Real Estate Show Tina Grimes April Updates

Real Estate Show Tina Grimes April Updates 

Full Video Transcript Below

[00:00:00] Alice Lema: Well, good morning, Southern Oregon. And welcome back to the real estate show. I'm Alice Lema. I'm a broker here in beautiful Southern Oregon with John L. Scott real estate your host of the real estate show. So happy to have you back. We have a great episode this week. We're interviewing Tina Grimes, who is the CEO of our local rogue valley association of realtors.

[00:00:22] Tina comes on the show every so often and brings us up to speed. What's happening with agents. What's happening with real estate in general and the trends and some of the laws that are affecting our real estate in Oregon in general, and how that affects us here in Southern Oregon.

[00:00:39] So super excited to be talking to Tina Grimes today, the CEO of. Association of realtors also known as our RVAR. If you hear somebody say RVAR that's what they're talking about. It's not a cute animal. It's the rogue valley association of realtors. So speaking of what's going on locally before we get to our interview with Tina, I want to just remind everybody that we're in big big transition, especially here in Southern Oregon with our housing market.

[00:01:06] And it has a lot to do with the interest rates ,for our poor buyers out there when also the sellers are in a little bit of shock and overwhelmed as the rates are now, in some cases going up over 5%. 5.1 to 5.8, depending on what you're buying, how strong you are of a buyer, how strong your finances are.

[00:01:27] And if you are an investor, hold onto your seat investors, six, six and a half already. Here we are end of April, investors are looking at over 6% for their mortgages and some to boot. The feds are talking about another rate increase in the next couple of months. So that is raising havoc, but people are still buying and selling. We just have to do it differently.

[00:01:52] So don't want anybody to panic. We always get through it, right. Especially here in Southern Oregon. We're a pretty sturdy bunch, but. If you were thinking of buying a house. Don't think about it anymore. Just do it, get it done because what if the rates don't go down? That's the big question now.

[00:02:09] And if you're selling, some of the prices are having to come down because the buyers just cannot write that check anymore. They just can't have their monthly payment be as high as it was even five weeks ago. So a lot going on Tina Grimes, the CEO of rogue valley association realtors is going to talk to us a little bit about that.

[00:02:28] It's also fair housing month. April is fair housing month. So we're going to talk about that. And as you know, Oregon, Is at the forefront of being progressive and having changes that nobody else does in the United States. So she'll bring us up to speed on some of what's going on in our state real estate organization and how it's affecting us locally.

[00:02:48] So please stand by. We'll be right back after a quick word from our sponsors.

[00:02:53] Well, good morning, everybody. Welcome back to the real estate show. I'm Alice Lema. I'm a broker at John L. Scott real estate here in beautiful Southern Oregon and today. So excited to have Tina Grimes back. She's the CEO of our local rogue valley association of realtors.

[00:03:09] And we just love when Tina comes on every so often to kind of bring us up to speed about what's going on. Welcome back. And thanks for doing this..

[00:03:20] Tina Grimes: Thanks for having me.

[00:03:21] Alice Lema: So here we are in early April is kind of the beginning of the second quarter. We had kind of a lot happened in the first quarter.

[00:03:32] Tina Grimes: Yeah. Then a lot happening for a few quarters, actually.

[00:03:36] Alice Lema: Yes. So true. So true. Yeah. And I know April is a fair housing month and we're going to talk a lot about that. Are there any recaps you want to mention about. January February, March before we launch into what's going on with April.

[00:03:51] Tina Grimes: No, I just, I, you know, I think we're living in some kind of unprecedented times right now, as far as.

[00:03:57] Well in a lot of areas, but specifically in the real estate market, just because, you know, typically things kind of calm down in the winter and we did not see that at all this last winter and April would normally be the time when you guys are gearing up for your busy season, but I don't know that it's going to get any busier than it already.

