Coaching Corner: Are you a handyman special?

By “Coach” Marilou Butcher Roth

Thursday afternoon I was making my way home from my last, (yes I really mean it) trip for a Christmas gift. As traffic tends to move rather slowly by the mall this time of year I had the opportunity to stare for quite some time at a sign reading “Handyman Special — Call ________.” It started my brain going in typical Marilou fashion which of course you get to be the recipient of!

Do you view yourself as a handyman special? Someone who requires a bit of TLC to become the person you want to be? Or perhaps you think you need a total gut, complete with a new exterior paint job? If so, how productive do you find those thoughts to be? How easy is it to move forward when you are pulling the tin cans of self judgement and possibly even dislike behind you? Pretty much impossible. What would your life be like if you gave up those thoughts that you (or someone you love) are an improvement project?

Yes, that is exactly what I would love to see you do! Cut loose those old thoughts that if you were ________ you would be more acceptable, more lovable, more successful! Shift your internal focus to what you can authentically like, or hopefully even love, about yourself. Are you willing to love your imperfections? We all have them I promise! Can you find it in your heart to see yourself in a more favorable light, because I guarantee you that finding all of the “bad” traits about yourself is like digging a hole and climbing in.

This Christmas give yourself the present of self-acceptance. Imagine a beautifully wrapped gift under the tree awaiting you, filled with all of your own wonderful characteristics coming into your awareness as if they were toy soldiers marching one by one out of the box to show you how sensational you are! OK, perhaps this is a bit much for you, so take what you can from this blog and if nothing else, find something to appreciate about yourself each day. Remember that whatever you put your attention on gets bigger, so choose wisely!

Wishing you and your family a happy, healthy and outrageously abundant holiday! Marilou


Marilou Butcher Roth is the owner of The MBR Group, a coaching and training company working primarily with REALTORS who have a desire to work and live from a more inspired place. She is also the Broker/Owner of Group REALTORS in Cincinnati.

Marilou is a member of the OAR Executive Committee and immediate past chairman of the organization’s Communications Committee. Feel free to contact Marilou to see if coaching is right for you:


Tags: Coaching Corner, training

NAR offers a review of year-end Congressional action

By John DiBiase, Communications Director, NAR Government Affairs

capital buildingTuesday night (Dec. 16, 2014) the United States Senate adjourned sine die at 11:25 p.m. This marks the formal end of the 113th Congress meaning any legislation not enacted must be reintroduced in the 114th Congress which will begin on Jan. 6, 2015.

The end of the “Lame Duck” session had mixed results for REALTORS. Shockingly, the United States Senate failed to renew the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA). This alarming failure to act before adjournment could stall commercial real estate development around the country. The Senate missed an opportunity to approve a six year reauthorization of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act that passed the U.S House of Representatives with overwhelming bipartisan support. The bill died when Senators were unable to reach a unanimous consent agreement which would have allowed the bill to proceed.

Despite this temporary set-back, REALTORS will work closely with Congress in 2015 to swiftly reenact TRIA and provide much needed certainty to the commercial market.

Congress did enact a series of tax extensions. The “Mortgage Forgiveness Tax Relief Act” is included in the package approved by the U.S. House and Senate and is now headed to the President’s desk for signature into law. The effort to include the “Mortgage Forgiveness Tax Relief Act” was bipartisan and bicameral.

In addition to the mortgage forgiveness provisions that will help distressed homeowners there are also provisions affecting commercial property investors who made transactions during 2014. The legislation also includes one-year extensions of the 15-year depreciation schedule for leasehold improvements and the deduction for improvements to energy efficient commercial buildings.

Tags: politics

The People Revolution: Passion powers profit

Real estate visionary Chris Smith tells Ohio’s REALTORS that the key to success is “waking up every day and doing what you love.” This clip — taken from Smith’s keynote at the OAR Annual Convention & EXPO — highlights the concept that success is not just attaining financial wealth, it’s really about discovering your own emotional wealth. Click here to see other episodes of Smith’s “peoplework” principles.

Tags: People Revolution

Ohio Market Watch: Buyers slightly increase preference for condos over single family

By Greg Stitz, OAR Director of Research

Ohio REALTORS were recently asked to report what change, if any, they have seen in buyers’ preferences for condos over single family homes in the past year. According to the Ohio Association of REALTORS’ December housing confidence survey, 28 percent of respondents have seen an increase in buyers preferring condos. This is a 7 percent increase over last year when the same question was asked. Conversely, 6 percent fewer respondents in 2014 (16 percent) than in 2013 (22 percent) reported a decrease in buyers’ preferring condos. The majority of respondents in 2014 (56 percent) and 2013 (57 percent) observed no change in preference.


Survey results are based on responses to a monthly survey, designed to capture the effects of the existing economic conditions and trends on the real estate industry, sent to a pool of 1,500 OAR participants. Click here to participate in future OAR Housing Confidence Surveys.

Tags: Ohio Market Watch, research

Legally speaking: What should I do if they won’t sign?

By Lorie Garland, OAR Vice President of Legal Services

The OAR Legal Assistance Hotline receives an array of real estate-related legal questions — including license law issues, disclosure, contract law, ethics and commission problems, among others. In an effort to help you work within the law, our “Legally Speaking” series spotlights some of the timely questions that are being asked by REALTORS. This one involves the Agency Disclosure Statement and Waiver of Duties…  

Q: My agent wrote an offer on a property listed with another brokerage. The listing is a minimum services listing with the listing agent authorizing negotiations directly with the seller. My agent completed the Agency Disclosure Statement indicating he and our brokerage represented the buyer and the listing agent and listing brokerage represented the seller. The offer was accepted, however, the buyer refused to sign the Agency Disclosure Statement prepared by my agent. Instead the seller returned an Agency Disclosure Statement listing only my agent and brokerage and that we represented the buyer. Although the listing is a minimum services listing, doesn’t the listing agent and brokerage still represent the seller? If so, what do I do about the Agency Disclosure Statement?

A: Yes. The listing agent and brokerage represents the seller. However, with a minimum services listing, the seller has agreed that some of the duties owed the client are not required to be performed. The state form required to be used for this type of listing is the Waiver of Duties Statement. The duties sellers may waive are:

  • Seeking a purchase offer at a price and with terms acceptable to the seller
  • Accepting delivery of and presenting any purchase offer to the seller in a timely manner, even if the property is subject to a contract of sale, lease, or letter of intent to lease
  • Answering the seller’s questions and providing information to the client regarding any offers or counteroffers
  • Assisting the seller in developing, communicating, and presenting offers or counteroffers
  • Answering the seller’s questions regarding the steps the client must take to fulfill the terms of any contract (within the scope of knowledge required for real estate licensure)

The form requires the seller to initial the duties waived and for the seller and listing agent to sign the form.

So what should your agent do if the accepted offer is returned with a new and inaccurate Agency Disclosure Statement? The license law provides the procedure to follow when a consumer refuses to sign the Agency Disclosure Statement. Your agent should note on the form submitted with the offer to whom and when the form was presented, the fact that the seller refused to sign and why the seller refused to sign. Your agent should also present the seller prepared Agency Disclosure Statement to the buyer. If the buyer refuses to sign, the same procedure applies to document that refusal. The agency disclosure forms are required to be maintained along with the other transaction documents for a period of three years.

Tags: legal, Legally Speaking

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