We Are Ohio REALTORS: Community Service & Philanthropy

Ohio REALTORS is proud to present “Community Service & Philanthropy,” part of its year-long video series celebrating the many attributes REALTORS possess. This video series highlights the important role REALTORS play in boosting our communities and advancing the American Dream.

This ground-breaking series is designed to showcase the unique professionalism, respect and admiration embodied within Ohio’s more than 31,000 real estate professionals. Click the links below to view past episodes of the “We Are Ohio REALTORS” professionalism series:

Tags: We Are Ohio REALTORS Professionalism Series

Coaching Corner: Be afraid?

By “Coach” Marilou Butcher Roth

Today is Friday the 13th! Does the thought of the 13th of the month falling on a Friday give you shivers, or at the very least make you a tad nervous? As is my nature, I got to wondering about what the big deal is about a Friday the 13th.

Honestly, after looking, I am not sure why this date has such a bad reputation. There seem to be references to the last supper, among other interesting reasons, why the 13th falling on a Friday generates fear. There are, in this country alone, countless people who live in fear of  times when Fridays and 13th’s fall on the same day. There are an estimated 17 to 21 million people in the United States that are affected, sometimes paralyzing them with fear.

Come on, many good things have happened on various Friday the 13th’s. What is piquing my interest is how a belief such as this one had its start. Why not Friday the 9th, or Monday the 12th?

Why, is my resounding question…

This is one of those topics that take me to how each of us, at times, react to situations that are outside of ourselves. We can succumb, and be at the mercy of external situations, reacting in ways that create varying degrees of stress for ourselves as well as others. In thinking specifically about Friday the 13th, I know that I am somewhat making light of a fear that may be real for many, and, also reminding you along the way that you, and only you, are in charge of your reaction to any situation (or day) that shows up in your life.

So, whether its Friday the 13th, or a flight that is delayed, your reaction is yours. Hit your internal pause button, take a breath, identify how YOU are feeling. From there you can decide what action you may (or may not) want to take.

Take this day, look it square in its Friday the 13th beady little eyes, and declare that you are in charge of your life! And don’t forget to smile!


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 Ohio REALTORS Board of Directors and past chairman of the organization’s Communications Committee. Feel free to contact Marilou to see if coaching is right for you: Marilou@mbr-group.com


Tags: Coaching Corner, training

‘Lucky’ REALTOR wins $2,000 getaway prize package!

Trina Swan wins grand session giveaway

Trina Swan, right, of Coldwell Banker Ward Real Estate, was the lucky Ohio REALTOR who won the $2,000 vacation getaway gift card at the OAR Annual Convention & Expo. She is shown with Thom Rankin, director of residential lending sales with First Federal Lakewood, who sponsored the prize.


A highlight of the OAR Annual Convention & Expo occurred during the Grand Session when Trina Swan, of Ashland, was announced as the lucky Ohio REALTOR recipient of the $2,000 “Choose Your Own Adventure” getaway package presented by First Federal Lakewood.

Thom Rankin, director of residential lending sales for First Federal Lakewood, pulled Swan’s name out of a drum filled with the names of more than 1,500 Convention attendees!

“I’m so thankful and thrilled to win the grand prize,” said Swan. “I felt like I was in a dream when they called my name. I had just texted last year’s winner and my best friend, Joanne Jacobs, that I was going to win it this year.”

Jacobs and Swan are both associated with Coldwell Banker Ward Real Estate in Ashland.

“When they called my name all I could do was laugh and smile because I couldn’t believe the odds! Two winners from the same agency and the same Board in back-to-back years. And best friends at that!”

Swan, with Coldwell Banker Ward Real Estate, will be receiving a $2,000 gift card that can be applied for a getaway adventure.

Tags: Association news

You’re invited to join the Ohio REALTORS 2018 Leadership Academy!

OARLA logo

Whether you’re interested in leading people or affecting organizational change, the Ohio REALTORS Leadership Academy offers you an opportunity to grow both personally and professionally. Graduates will be equipped with the knowledge, skills and confidence to excel as a leader. Applications are now being accepted for inclusion in the 2018 class!

Ohio REALTORS Leadership Academy participants will work through an extensive training program that combines individual study, group retreats and unique initiatives to enhance leadership skills.