[00:04:16] So it'll be interesting to see how this plays out over the next few months with the interest rates going up and an inflation happening. So we'll see.

[00:04:24] Alice Lema: Well, and since you brought that up is it possible that we had the spring rush in the winter and that spring will slow down? Is that even on the realm of possibilities?

[00:04:36] Tina Grimes: Well, it, yeah, it's a possibility. I I've heard a couple of economists say that they don't think we'll see the impact of the raising interest rates for a few months, because in fact, we might even see more of a frenzy just because buyers are now going to get out there to try and get it done before the interest rates go up anymore.

[00:04:55] So we'll see. I, and I've heard that I've heard other economists say the exact opposite that they think the raising interest rates are going to absolutely slow things down. So right now, right away. So would, you know, I think it's just tough to know. Cause we've never really seen this before.

[00:05:08] Alice Lema: Well, and they don't even know .

[00:05:10] Tina Grimes: They're just making an educated guess.

[00:05:12] Alice Lema: Yeah, my goodness. Wow. It's it's quite a rollercoaster out there. So let's talk about April and fair housing. This is so exciting and there's a lot going on in fair housing. The rules are changing.

[00:05:25] Tina Grimes: Oh yeah. Yeah. So historically, April is fair housing month because the fair housing act of 1968 was passed in April.

[00:05:34] So it's, that's what April became fair housing month. You know, it's been in place now for 54 years. And a lot of progress has been made, but there's still a lot of progress to go. I mean, you know, we've come a long way. We've got a ways to go still to, and I think recognizing that and just continuing to make strides is the important thing.

[00:05:51] Alice Lema: So well in 55 years ago, actually, it wasn't that long. No, it really wasn't you know, 1850. Yeah.

[00:06:01] Tina Grimes: No, it really is. Yeah. You know, we like to think that we're way beyond some of those issues, but we're really not that far past them in, in some areas of the country, they're still not past them at all.

[00:06:11] You know, there's still major issues in some areas of the country. So It's it's a tough one. I mean, even in Oregon, if you look back at Oregon's history, I'm sad to say it was illegal for a black person to spend the night in our state clear up until the 1920s. Wow. That wasn't changed until the twenties.

[00:06:31] It's only been a hundred years since that was even changed. So, you know, it's amazing to think of some of these archaic laws and policies that are on the books. And the culture that those created that they don't, the culture doesn't get just get changed just because a law got passed culture takes time to change, unfortunately.

[00:06:51] Alice Lema: Yes. Generation sometimes. Yeah. So let's talk about what fair housing is exactly. So that people know what we're talking about.

[00:06:59] Tina Grimes: So fair housing is well, the fair housing act itself, To get a little geeky here for a moment with legal stuff. It eliminated the practice of red lining, which red lining was when areas were drawn on maps for ethnicities to be designated to certain areas of, of the municipality. So, and then you know, amazingly enough, it was actually in the original code of ethics for realtors that you could not, it was it was unethical to sell a property to someone of an ethnicity other than the other than what was red lined for that area.

[00:07:36] And that, and red lining was a practice that came out of the federal housing department. So, I mean, it was a it was a national thing. I mean, it was the culture. And I'm not saying that's right. It definitely wasn't right. But it was the culture. So in 1968, the fair housing act was passed, which eliminated the practice of redlining.

[00:07:53] And meant that you could no longer steer someone to a certain neighborhood just because of their ethnicity. So for realtors, what that means is, you know, and it's in your code of ethics, it's in state law, it's in federal law, it's everywhere now that, you know, you have to just be objective and unbiased and you have to show people the properties that fit their criteria, period. End of sentence. No matter what they look like, no matter. You know who their spouse is, no matter what there, you just have to not discriminate.

[00:08:23] Alice Lema: Level playing field always best. So in the 1960s, when this was passed what the realtors you were saying that the, the realtor creed from the beginning had that I already had that in it for the, yeah.

