Code of Ethics Pop Quiz: Code Enforcement

Code of Ethics Pop Quiz 5: Code Enforcement

Question

You receive notice that a professional standards complaint has been filed against you and your attendance is requested for a hearing. You believe that the complaint is completely unreasonable and think the whole hearing will be a waste of time as it will only make things worse between you and the other REALTOR® involved. Do you:

a.) Refuse to go — after all, you don’t think you did anything wrong.

b.) Go to the hearing and answer all the questions you are asked, providing full, honest testimony and elaborating only when necessary.

c.) Go the hearing and provide the committee with everything you know about this case, making sure to point out the opposing REALTOR’S® professional history and current personal troubles.

d.) Go to the hearing but only reply to questions with 1-word answers. That should move things along and maybe if they see you don’t want to be there, they will let you leave early.

 

Answer

If you answered B, then you are correct!

Our Code of Ethics requires that REALTORS® be willing participants in all professional standards proceedings, which includes providing all of the PERTINENT information to the review committee as well as not disrupting the proceedings through bad behavior. Remember, we all agree to follow this code — in good times and in bad. 

 

What does the National Association of REALTORS® Code of Ethics say?

Article 14 states that REALTORS® should always supply the review committee with all relevant information in their possession and shall not obstruct the review proceeding.

If charged with unethical practice or asked to present evidence or to cooperate in any other way, in any professional standards proceeding or investigation, REALTORS® shall place all pertinent facts before the proper tribunals of the Member Board or affiliated institute, society, or council in which membership is held and shall take no action to disrupt or obstruct such processes.”

The idea of being a willing participant in Code of Ethics misconduct hearings is also touched on in the code’s preamble, which states:

“REALTORS® having direct personal knowledge of conduct that may violate the Code of Ethics involving misappropriation of client or customer funds or property, willful discrimination, or fraud resulting in substantial economic harm, bring such matters to the attention of the appropriate Board or Association of REALTORS®.”

If you have information about misconduct (whether yours or someone else’s), you are obligated to bring forward what you know, not to hurt others, but to protect the sanctity of the term REALTOR® and to ensure the best possible service for our clients.

Article 14 recognizes that it can be difficult to file a complaint against another colleague or feel like there might be repercussions against you for your testimony or support of an ethics hearing. With that in mind, standard 14-3 created protections for REALTORS® against retribution for their support of an ethics hearing, which includes protection again threats of action of libel or slander against the person who filed the complaint or against those who spoke at the hearings.

“REALTORS® shall not obstruct the Board’s investigative or professional standards proceedings by instituting or threatening to institute actions for libel, slander or defamation against any party to a professional standards proceeding or their witnesses based on the filing of an arbitration request, an ethics complaint, or testimony given before any tribunal.”

 

Additional Resources on Article 14:

 

Example Hearing:

Part 1: Opening Statements and Case Presentation

Part 2: Hearing Panel Calls a Recess

Part 3: Cross Examinations

Part 4: Closing Statements

Part 5: Hearing Panel in Executive Session

Part 6: BOD Reviews Decision

 

Example Appeal Process:

Part 1: Appeal Hearing

Part 2: Debriefing of the Appeal Hearing

 

John L. Scott Food Truck Rally

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John L. Scott's July 30th Food Truck Rally

Join John L. Scott on July 30th for a Food Truck Rally benefiting St. Luke’s Children’s Hospital! From 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., stop by the John L. Scott Real Estate parking lot to sample from the wide variety of food trucks parked nearby all while giving back to those in need. A percentage of all food purchases will be donated to kids in need at St. Luke’s Children’s Hospital.

Please RSVP to Morgan at 208-323-4000 or morganh@parkpointe.com.

Enrollment Fair for Families Moving into West Ada School District

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West Ada Enrollment Fair

Families moving into West Ada School District have the unique opportunity of enrolling their children in school on July 24 and 25 when the district hosts its second annual summer enrollment fair. These exclusive days offer families face time with instruction and care team providers as well as the ability to take care of registration paperwork for all of their children in one convenient location.

