Pocket Listings Pique Interest
I read with interest the article by Robert J. Bailey (“Off-MLS is Off-Base,”
November/December 2013, page 47) on the effect of pocket listings
on the MLS data. Why wouldn’t it work for MLSs to offer the benefit of
entering pocket listings in the MLS and “hiding” them? They could be
made visible to a variety of audiences in the MLS [agents in their own
company, for example] or not visible in the MLS at all while they were
active. Once the property closes, the information could be available for
reporting purposes such as CMAs but not directed to the public’s viewing.
Cheryl E. Olsberg, NP Dodge Real Estate, Omaha, Neb.
worth noting that last year Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said that an influx of
legal immigration could boost housing
demand long term.
Busting a Health Care Myth
FROM “SPEAKING OF REAL ESTATE” A false
Facebook post is making the rounds
claiming that if you don’t pay the penalty
under the Affordable Care Act for not
buying health insurance, the IRS can file a
lien against your home. The law requires
individuals who don’t meet one of the
law’s exemptions to buy an insurance
plan that meets minimum requirements
or face a penalty of $95 or 1 percent of
their income. However, the law explicitly
prohibits the IRS from filing liens against
homes to collect health-insurance
penalties. Instead, the IRS will offset tax
refunds to obtain the money owed.
REALTOR® MONKEY RESPONDS: With a law
that is so complex and convoluted in the
way it’s written, there are bound to be
rumors and problems in spades. I guess
we’ll see how things play out with it.
“Off-MLS is Off-Base” by Robert Bailey
is seriously flawed because the writer
bases his argument on a false premise.
He writes, “Here’s why this matters. Real
estate professionals owe a fiduciary duty
to the seller.” That’s a blanket statement
that is true in some parts of the country
but untrue in others, such as Florida and
Colorado, where transaction brokerage
is the default and under which there is no
fiduciary duty to either the seller or buyer.
Mr. Bailey needs to start over if he wants
to prove his case.
Larry Lowenthal, Century 21–
Rose Realty West, Cooper City, Fla.
In the article “An Unverified Life” (Last
Word, November/December 2013, page
48), Jose Antonio Vargas poses the ques-
tion, “How do you define an American?”
The answer is, you begin by obeying the
law. The rule of law is what sets us apart
from much of the world where chaos
reigns. My disappointment in the maga-
zine for taking the politically correct route
with this article is profound. If Vargas
wants to quit hiding in our society like a
common criminal and actually complete
his immigration here, I’d be the first to
Dennis Erickson, ABR, RE/MAX
Realty Group, Bozeman, Mont.
Thank you for speaking to my colleagues
and peers. I am a REALTOR® with a mixed
[legal] status family. You spoke to our
hearts and liberated us.
Cyndi, REALTOR®, Michigan (Full identifying
details were withheld at member’s request.)
Editor’s Note: The publication of
Jose Antonio Vargas’ interview in
REALTOR® Magazine (“An Unverified
Life,” November/December 2013) was
intended to offer the perspective of one
high-profile immigration reform advocate
amid the ongoing Congressional debate
over a potential pathway to citizenship
for millions of undocumented residents.
Vargas’ comments do not constitute
an endorsement by the magazine or
NAR. As the association continues to
monitor Congressional proposals, it is
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