[00:08:40] Tina Grimes: Back in 1913, when the code of ethics was originally adopted, that was so early on. I know. And, and, NAR you know and they are, has come out and said, and actually apologized. They've made public apology in 1968. They were originally opposed to the fair housing act. They thought it was gonna hurt. They thought it was going to hurt consumers, hurt the housing market.

[00:08:58] And they were originally opposed to it, but it was just. Just in a few short years thereafter, they realized the error of their ways. And now are one of the most staunch supporters of the fair housing act and practices. yeah.

[00:09:13] Alice Lema: And it's taught over and over and over again, for those of us that are in the business.

[00:09:17] Tina Grimes: Yep. One of the most fascinating things that's come out in the last couple of years As far as training for it goes is the implicit bias training, which, you know, most of us don't use. We all have implicit biases. It doesn't matter who you are or what you're, because those biases are ingrained in you from how you were raised.

[00:09:35] So to recognize that you have those and to start realizing what those are to help you. Then not that they're bad, not that you, you know, but just recognize that they're there so that when you're meeting people and having conversations with people, you can recognize what is your tendency and then, and, and overcome that.

[00:09:54] So it's, that's some fascinating training. It's a lot of psychological More than we have time to get into today.

[00:10:01] Alice Lema: And I think that it's great for the public to hear that because I don't think they realize how much training we go through so that we can be fair and unbiased and really represent our clients in their best interest.

[00:10:13] Tina Grimes: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I heard a. Speaker a couple of years ago, he was talking about the implicit bias training and or implicit bias. And, and he is a professor down in Austin, Texas an African-American gentlemen and he on the training, he said, I have a bias against, you know, young blonde, white girls, I immediately assume they're all, you know, little spoiled, little rich girls from a fraternity. That's my bias.

[00:10:36] Alice Lema: Oh, that's interesting.

[00:10:37] Tina Grimes: And he said I had it slammed in my face one day because I had a student that, you know, I just put that projected that bias onto her and come to find out she was a, you know, an orphan that had struggled her whole life been raised in foster homes. And he said, when we sat down and visited, we found out we had a whole lot in common that, you know, and I, she, she blew my biases away. And he said ever since then I've started recognizing, okay, I can't just stereotype, you know, it was an eye opener for him to recognize that he had that bias and we all have them just, you know, because of the way we're raised.

[00:11:13] I mean I'm a native Southern Oregon girl, so I immediately, nothing against Portland, but all of us, we have an implicit bias, usually against we hear the word Portland and we go, oh, Portland, big city. You don't understand the rest of us in Oregon, or don't care about the rest. Yeah. I mean, that is like an automatic implicit bias for a lot of us.

[00:11:35] Alice Lema: So it's so true. How funny? Yeah. Well, maybe they'll come up with a training for that. So the rogue valley association realtors is, does such a great job in the education department. Can you speak a little bit about what trainings are available that the realtors can go to?

[00:11:53] Tina Grimes: Well, wow. There's stuff going on all the time, specifically related to fair housing. One of the cool things you guys that's come out, that's again, fairly new. That's come out is there's, it's called the Fairhaven simulation training. And it's actually a, it's a, it's almost like a game, but it's you definitely learning when you go through it. But you you go through the simulation where you're put in these four different real estate transactions. In one your the seller's agent and in one your the buyer's agent and then an and I think in one your actually even the client and you go through these and, and the, you have to close four deals in, in the six month clock that's on the training.

[00:12:35] It's not actually six months long. And you know, at the end and you, you, observe your own implicit biases. You're going through the training there. You're asked questions throughout it. And how you answer it's a little bit like an old choose your own adventure book. If you remember those from back when we were kids because the way you answer those questions will direct what, how the simulation proceeds from.

[00:12:56] Wow. Fascinating training. Yeah. It's actually, it's, it's a lot of fun, but you are definitely learning while you're doing it. And isn't that fun that people can do any time.

