The winners from the last Broker Moment (in order of time response): Rychen Jones, Kenya Arnett, David Rooker, Traci Crockett, Tiffany Crawford, Amy Gibbons, Sherilyn Hopper, Jessica Denardo, Brent Craig, Lisa Gonzalez, Adam Peart, Tracey Chhour, Greg Keele, Jill Saddler, Debbie Newman, Heather Roxburgh, and Tyler Demars. Your gift will be sent to you soon! If you have no clue what they won then read the last broker moment!
Question: What is the difference between notice and acceptance?
Don’t confuse section 23 Acceptance with section 18 Notices, there is a difference!
Required items for all Notices per section 18.
1. In Writing
3. Received by the other party
Required for Acceptance per section 23
2. Communicated to the other party’s agent that acceptance has been signed
Now, why do I point out these differences? Once your client has signed the acceptance and you have communicated that to the other side, YOU ARE UNDER CONTRACT! You would be required to send over the accepted documents in a timely fashion. You couldn’t say that your client has signed and later say that it wasn’t as this would be a violation of state law and code of ethics. The best thing to do is still provide the signed copy at the same time as the communication! If you communicate acceptance, you must send over the paperwork.
Question: If the contract talks only about written notice, would it also need to be signed?
I have recently seen a few errors when giving notice to the other party. Specifically on the “Flexible Settlement Deadline” and the Seller’s Notice to Buyer of Accepted Offer to remove a time clause. You could have an email explaining when the settlement deadline will be or that you have accepted a backup offer but if your email does not contain everything required for an official notice (in writing, signed, and received by the other party) then that communication IS NOT notice! Please remember that all notices need to be in writing, signed, and received by the other party.
Question: I represent two different buyers and both want to put an offer in on the same home. Is this a unique form of limited agency and if so, how should I proceed?
Normally limited agency is between the Seller and Buyer, however, you have a fiduciary duty of confidentiality and full disclosure to every client. If you have shown a home and written an offer on a home and another one of your clients wants to see that home then the best way to proceed would be to disclose to the second Buyer that you’ve already shown that home to another client that did write an offer. Let them know you can have another agent in the office show that home to them or you can show it but if they decide they want to write an offer that you won’t be able to help them with the price or the terms of the offer due to the conflicting fiduciary duties. If Buyer #2 still wants you to write the offer for them you would also need the permission of Buyer #1.
Another route you could go would be to show them the home and if they want to write an offer have another agent in the office help them determine what to offer and how to put the offer together. I think It is best to disclose that you’ve written an offer with Buyer #1 to the Buyer #2 upfront before even previewing the property and ask them if they want you or another agent in the brokerage to show them the home!
Broker Tip: It is important that when Earnest Money is being released by the brokerage or a title company that a time deadline is not included in the contract.
Don’t put something like this in a contract: “Earnest Money of $3000 to be released to Seller upon acceptance of this addendum and is to be non-refundable and delivered to Seller no later than (date).” Instead, Do put something like this in the contract: “Earnest Money of $3000 to be released to Seller upon acceptance of this addendum and is to be non-refundable. This is a written instruction that Buyer and Seller both authorize Buyer’s Brokerage to release the earnest money with no additional signatures or addenda required.”
What I don’t like about the Don’t scenario is you are allowing the contract to be voidable if the Seller doesn’t get the funds by a certain date. Anytime an Earnest Money is being released, I must personally review it. When there are scenarios like this it’s almost always the same day as when the check is due. The state gives me 4 days to deposit earnest money which is easier than releasing it. Please don’t make contracts voidable by having deadlines contingent on another party, it’s just sloppy. The “Do” example still protects your client and guarantees a release of the funds. I’m not always going to release Earnest Money until I have verified everything.
Broker Tip: Get to Know the forms!
There’s a new time clause addendum and a new Subject to Sale of Buyer’s residence addendum. Please make sure you review those and use the most current versions for the forms. These two new forms are better than the previous versions. If you know of any form that doesn’t exist but should then let me know and I’ll be sure to get that to the UAR forms committee! The best recommendation for a form that currently doesn’t exist will get the prize this time.
Broker Tip: Just a reminder, the Wire Fraud Alert Disclosure is required for every transaction, even new construction. As an agent, you NEVER send the wire instructions. That should be directly from the title company or the Principal Broker. You can let your client know who they should call to verify the validity of the wire instructions. This is a good time to remind you that the brokerage does not accept wires unless approved by the Broker. Our company policy does not allow us to send outgoing wires.
Broker Tip: Make sure the earnest money is delivered where the contract says it will be. In the last division newsletter, an agent was fined $1000 for telling his client to deposit the earnest money at the title company rather than the brokerage. Unfortunately, no addendum was included that authorized the title company to hold the earnest money. We know by default the earnest money goes to the Buyer’s Brokerage. Please make sure you are properly advising your clients.
Broker Tip: Always disclose that you are a licensed agent.
Standard of Practice 16-10 says “REALTORS®, acting as buyer or tenant representatives or brokers, shall disclose that relationship to the seller/landlord’s representative or broker at first contact and shall provide written confirmation of that disclosure to the seller/landlord’s representative or broker not later than execution of a purchase agreement or lease. (Amended 1/04)”
Broker Tip: Please make sure your clients have an understanding of what is acceptable while in a home before showing them homes and when possible please have children not viewing homes. Enough said!
Broker Tip: Did you know the brokerage has access to all four MLS’s in Utah?
That’s right. If you want access to the Park City MLS, Iron County MLS, or St. George MLS then you have the ability since the brokerage cooperates with each of those MLS’s.
Final Broker Tip: Be a little better
Stop sharing on Facebook (even the private agent only groups) about the builders, lenders, and title companies you don’t like. Don’t post practices you don’t like about the competition. This is discussed in many areas but primarily in Article 15 of the code of ethics.
My suggestion is to write what you want to post and email it to me and ONLY me. This will allow you to let go of the anger you may have for the other party and if you still feel like you want to do more then we will discuss it the following day. Go ahead and keep your personal list of agents, companies, lenders, etc. that you don’t trust but please don’t openly voice your opinions or these other companies and individuals. I’d encourage you to read Article 15 and 16 of the Code of Ethics.
Keep up the great work,