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Roanoke Valley REALTOR®


 Roanoke Valley  Associathion of REALTORS



You are receiving this online newsletter as a benefit of being a member of the Roanoke Valley Association of REALTORS®.
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Member Type|Count



REALTOR®      1,108


Offices              126           

Affiliate             128


Click here to see which RVAR members have switched firms, gone inactive, or joined recently. 

Agency Law Changes July 1st -- RVAR Forms Will Be Ready      

On July 1st, Virginia's real estate agency law changes. There are three notable changes to the Law:
  1. Brokerage agreements must be in writing. These brokerage agreements must, at a minimum, provide a list of services the agent will deliver, provide a schedule of fees including when payable and a definite termination date.
  2. Disclosures when acting as a dual agent must be clear and comprehensive.
  3. All residential real estate licensees, renewing their license between 7/1/2012 and 6/30/2014, must take a 3-hour course on these changes. (Those who certify to DPOR that they engage only in commercial transactions are exempt from taking this course.)
RVAR's Standard Forms Committee and the Board of Directors have worked hard to ensure that all the forms you will need to comply as of July 1st will be ready in RVAR's zipForm® library.

Four existing RVAR forms have been revised to comply with the new law. Click on the links below to see what has been changed in each form.

Two new RVAR forms have been created. Click on the links below to review the content of each form.

When you already represent a client in a transaction, you will need to use this form to disclose your representation to someone who is NOT your client AND is NOT the client of another agent.

This new non-exclusive form meets the statutory requirements and ethical standards of a written Brokerage Agreement without the many obligations of an exclusive buyer agreement.

Note: The Agency Disclosure form will no longer be available as of July 1st, since it does not comply with the new law. The information contained in the form is now available at
 www.RVAR.com/buyers for use by members and the public.

Countdown to Supra Exchange       

Supra and RVAR are finalizing all the details for next month's lockbox exchange. An email will go out in a few weeks with all the details. But here's an overview of what you can expect:    


      Supra will conduct the lockbox exchange during the week of July 23rd.

  • July 23-25    Holiday Inn Tanglewood, Roanoke 10AM-7PM
  • July 26         Westlake Golf Club, Hardy 10AM-7PM

  • Members are encouraged to go to the location most convenient for them.  If you are not available that week, you may exchange your lockboxes the following week at the RVAR office.
  • All MLS members with an active Supra key (meaning currently paid in full with Supra) may exchange their lockboxes (both grey and blue) on a 1 for 1 basis for new BlueTooth lockboxes.
  • To ensure a smooth exchange, please make sure your lockboxes are registered with Supra through the RVAR office.
  • MLS members may retain their current Display Key OR may opt for access via their smart phone. Members may change their key option at the lockbox exchange or any time thereafter. Click here for a list of smart phones that may be used as your lockbox key.
  • No money will be owed at the exchange. Supra will mail its next invoice in August. It will be for a 6-month period (September - March.) Thereafter, Supra will mail out an annual invoice each March.

Leadership Openings on 2013 RVAR BOD

RVAR's Board of Directors has announced the following leadership openings for 2013: President-elect, Vice President and 4 Director positions. The only stipulation for applicants is that there can be no more than two REALTORS® from the same firm serving on the Board at any given time. NOTE: The Immediate Past President is exempt from this requirement.

August 1st is the deadline for receipt of written applications. The Nominating Committee will request a personal interview with each candidate in early August and recommend a slate of Officers and Directors to the Board of Directors. The membership will be notified of this slate in early September. Petition candidates may also file during September. Should there be any contested positions, an election by ballot will be held in the fall.

Continuing their service on the 2013 Board will be: President Betty Kingery (Mountain to Lake Realty); Immediate President Melissa Morgan (Renaissance Properties); and Directors Bryan Musselwhite (Poe & Cronk); Jeff Snyder (The Real Estate Group) and Richard Wimberley (RE/MAX All Points).

Any questions about leadership responsibilities or the nominations process should be addressed to Nominating Chairman Richard Limroth or Chief Executive Officer Laura Benjamin.

Christmas in July by President Melissa Morgan

When we were kids, letters to Santa were an annual ritual.  Our letters were short and sweet, simply asking Santa for what we wanted.  However, a schoolmate's family took the ritual one big step further.  Her parents made her negotiate with Santa.  For every new toy requested, she was required to donate at least 2 of her toys to charity.  Her chosen toys for donation were disclosed in writing in Santa's letter, so that enforcement would not be an issue after Christmas.  Smart parents.  Glad they never talked to mine.   I apologize to your kids in advance if this has given you any ideas for tweaking your own holiday rituals.