“Whether a family has one or multiple children in our schools, trekking all over our community during summer break, and potentially in the middle of a home move, is not ideal. This event streamlines the enrollment process for our new families and provides staff dedicated time for assisting them as they settle in,” Staci Low, summer enrollment fair organizer and director of career and technical education explained.

Families should dig out a few pieces of paperwork from their moving boxes in preparation for the event, including:

  • Original/official birth certificate or passport
  • Hard copy of immunization record with proof of required immunizations
  • Proof of address (such as current power, gas or city utilities bill, or housing contract)
  • Incoming grades 7-9 bring last report card
  • Incoming grades 10-12 bring an unofficial transcript
  • Copy of IEP/504, if applicable
  • Copy of legal custodial paperwork, if applicable

“Our school nurses, transportation and nutrition teams are available for taking information and answering questions,” Low shared. “Families may also set up their child’s learning and care plans with federal programs and special services staff, and secondary school counselors are available for preparing student schedules.”

More than 800 students enrolled in West Ada School District during the one-day event last summer. School leaders expect similar attendance at this year’s event – now split over two days and in the district’s main office and training center.

The West Ada School District training center is located at 1303 E. Central Dr. Meridian, Idaho 83642. For families new to West Ada unable to attend this enrollment fair, please call your children’s schools for information on summer office hours. Find more information about this event and take care of online forms in advance by visiting www.westada.org/EnrollmentFair.

NEW! Homes and Land of Boise and the Treasure Valley

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New Homes and Land of Boise and the Treasure Valley Magazine

Real Estate Professionals – You now have a new venue for marketing real estate in Boise and the Treasure Valley! Homes & Land of Boise and the Treasure Valley will publish its first issue this August.

Agents will receive all the benefits Homes & Land has to offer, including custom ads, virtual tours, internet exposure on HomesandLand.com and much more. Consumers will be rewarded with a full size, glossy magazine devoted exclusively to real estate and real estate related businesses.

CONTACT US TODAY TO LEARN MORE! Ad space is filling fast.

Kathy Muench, owner/publisher • 208.634.1472 • homesandlandofboise@gmail.com

Teddi Ball, account manager • 208.559.8583 • tball02@msn.com

Code of Ethics Pop Quiz: Advertising Listings

Code of Ethics Pop Quiz 4

Question
You just received your listing photos and they look fantastic! The photographer did a great job with the lighting, angles, and touch-ups and your seller is extremely happy. These photos will really make your listing shine! However, upon closer inspection, you realize that something is not right. In the photo showing the front of the house, there is a beautiful sunset in the sky directly behind the house but you know this isn’t possible because the house faces south. Do you have the photographer correct the mistake or leave it as is?

a.) Have it fixed.

b.) Leave it. Who would notice? It is not an important detail and not worth the delay/cost to change.

c.) Ask the seller what they would like to do; it is their house so they should decide if the photos are acceptable.

 

Answer

If you answered A, then you are correct!

You should never knowingly misrepresent a listing, no matter how small the mistake might seem. While there is nothing wrong with having a photographer make very minor adjustments to an image (such as removing blur or straitening a crooked shot), listing photos should always be a true representation of the property.

 

What does the National Association of REALTORS® Code of Ethics say?
Article 12 states that REALTORS® must always be accurate in their marketing and portrayals of a property. “Realtors® shall be honest and truthful in their real estate communications and shall present a true picture in their advertising, marketing, and other representations.”

Furthermore, standard 12-10 goes on to specifically define what constitutes a misrepresentation of a listing in terms of content, images, and websites:

“Realtors®’ obligation to present a true picture in their advertising and representations to the public includes Internet content, images, and the URLs and domain names they use, and prohibits Realtors® from:

 1)  engaging in deceptive or unauthorized framing of real estate brokerage websites;

 2)  manipulating (e.g., presenting content developed by others) listing and other content in any way that produces a deceptive or misleading result;

3)  deceptively using metatags, keywords or other devices/methods to direct, drive, or divert Internet traffic; or

4)  presenting content developed by others without either attribution or without permission; or

5)  otherwise misleading consumers, including use of misleading images. (Adopted 1/07, Amended 1/18)”

Bottom line – make most of your changes in person and limit what is done to the appearance of the home in photographs.

