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October 2018 CEO Report

DavidFreitagWe are putting the finishing touches on this year. Our Legislative Committee had a hectic election season, with candidate interviews and disbursements of RPAC dollars to our endorsed candidates. I am happy to report that all of the Candidates we supported financially were successful. The lone loss was in the Ottawa County commissioner race which the candidate we chose did not want any financial support. I want to thank the members who helped with this campaign, and we need to make sure that we stay in contact with our elected officials. The past month was very busy with meetings, the NAR convention, working on Core Standards requirements, and checking on Code of Ethics class requirements for our members. I will give a brief outline of some of the critical takeaways from the meetings.

2018 NAR Convention and 2018 NAR Legal Seminar combined meetings

• Annual Antitrust Compliance Program

2018 is the final year that NAR is required to hold this part of the program. The reason for the Consent Decree resulted from NAR not having VOW Policy and Rules in place.

1. Requires all MLSs to adopt the NAR VOW Policy and Rules
2. Requires NAR to deny insurance coverage to any MLS that does not comply
3. Also requires NAR to report compliance to the DOJ quarterly

This expires on November 18th and NAR has no plans to change the current VOW policy.

• Coming Soon and Pocket Listings
1. Proper Uses for Coming Soon

Article 12
REALTORS® shall be honest and truthful in their real estate communications and shall present a true picture in their advertising, marketing, and other representations.

Standard of Practice 12-8

The obligation to present a true picture in representations to the public includes information presented, provided, or displayed on REALTORS®’ websites. REALTORS® shall use reasonable efforts to ensure that information on their websites is current. When it becomes apparent that information on a REALTOR®’s website is no longer current or accurate, REALTORS® shall promptly take corrective action.

2. Improper Uses for Coming Soon

 Never Lists on the MLS
 Shown only to a select few
 Without Seller permission or consent
 No signed listing contract
 Accept bids or offers before the advertised time
 No logical or reasonable reason
 Only appropriate if it’s not misused
3. Pocket Listing is Counterintuitive
 Most experts agree that sellers are best served by MLS listing exposure
 MLSs facilitate transactions by creating a consolidated source of accurate property information and function best when information is complete
 Pocket listings can compromise information accuracy and undermine cooperation
 MLSs ensure maximum exposure and provide the best chance for the highest offer

4. Legitimate use of Pocket Listings

 Seller wants privacy
 Seller wants a quick transaction
 Seller wants to limit the number of people through the property
 Seller wants to test the price

5. Legal Risks

 Breach of Agent’s duties
 State Law
 Fair Housing
 Antitrust

Cybersecurity Panel

A panel discussion was held on cybercrime and the new tools that criminals are now employing. It was suggested that everyone review their insurance policy in regards to this increasing threat. NAR provides coverage to Associations and MLSs through their insurance plan.
• Core Standards:

1. A change for the 5th upcoming cycle will be the requirement to upload documentation regarding the annual Association audit, review or compilation

2. A recommendation was made to NAR to form a workgroup to review the member experience and admin procedures regarding the Ethics Training requirement. Despite a suggestion that this current Ethics Training cycle be extended, no extension was given. Cycle ends on December 31.

• MLS:

MLS Policy Statement 7.73 in the Handbook will be amended to reflect the update to Standards of Practice 1-7

“Where a cooperating broker is not present during the presentation of the offer, the cooperating broker can request in writing, and the listing broker must provide written affirmation stating that the offer has been submitted to the seller or written notification that the seller has waived the obligation to have the offer presented”.

• Mediation Workgroup:

a. The Work Group recommended the creation of a “Pathway to Professionalism” document that outlines professional courtesies for Association staff and volunteer leaders, similar to the one already adopted for members.

b. The Work Group continues working on revising policy violation resolution procedures to require associations to mediate disputes between associations before filing a formal complaint with NAR.

• Commitment To Excellence – C2EX

This new designation-like program was rolled out at the Boston Convention. Here is the link to all the information on the program and also the website where members can sign up and log in to start the program. The C2EX program is free to members.

On November 5th the Huron County Health Department requested that we have a meeting with them to discuss proposed changes to the Septic System rules as they relate to real estate transfers. This meeting was a follow-up to the meetings that we have had this year with the Department. Eric Cherry, Sanitarian outlined two proposed plans to our members in attendance. Both proposals offered are triggered upon property transfer. The only difference was option A would require all Huron County residents with a sewage treatment system registered for the mandatory Operation and Maintenance program. Option B would be a slower program that would be triggered by either property transfer, self-entry, or by risk priority. The main change is the depth and scope of the inspections. The General Health District Board will review these options and if approved will be effective January 1st, 2019. We will continue to monitor the changes and work with Eric to hold meetings to explain the rules.

On November 7th the Community service committee met to discuss the planning for the Reverse Raffle. The event has been scheduled for March 13, 2019, at our building. The proceeds will be for the Firelands Association of REALTORS Foundation.

I am happy to report that we have submitted our 2018 Core Standards Compliance requirements for certification and we should have an answer soon if we need further information sent to NAR.

Respectfully submitted,

David W Freitag RCE, CEO

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