[00:13:05] Alice Lema: So that's online.

[00:13:06] Tina Grimes: Yeah. It's a fascinating training. And then. Of course, we've got, we're doing fair housing classes all the time. In fact, I think we have one coming up. We did one earlier this month because of it being fair housing month. But then I think we have another one coming up in June. Not exactly positive, but yeah, it's quite, we're doing trainings all the time, so yeah.

[00:13:24] Alice Lema: And we, you know, for such a small community, you guys do an amazing job. Not only of keeping us properly educated, but having a wide variety. Yeah. It's really, really fun. So going back to fair housing specifically, it is such a hot topic. So and one of the things that we're going to talk about at some point or the fallout from the love letters, but it really is about implementing in who lives where. People should get to live wherever they want. So originally when the fair laws a fair housing law was implemented how has it evolved since the sixties to include other categories of people?

[00:14:04] Tina Grimes: Well, I'm not sure I can't speak to the federal level necessarily. I don't know that I don't know what the original protected classes were compared to what they are now.

[00:14:12] I know now there are seven protected classes in the, at the federal level. Excuse me, allergies. There's actually a, but there's 11 protected classes at the state level Oregon adds four protected classes.

[00:14:25] Alice Lema: So that's cool.

[00:14:26] Tina Grimes: . So we could touch on those in more detail if you want, when we come back.

[00:14:29] Alice Lema: Well, yeah, we're going to have to take a quick break as always great conversation. Tina Grimes, CEO of rogue valley association of realtors, one of our sponsors of the show. Thank you so much. We'll be right back after word from our sponsors. We're also brought to you by John L. Scott, Ashland and Medford and also Guy Giles mutual Omaha mortgage. Do not touch that dial. We'll be back with Tina Grimes, CEO of Rogue valley association of realtors talking about fair housing month. You don't want to miss it.

[00:15:01] Well, welcome back Southern Oregon to the real estate show. Alice Lema here, broker John L. Scott in Southern Oregon. And talking to Tina Grimes one of our favorite favorite people several times a year, she's the CEO of the rogue valley association of realtors in charge of keeping all of the agents informed, educated, and on track.

[00:15:19] And we're celebrating April fair housing month. So welcome back Tina. So right before the break, we were talking about some of the specific protected classes and how interesting it is that Oregon has more than the federal government. Can you speak to that roughly?

[00:15:35] Tina Grimes: Yeah, so the, so the seven protected classes under the federal fair housing act, and I looked these up over the break so I can make sure I say them correctly. So at the federal level, the seven protected classes are: race, color, national origin, religion, gender, familial status, and disability. So and some, a question I get asked when I teach this in our new member orientation class is what's the difference between race and national origin? Good question. Well you could be of all you use a sample, you could be a african-American descent, but be British by national origin, or you could be of Jewish descent, but be United States of America. So race and national origin are not the same thing necessarily. And then the familial status one often gets questions too. And that's largely you can't discriminate against, you know, that comes up. I think mostly you can't discriminate against a family with children or vice versa. You can't discriminate against somebody who doesn't have children or is not married, that kind of thing. So familiar status you can't discriminate against.

[00:16:38] And then Oregon adds four classes. So there's actually 11 in the state of Oregon. They add marital merit. They specifically say marital status, not just familial status. They also add sexual orientation and gender identity and they add source of income. So you can't discriminate against someone if their only source of income, for example, is a section eight voucher or unemployment insurance, that kind of a thing. And then also, interestingly enough, Oregon state adds domestic violence victims as a protected class.

[00:17:09] Alice Lema: I didn't realize that someone would deny housing or impede their housing because of that domestic violence background. Yeah.

[00:17:19] Tina Grimes: So those would be, and then under the realtor code of ethics, there's 10 protected classes. The only one that's different under the realtor code of ethics than what Oregon has is that the domestic violence victims is a unique one to Oregon. So yeah, so the realtor code of ethics is almost the same as Oregon, with the exception of domestic violence victims. So like I said, federal has seven protected classes, but there's the, for those of you who are practicing real estate in Oregon, you actually have 11 that you need to be aware of.