Additional Resources on Article 12:

REALTOR Magazine: When Does Photoshopping Go Too Far?
REALTOR Magazine: The Worst Offenses in Virtually Staged Photos
REALTOR Magazine: 4 Surefire Tips for Better Listing Photos

 

Professionalism Award Recipients

BRR's Professionalism Award

BRR’s Professionalism Award is an impartial, peer-to-peer based program that recognizes REALTOR® members for their professional and ethical behavior during transactions. BRR REALTOR® members are able to nominate other BRR REALTOR® members for outstanding professionalism anytime throughout the year.

Award Recipients are nominated and approved by their peers through our awards process. Recipients are recognized on our website and on our social media accounts each quarter once they have been vetted by their peers. To learn more about this program or to submit a nomination, visit our Professionalism Award page.

 

Congratulations to our Professionalism Award Recipients!

March 2019:

  • Sydney Burtwell, Silvercreek Realty Group
  • Becky Enrico-Crum, Andy Enrico & Co. 
  • Gennie Fishburn, Boise Premier Real Estate
  • Alicia Ralston, Ralston Group Properties
  • Becky Schiebout, Keller Williams Realty Boise
  • Dawn Templeton, Templeton Real Estate Group

June 2019:

  • Tracy Brault, Silvercreek Realty Group
  • Cristine Klag, ERA West Wind Real Estate
  • Phil Mount, Amherst Madison

Hubble Homes New Design Showroom

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Hubble Homes

Hubble Homes has been proudly building homes of exceptional quality, craftsmanship, and value throughout the Treasure Valley for over 23 years. Our energy-efficient homes are now ENERGY STAR® Certified & HERS rated and come with annual energy savings! Plus, all of our homes include a 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty®, so your buyers have piece of mind.

Hubble Homes is excited to announce the opening of our new Design Showroom.  Located centrally in Meridian off of Eagle Road and I-84, the Design Showroom is open some evenings and Saturdays too.   Help your Buyers build the new home they have always wanted at one of our Treasure Valley Communities! Bring them out to our new Design Showroom soon and help them discover stunning options and upgrades to personalize their new home.  No appointment necessary, browsing is encouraged.  We are looking forward to helping them personalize their Dream Home!

Hubble Home's new design showroom

Hubble Homes Design Showroom
701 S. Allen St. #102
Meridian, ID 83642
(208) 695-2023


Hours:

Monday, Friday & Saturday: 9 am to 6 pm
Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday: 10 am to 7 pm
Closed on Sunday

To learn more or schedule a tour visit one of our Model Home Sales Centers & New Home Specialists at:

  • North Ada Sales Team @ White’s Acres Model Home: 86 W. Yosemite St. Meridian, ID 83646
  • South Ada Sales Team @ Southern Ridge Model Home: 3664 E. Warm Creek Ave Nampa, ID 83686
  • North Canyon Sales Team @ Windsor Creek East Model Home: 12609 Trinidad Street Caldwell, ID 83607
  • South Canyon Sales Team @ Eagle Stream Model Home: 15461 N. Bonelli Ave Nampa, ID 83651

Model Home Sales Centers Open: Monday – Saturday, Noon to 6 pm; Sunday, 1 pm to 4 pm

Visit www. hubblehomes.com/communities to learn more.

Our newest model home opens in Southern Ridge on Friday, June 14th.  Southern Ridge is located just east of Southside Boulevard and Locust Lane.