Santa and his volunteer elves at RVAR have a Christmas in July party of sorts planned for you the week of July 23-your Supra lockbox exchange.  Immediate Past President
Joe Sutliff and his lockbox workgroup including Past Presidents Richard Limroth and Tom Wilson plus Billy Kingery, Lori Shultz-Moore, Patty Meyers, Daniel Brown, Brian Smith, Laura Benjamin, Dick Davis and me have worked tenaciously to negotiate the sweetest deal we've ever had with Supra.  No hideous 2-for-1 like my schoolmate's Christmas contract.  Every RVAR member, whether naughty or nice, will get a brand new Bluetooth Supra I-box in exchange for one tired old blue or gray box.  The new Supra I-box is smarter and the key holder is bigger.  You'll be able to open the new boxes with your smart phone, or continue to use your Display Key.  The anticipated increase in smart phone key users will mean you'll often get your showing data instantaneously.  Knowledge is power, and we need all the extra power we can get these days. 

Santa and the RVAR elves also know that your time is money, so we've made sure the exchange process will be as quick and painless as possible.  For your convenience, we'll have exchange dates in Roanoke and at Smith Mountain Lake.  You'll soon receive all the details on Christmas in July, a.k.a. the lockbox exchange.  When you see Santa Joe Sutliff and the other lockbox workgroup elves this summer, please thank them for all their hard work on your behalf.  Enjoy your new toys!

New MLS Features   

Effective July 10th, the MLS will include a new, optional field: Owner/Seller Financing Available Y/N. The addition of this field will make it simple to search for those listings where owner/seller financing is available.

Also effective July 10th, the MLS will require properties to be off the market for 90 days before the Cumulative Days on Market (CDOM) calculation is reset to zero. CDOM currently resets after a property is off the market for 30 days.

Safety Tips for Sellers  

Have you advised your Sellers on how best to prepare their homes for viewings? Review these tips with your Sellers to help keep them, their property and their belongings safe.

Required Ethics Training    

NAR requires all REALTORS® to complete 3 hours of Code of Ethics training every four years. The current four-year cycle ends December 31, 2012. RVAR is offering four Code of Ethics training classes to help members meet NAR's deadline. RVAR's class, taught by John Dickinson, will not only meet NAR's requirement but will also provide 3 hours of CE credit for license renewal.

Click here to register or for more information about the first class on August 16th (2-5PM at the RVAR office). Additional classes are scheduled: September 6th (9AM-Noon at Westlake), October 15 (9AM-Noon at RVAR) and November 15 (2-5PM at RVAR).

Upcoming Education Offerings

Lender Panel: Navigating the Mortgage Maze: This July 19th class (10-11:30AM at the RVAR Office) will focus on everything from the perfect loan file to what NOT to put in a contract. Presenters will be: Paula Brown (BB&T Mortgage); Tom Floyd (Valley Team Mortgage); and Gail Perry (American National Bank.) This session is FREE! Click here for more information or to register.

Who Owns It? Title Issues That Delay Settlement: This August 23rd class (10AM-12:30PM at the RVAR Office) will cover everything from the basics of what title insurance covers to ownership issues that might delay a transaction. Thanks to the sponsorship of Performance Title & Settlement, this course is FREE and qualifies for 2 hours of CE credit (legal update) 2 hours PL credit (residential elective.) Click here for more information or to register. Class sponsor and catered lunch provided by Performance Title & Settlement, Inc.

REALTOR® Conventions in the Fall 

VAR's Annual Convention, the REal Show, returns to the Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront hotel, October 5th & 6th. Keynote speaker Bill Rancic, Donald Trump's original Apprentice, will share his views on how to succeed in business and in life. Education tracks include: client connections, market matters, risk management and biz tech. Enjoy networking opportunities plus an Expo featuring key real estate vendors. Plus Mary Dykstra of MKB, REALTORS® will be installed as VAR's 2013 President in one of the final programs Saturday afternoon, October 6th. Earlybird registration is available through August 13, 2012.

NAR's Annual Convention will be held in Orlando, Florida, November 9th-12th. Choose from more than 100 education sessions during the four days, plus the largest real estate trade show in the world, featuring more than 400 exhibitors with the latest innovations and products. Plenty of networking opportunities plus a celebrity concert featuring Glenn Frey and Joe Walsh. PLUS REALTOR® Night Out at Universal's Islands of Adventure. Earlybird registration available through August 15th.