[00:17:46] Alice Lema: Yeah. Well, and just as good humans, right? Yeah. It's, you know, And I know some people think that maybe this is a a little bit detail, but you know, I remember in the seventies, cause I had that happen to me where I was denied housing because I was unmarried. And they said that to my face unmarried woman, my mother in the sixties was denied because she was divorced.

[00:18:17] So it's, it's, you know, we've come a long way, but there's a lot of us around that still remember what it was like way back when, and some of those subtleties are certainly important.

[00:18:26] Tina Grimes: Yeah. Well, and I, you know, you hear stories again from, you know, sixties and seventies. While in fact you guys have had Rick Harris here on the show, he has, I've heard him tell a story when he he's taught fair housing for us.

[00:18:38] His mom was divorced and had seven kids and she had a horrible time finding housing for them because she was not only, you know, divorced, which was taboo at that time. But then also having seven kids as a single mom, You know, she, he said she repeatedly got turned down for housing because of those two reasons it happened all the time.

[00:19:01] And it had nothing to do, people always think fair housing has to do just with, you know, the color of your skin, but it, it it's so much more than that. And it's, it's really just, everybody has a right to have a roof over their head. And, you know, you can't discriminate against them because they don't fit your personal viewpoint of what, how a person should live. That's really what it boils down to.

[00:19:24] Alice Lema: Exactly. Everybody should have a fair shot. Yeah, yeah. On the merits of their approval, their ability to pay that and pay is really the only thing that should matter. Yep, exactly. Exactly. So I know in some of the landlord tenant movements the criminality background is starting to change a little bit too.

[00:19:45] I wonder if at some point that'll change in the Oregon or federal fair housing. It hasn't been brought up too much yet, but that's how they populate, you know, the movement start somewhere and then it moves on. So as the CEO of RVAR during fair housing week, what are some of the activities, and some of the ways that you guys are celebrating and reminding folks of the fair housing act.

[00:20:10] Tina Grimes: Well in our weekly newsletters that you guys get we've been reminding everybody that April is for housing month. And in each of the newsletters we've had and different tidbit about it for you guys to read up on and classes. We've been promoting a couple of classes and really you know, I've been putting it on Facebook and on social media NAR came out with a poster that we used that we love that it's just let's let's make unfair housing history.

[00:20:36] Alice Lema: Oh that's great, very catchy.

[00:20:39] Tina Grimes: Yeah. So we've been pushing that out on social media and, you know just trying to put, just trying to get the word out as much as we can really just to make people aware. Cause it really is about awareness.

[00:20:50] Alice Lema: Okay. So do you ever get phone calls from the general public with questions about this?

[00:20:55] Tina Grimes: Once in a great while, not, not very often. Yeah, really. I mean, so I've been with the association for 21 years. And I've been doing the professional standards administration pretty much that whole time. And I can only think of maybe twice, but I've gotten a caller complaint related to fair housing.

[00:21:15] Alice Lema: Well, that speaks very highly of our agent pool. Doesn't it? Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So during the shutdown, when people were moving from other places to here and they were doing it virtually, we did have calls, asking unusual questions, questions I've never had before. And this is how I don't pay attention too much to the politics of things. I just sell houses, but we had questions about, is it a red area or a blue area? It was like, well, what are you talking about?

[00:21:46] Tina Grimes: So yeah, yeah. That you were talking about the criminality possibly becoming a protected class with the way things are going in the country today. Your political affiliation might become a protected class at the rate we are going.

[00:22:00] Alice Lema: That's tongue in cheek folks, but it's, but that's what, that's what she's talking about.

[00:22:05] Tina Grimes: People asking, is it a red area or a blue area that we can look good or Democrat? It's just crazy. That's crazy to me.

