRO, Downriver Office Manager
Lisa Horvath, e-PRO, MLS Specialist
Jessica Lapp, e-PRO, Membership & Administrative Manager

Monroe County Office
125 Cole Road
Monroe, MI 48162

Downriver Office
Horizon Business Center West
20600 Eureka Road, Suite 510
Taylor, MI 48180

Both Offices are Open Monday - Friday / 8:30 am to 4:30 pm
by appointment only at this time