Patti Chapell's blog

Are Open Houses a Waste of Time? Part 1

It depends.  Many times, one agent will put the word out that he/she needs another agent to do an open house on one of that agent’s listings.  The agent doing the open house puts up some signs, shows up and waits for people to come through the door.  Maybe the listing agent put an ad in the paper.  Maybe not.  If you want to waste your time, this is a great way to do it.

What's the Story on CE with Flood Insurance Content?

If you have an active real estate license in Virginia (This includes referral agents.), beginning January 1, 2016, you must take continuing education that includes flood insurance information that is approved by the Virginia Real Estate Board.  The flood information is not a separate course but is an addition to the Legal Updates & Emerging Trends required course.  Therefore, this flood insurance content needs to be a part of a 1 hour stand alone course on Legal Updates & Emerging Trends, an 8 hour mandatory packet, a 16 hour packet, and for brokers, a 24 hour packet.

Hoarding Now Protected Under Virginia Fair Housing Law

Hoarding is now classified by the Diagnostic Manual of Mental Disabilities (DSM-5) as a disability.  Reasonable accommodations are required to allow residents with disabilities equal use and enjoyment of their dwelling.  In the case of hoarding, this could be allowing the resident to remain in the dwelling longer than usual to address the lease violation.  The accommodation needed may include time or assistance to clean up the clutter enough to be in compliance with the lease.  It does not mean the hoarder is allowed to violate safety and health rules indef

Moving Seniors with Compassion

Last year, my mom was living in an apartment in an independent living facility, where she had lived for 10 years. Although the building was primarily for independent living, there was one floor that offered assisted living. About half way through the year, she and her children agreed that mom needed to move to assisted living. We were introduced to a company that would aid us in the move. These people were not movers; they actually worked with movers. They came into the old apartment, took pictures and measurements, worked with a moving company to pack and move everything.

Sexual Orientation a New NAR Protected Class

Federal Fair Housing laws prohibit discrimination in housing based on race, color, sex, religion, national origin, disability, and familial status.  Many states have chosen to add to that list.  In addition to all federally protected classes, Virginia prohibits discrimination in housing based on elderliness.  Localities can further add to the list of protected classes.  The National Association of Realtors® has added an additional protected class to the 2011 Code of Ethics® – sexual orientation.

It’s Not Just About the Service

The service that we give our clients is important, but letting our clients know what we do for them is just, if not more important. How many times have you heard the complaint that “My agent didn’t do anything?” Even when an agent gives his/her potential client a signed list of all activities that agent will do, the list is usually 10 – 20 items, covering only the most obvious things. This list doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface. Give these potential buyers and sellers a list of EVERYTHING you can think of.

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