[00:22:13] Alice Lema: Yeah. Yeah. Cause we're all just people. And one of the fun things about being in Southern Oregon is we are an incredibly diverse community. I know people poke fun of us that were kind of homogenous and it's like, we're not, no, there's a little bit of everybody here and we all get along with each other. So yes. My introduction to the red blue. I don't know what are you talking about? So but interestingly enough, in Southern Oregon, we do have quite a nice blend of different walks of life.

[00:22:43] And and everybody gets along fine and we all have houses for each other. So. It's a pretty easy place to live. I think part of the livability of Southern Oregon is that inclusive inclusiveness.

[00:22:56] Tina Grimes: Yes. Yeah. And we, you know, our, our realtor members represent all walks which have, I mean, we've got realtor members on every end of the spectrum. Yeah. Yeah. And I love that. And in fact, we're, we're actually here in the coming months going to be making a concerted effort to make sure that our leadership at our association level is more representative of the diversity that we have in our membership, because we think that's important.

[00:23:21] You know, you don't know. You don't, you're not able to stay relevant and have new ideas and fresh perspectives. If you aren't, including all of those perspectives of all your members. And that translates out to the world in general, too, you gotta, you know, you gotta listen to the different perspectives. That's how you. That's how you improve. That's how you grow.

[00:23:41] Alice Lema: When I think one of the great movements that the rogue valley association realtors has had is the younger agents, the millennials, and, you know, the 30 agents that are doing the 30 under 30 movement, I think has been very, very well representative and, and kind of an underserved group of folks is. We jokingly dismiss some of those younger people and they're quite quite a strong movement in our area.

[00:24:08] Tina Grimes: Yeah. I I've noticed that in our new member orientation classes, we're getting more and more younger agents, which I love. They're starting in the business right out of high school or right out of college instead of oh wow. Instead of it being a second career or a third career, in some cases which was nothing against that will take them at all ages.

[00:24:26] We love it. You know, I do love that more, that more people are seeing it as a lifelong career, not just something to do after you've already done your career. You know, the median age for realtors across the country is 59.

[00:24:41] Alice Lema: Oh, I didn't know that.

[00:24:44] Tina Grimes: I haven't done. I don't have the data to be able to do say what the median age here is here locally, but I bet it would be pretty close to that.

[00:24:51] So I love seeing the younger, the younger crowd coming in and you know, some of them are really just taking off and, and they're, they're, they're doing amazing.

[00:24:59] Alice Lema: So, and they're hard workers.

[00:25:01] Tina Grimes: They are very hard workers and it's, but they, but they do operate in a different mindset. So, you know, getting, making sure we're providing services across the spectrum that that's been a new challenge for us. So, you know, we're, we're still a work in progress on that, but I think we're doing okay so far.

[00:25:19] Alice Lema: Yeah. Yeah. And just the sheer number of new agents in that age group is really, really exciting. I knew we had a lot of older in the business, I didn't realize the national age average was 59. That's, that is surprising. But I think you're right. I think a lot of people do come to the real estate industry as a second or third career. And it's so fun to see the youngers jumping in and taking it seriously and doing well. Yeah. So so can you speak briefly in the minute or so we have left how many, do we know how many new agents have been coming in lately? Do we know how many new people are joining.

[00:25:59] Tina Grimes: We're at an all-time high in membership count. There's right now, there's 1500 realtors across Jackson and Josephine Counties.

[00:26:11] Alice Lema: Wow. So do I remember correctly? The last time we had that many was, had to be we before the crash.

[00:26:20] Tina Grimes: We've actually never had that many.

[00:26:21] Alice Lema: We've never had that many. Oh my gosh. Wow. Wow. Do you know, is it heavier in Josephine and Jackson county or are they just numbers kind of grouped together?