VDOT Sign Alert

Thanks to VAR for the heads up. VDOT, which controls the roadways and rights of way in area Counties, has announced plans to initiate aggressive enforcement of the existing law which allows removal of signs from the VDOT rights of way throughout the Commonwealth. VDOT staff specifically mentioned REALTOR® and "weight loss" signs. VDOT plans to focus its removal efforts during week days.

Breaking National News

Flood Insurance Program Extended Through July: The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) was set to expire on May 31st. On May 30th, Congress passed a 60-day extension. Passage required a compromise.  Congress agreed to a provision that creates a 4-year phase-out of rate subsidies on non-primary residences. The phase-out provision means that insurance rates on some non-primary residences could increase by 25% per year until premiums reach the full (actuarial) cost. While the first step increase is currently scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2012, the rest of the increases would not be fully phased-in for a minimum of 4 years.  

Although NAR strongly objected to mixing provisions of the larger reform bill with the temporary extension, the elimination of the rate subsidies was a necessary compromise in the face of overwhelming bipartisan support in both the House and Senate for the provision. Flood
insurance is required by law to obtain a mortgage in more than 21,000 communities nationwide. A lapse would have affected 1,300 transactions a day or nearly 40,000 a month, a potentially devastating blow to the market recovery. NAR will continue to lobby for a 5-year reauthorization and reform bill.


QRM Delayed: Expectations for a 2012-debut of Qualitative Residential Mortgages (QRM) has been delayed at least until 2013. The Dodd-Frank Act requires lenders that securitize mortgage loans to retain 5% of the credit risk unless the mortgage is a QRM. Regulators have proposed that a QRM require at least a 20% down payment and a tight standard of limiting mortgage payments to 28% of gross income.


NAR is encouraging federal regulators to honor congressional intent by re-defining the QRM exemption to include a wide variety of traditionally safe, well underwritten and documented products that have historically demonstrated low risks of default, including loans with down payments of less than 20% (with mortgage insurance.) NAR agrees that loans with risky features such as teaser rates, negative amortization and balloon payments should not qualify as QRM loans. Defining QRM is important because it will determine the types of mortgage that will generally be available to future borrowers. As proposed, borrowers with less than 20% down would have to choose between higher fees and rates, up to 3 percentage points more, or a lengthy delay while they save for the necessary down payment.  


Squelching the Tax Rumors:  The only 'breaking news' is that the rumors just won't stop regarding a real estate tax contained within the federal health care legislation. It is true that a new tax was slipped into the health care legislation at the last minute. The proceeds from this new tax - estimated to be $210 billion over 10 years - will be dedicated to the Medicare Trust Fund. 


Here's the truth according to NAR. Beginning January 1, 2013, a new 3.8% tax on some investment income will take place. This tax WILL NOT be imposed on all real estate transactions, a common misconception. Rather, when the legislation takes effect, a 3.8% tax may be imposed on some (but not all) income from interest, dividends, rents (less expenses) and capital gains (less capital losses). The tax will affect only individuals with an adjusted gross income (AGI) above $200,000 and couples filing a joint return with more than $250,000 AGI. 


Check out NAR's brochure containing examples of how the new tax may be imposed as well as NAR's FAQs on this topic.  

Our RVAR Family

 In Sympathy

RVAR expresses sympathy to Barbara Brooks of RE/MAX Lakefront upon the recent death of her father.

RVAR also expresses sympathy to friends and colleagues of long time REALTOR®
Steve Mullins of REALSTAR, REALTORS® who passed away recently.


RVAR salutes Steve Hoover of MKB, REALTORS® who was recently appointed by Governor McDonnell to serve a four year term on the Virginia Real Estate Board.

Congratulations to Mike Sustek of Weichert, REALTORS® Bridges & Co. for winning the $100 cash prize at RVAR's recent Membership Meeting.

Congratulations to RVAR's Community Service Committee for raising $1,800 for the American Cancer Society by participating in Roanoke's Relay for Life earlier this month. Thanks to all who contributed!

Let RVAR know if you have news to share.

Upcoming Events       


July 4th

 RVAR Closed for Holiday 

July 19th 

 Lender Panel 

July 23rd 

 Supra Lockbox Exchange Begins 

August 9th 

 New Member Orientation 

August 16th 

 Code of Ethics Training 

August 23rd 

 Who Owns It? Title Class 

Roanoke Valley Association of REALTORS® 
 www.RVAR.com | (540) 772-0526 | Email