The select members of Leadership Academy class will embark on an intense, nine-month program focused on goal-setting, communication, business relationships and more. Nationally recognized speakers will help you tap into skills that will position you as a leader within the organization, the industry and your community.

Click here for additional information, as well as access the application! Act now, as the deadline to apply is Nov. 10.

Tags: Association news

Negative Inspection Reports: Is ignorance really bliss?

lady justice

By Peg Ritenour, Ohio REALTORS Vice President of Legal Services/Administration

The Ohio REALTORS 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 we spotlight some of the timely questions that are being asked by REALTORS. This one centers on the handling of inspection reports…

Q: I represent a seller who has a pending purchase contract on his property that includes an inspection contingency. He has told me that if the buyer is unsatisfied with the inspection report that he will release the buyer from the contract with “no questions asked.” Moreover, he has instructed me to notify the buyer’s agent not to give me  a copy of the report or to communicate in any way what the issues are with the property. By doing this, the seller believes he won’t be faced with the problem of having to disclose findings that are contained in the inspection report to other potential purchasers. Is this OK? What if the buyer’s agent sends me the report anyway or tells me what defects were included in the report? Will I still need to disclose this information to subsequent buyers if the property goes back on the market?

A: Such instructions from sellers regarding inspection issues are occurring more frequently. And in some cases the listing agent is actually the one recommending this practice to their sellers. The rationale for this approach is that you can’t disclose what you don’t know. And while this may be is true, that doesn’t mean this is a good idea. And in some cases this approach of “no see , no hear, no speak” could actually create a potential risk for both the seller and agent.

So why is this a bad idea? First, by releasing a contract with no questions asked, the seller may be terminating a contract when the buyer has no legitimate basis for not performing. For example, the items that the inspector found may not be defects at all, but merely routine maintenance items. Or, the buyer may merely claim they were dissatisfied with the inspection report, when they really just have a case of “buyer’s remorse.” And there’s no guarantee that the next buyer’s inspection won’t find the same problems and the seller will be faced with the same issue again. This could result in delays in selling the property that could have been avoided by just dealing with the inspection issues with the first buyer.

But more concerning will be the situation where a defect that was found in that original report is not discovered by a subsequent buyer of the property until after closing, resulting in litigation against the seller, the listing brokerage and listing agent. In the course of discovery, it will invariably come out that there was a previous contract on the property that was terminated. Both the seller and listing agent will face questioning by the buyer’s attorney about the reason the first contract was released and the results of any inspection report. And when it is revealed that the listing agent instructed the first buyer not to provide a copy of their inspection report to the seller or to identify the unsatisfactory conditions that were found, the plaintiff’s attorney will have a field day with that listing agent and seller. It won’t take much for the buyer’s  attorney to convince a jury that the seller and the listing agent were trying to avoid disclosure of any defects to the subsequent purchaser. And that may not bode well for either the seller or their agent.

As to the situation in which — despite instructions from the listing agent — the buyer’s agent sends over the inspection report or otherwise shares information about the inspector’s findings, this places the listing agent in a precarious position. That is because the listing agent will now be considered to have knowledge of the information contained in the inspection report. And if that report disclosed any defects in the property, the agent will have a duty to disclose those defects to a subsequent buyer. If the seller instructs the listing agent not to make such a disclosure, the seller should be referred to an attorney for advice on the duty to disclose such information. The agent should also immediately bring this situation to the attention of her broker or manager. If the seller persists in instructing the agent not to disclose any defects discovered by that inspection, the listing broker should consider terminating the listing because following the seller’s instructions could put the listing agent and broker at risk of a license law violation, as well as potential civil liability.

The bottom line is that taking the approach that ignorance is bliss with respect to inspection reports is a strategy fraught with risks for not only the seller, but for the listing agent and the listing brokerage as well. For this reason listing agents should not recommend this approach to their sellers,  and agents should counsel their sellers against this practice and refer them to their legal counsel.


Legal articles provided in the OAR Daily Buzz are intended to provide broad, general information about the law and is not intended to be legal advice. Before applying this information to a specific legal problem, readers are urged to seek advice from an attorney. 

Tags: legal, Legally Speaking

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