[00:26:34] Tina Grimes: As far as where they're coming in new from you mean? You know, I'd say representative of the, you know, cause Jackson county obviously has the lion's share of the, the agents just because that's, Medford's much bigger area.

[00:26:48] So a lot more agents there. I'd say it's probably pretty equal though. If you just do it on a per capita basis, rather than, you know, it is a smaller number overall, but if you look at it per capita, it's probably about equal.

[00:27:02] Alice Lema: Well, well, congratulations to us. It's a great, it's a great career and we're so happy to have all the youngers. We welcome them with open arms. They are a breath of fresh air for sure. So we're going to have to take a quick break, but we're talking to Tina Grimes, the CEO of the rogue valley association realtors here locally, one of our favorite favorite people, we're going to be back for our last segment. So please do not touch that dial. We have more great information. From Tina, don't go away.

[00:27:33] Well, hi again, everybody. Alice Lema here, broker John L. Scott. Welcome you back to the real estate show. We're talking here with Tina Grimes one of my favorite people in the world and a great guest here on the real estate show. CEO of Rogue association of realtors, Tina Grimes.

[00:27:49] And during the break, Tina, we were talking a little bit about fair housing April's fair housing month. And then of course the love letters came up, you know, and we, I forgot about that whole fiasco. So why don't you bring us up to speed? Where, where things stand legally so that people know, and then let's talk about how to get the word out so people can follow the rules on that one.

[00:28:12] Tina Grimes: Yeah. So last year the Oregon state legislator passed a law prohibiting love letters from being part of a transaction from, or part of an offer from a buyer.

[00:28:23] Alice Lema: And, and those are letters, lets tell people what they are in case they don't know that.

[00:28:26] Tina Grimes: That's when a buyer submits an offer, but then they also include a letter to the seller about why, why they love the house, why they want to live there, why the sellers should pick their offer.

[00:28:37] That's why they're referred to as love letters. So the, the Oregon state legislature, first state in the country to pass such a law that passed a law that prohibited love letters from being included as part of an offer to purchase. There was a lawsuit that got filed. It was supposed to go into effect January one.

[00:28:55] And there was a lawsuit that got filed against it saying it was, I'm not, I can't remember the exact reason why it wasn't prohibiting free speech, but it was something along those lines. And a judge just, I want to say, or maybe a month ago, a judge actually has not ruled, they haven't ruled on the lawsuit yet, but the judge did put a stay of execution on, on the law going into place.

[00:29:20] So the law is still on the books, but it is not being it is not effective at the moment. Cause the judge put the stay on it. So that, so right now love letters are still allowed because they're, they're not there, the law is not in place. I'm not sure when they're expecting an actual ruling on the lawsuit itself as to whether the law is unconstitutional or not. But That that's that's that could be years, honestly, that could take years the way the law, the way lawsuits can work their way through the courts.

[00:29:46] It could take a long time. So in the meantime, this stays in place, which means you can still write love letters. The caution I will throw out in, and the reason behind why the law even got passed to begin with is that they are a potential fair housing violation. They, and they put both the buyer and the, well, they mainly put the seller at risk.

[00:30:04] They also put the listing broker at risk of this potential fair housing violation. Because of you know, in this world right now where most properties are getting multiple offers if a seller is just looking at each offer objectively you know, they may, they're going to see the offer. You know, the sale, the amount of money that's being offered, what kind of financing it's going to be.

[00:30:23] So they know how quick of a close it can be. There that's that's, those are the objective things, but then they get these lovely, and some of them even include pictures, so they immediately go, oh, they look like me. I want them to live in my house because you're you have a huge emotional attachment to your home.

[00:30:42] That's that's a given. And so when you're selling your home, You like the idea of someone continuing your legacy in that home. So you're going to naturally gravitate towards the ones that look like you, but then that's a huge, fair housing, potential fair housing issue, because what if they were the ones that offered the lowest price, but you're picking them just because of how they look.