Bear Printing’s Real Estate Marketing

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Bear Printing for Real Estate Marketing

 

From traditional Flyers and Postcards to specialty products like our Flyer Minis, Home Brochures, and our Flagship product, the PermaFlyer, we offer a Full Suite of Marketing Materials to help you sell both yourself and your listings.

Want to Learn More?

Schedule a Live Training or a Webinar for your office today! Visit www.bearprinting.com for more information.


Bear Printing now offers Online Design & Print Platforms

You Sell Real Estate, We Design Cool Stuff.

Why spend so much time creating Marketing Materials when you should be out Selling Homes? Put our Platform to work for you.

Get your hands dirty if you want, we’ll let you. Or you can integrate your MLS data to go Full Auto and our Automated Tools will handle it all for you.

 

How to Appeal your Property Tax Assessment

NOTE: All property tax appeals must be submitted to the County Board of Equalizers no later than the fourth Monday in June — this year, the deadline is Monday, June 24, 2019.

It is that time of year when homeowners receive an assessment notice from the county which determines the amount owned through property taxes. If you disagree with the assessed value noted, there is a process for appeals. Here’s a step-by-step guide on what to do:

1.) Determine if the information about your home is correct

The first step in an appeals process is to determine if the information about your home on the assessment is correct. Did they get the number of bedrooms and bathrooms right? What about the size of the lot? Documenting characteristics that you can prove are incorrect will make your appeal stronger.

To locate the characteristics of your property according to the county assessor, visit your county’s online parcel search tool — Ada County, Elmore County, and Gem County.

2.) Work with a REALTOR® to find comparable properties

The next step in the appeals process is to find comparable properties. We suggest working with a REALTOR®, as they can help you identify homes that are similar in size and amenities. Once you have a few properties in mind, look them up on the County’s website to see their assessed value. If there is a significant difference, you can use this information as part of your appeal.

Keep in mind, if the homes identified are currently for sale or have recently sold, those prices are considered the market values, which could differ from the assessed values used to determine property tax. More on those differences here.

3.) Contact your appraiser

Once you have the information you need to make your case, call or email your appraiser, whose information should be on your assessment notice. This will put you in contact with the person who assessed your home allowing you to share your research with them directly.

4.) File an appeal with the County Board of Equalization

If you are still unsatisfied with your assessment after speaking with the appraiser, you can file a formal appeal with the County Board of Equalization. This group will determine if your complaint is valid and make the necessary changes to your assessment if deemed appropriate.

All property tax appeals must be submitted to the County Board of Equalizers no later than the fourth Monday in June — this year, the deadline is Monday, June 24, 2019.

For more information on how to file your appeal, please review the steps on the back of your assessment notice, or, visit the County Assessors’ websites and others for more information:

Code of Ethics Pop Quiz: Availability of Listings

Code of Ethics Pop Quiz 3

Question
Your buyer calls to ask you for access to a home they recently bought, to measure the windows for blinds. Although you haven’t officially closed on the property, the deal is in progress. You know the property is vacant and you happen to be nearby so you could stop by to let them in.  Do you:

a.) Give them access to the home, staying with them the entire time.

b.) Offer to give them access but leave early to make your next showing, telling them to lock up when they are done.

c.) Tell them they cannot enter the property unless we first get permission from the listing agent or seller.


Answer

If you answered C, you are correct!

As a REALTORS®, you are responsible for anyone you allow into a property, and you should never allow access without the seller’s consent — even if you’re under contract. In this instance, since you have not yet closed on this property, the home is still considered to be listed, which further prevents you from providing access to the property outside of the agreement you made with the seller through their listing agent.


What does the National Association of REALTORS® Code of Ethics say?
Standard of Practice 3-9 states that you may not provide or promote access to a property outside of the agreement you have with the owner or listing agent:

“REALTORS® shall not provide access to listed property on terms other than those established by the owner or the listing broker.”


Resources for Duty to Clients and Customers

NAR Code of Ethics

Pathways to Professionalism – Respect for Property

Code of Ethics Article 3 [Start at 6:26]

Pathways to Professionalism – Respect for Property