[00:31:03] Right. So it it's it's it's that's why the law was passed to begin with. And that's why it's a huge caution. Now if the buyer writes a love letter and all they're doing is talking about the property and why they love the property, and they don't say anything personal about themselves and they don't include a picture, no problem. But very few of them are like that.

[00:31:23] Alice Lema: They're not, they're not. And there are still love letters, being sent to sellers. And so again, I agree with your caution, Tina because you don't want problems later when they do sort out what they're going to do or not do,. But also you don't want to be unfair.

[00:31:38] Let's just talk about let's, let's use the merits of the transaction and not my neighbor, my neighbor will like them better. We have sellers say that I'm not going to sell to such and such, cause I don't want to upset my neighbors. That's really not fair. And that's not okay.

[00:31:55] Tina Grimes: No, I know. Well, you've seen this too that there are sellers now that are just saying they're, they're instructing their listing broker to put right in the list, seller will not re will not accept any love letters and. Sellers that's absolutely within your rights to do so. That doesn't mean that a buyer won't still try to submit one, but the seller has stated up front they're not going to look at it.

[00:32:18] Alice Lema: And if a listing agent gets one of those already knowing the seller doesn't want it, which Tina and I think is a good idea for sellers not to accept those, then the listing agent has to explain to the buyer's agent we're not delivering it. And that's kind of tricky because as agents we're supposed to deliver everything.

[00:32:38] Tina Grimes: Yeah. Yeah. Well, and I've even, I've heard of some listing brokers that have gone so far as the, when that they actually take all the offers they've received and they, they basically put them all on a spreadsheet and leave off names. Leave off everything so that it really is an objective look at the offers that have come in based on their criteria.

[00:33:00] And that's what they, you know, of course the seller has to be willing to only look at that amount of detail before they make the decision. So, you know, it's a conversation that the listing brokers has to have with the seller. But yeah, I mean, You know, if after the offer is accepted, if then they want to look at the buyer love letter and you know, that's a different story. But as part of making the decision, it's, it's risky.

[00:33:25] Alice Lema: Yeah, it really is. And I think it's even more risky now that we're in flux with the law. You know, at least before it was definitely this way, then it was definitely the other way. And now it's like, this is the most dangerous part, in my opinion. Yeah, yeah. Please don't send them folks and if you get them, please send them back.

[00:33:46] Yeah. And it's interesting the kind of things that will tug at a seller's heart. You know, we've had people write down that they have a disabled fill in the blank, mother, daughter, son, husband, grandfather. And you know, if you make your choice and you pick one person over another, not on the merits, then is that really right. And that's why we have fair housing month.

[00:34:09] Tina Grimes: Yeah. Yeah. Cause I guess, like I said, you D you do create an emotional attachment to your home. And, and so you want to try to, you want to do your best to make sure if you're selling that home, that you're making an unemotional decision about who to sell it to.

[00:34:25] Alice Lema: So if anybody in the general public is having more questions, how would they get ahold of the rogue valley association of realtors to get some help in this.

[00:34:33] Tina Grimes: Well, actually we can't really give out much advice. So I'm not an attorney, but the fair housing council of Oregon is an excellent resource for the general public, if they have more questions about that.

[00:34:43] Alice Lema: Okay, great. And we've got 11, 11 items to watch for in the state of Oregon protected classes and seven federal. Yeah. So once again, Oregon is leading the pack. We are very, yeah, we're very progressive out here. But in this respect, it's a good, it's a good thing. So in just a few seconds we want to say thank you to Tina Grimes, the CEO of rogue valley association.

[00:35:11] Tina Grimes: Thank you for having me. It was pleasure as always.

[00:35:14] Alice Lema: And we look forward to having you back on again, maybe this summer, we can look back and see see how this crazy world turns out right. Three to six months. So thanks again, folks for listening. This broadcast will be repeated tomorrow, Sunday at 6:00 PM.

[00:35:29] We want to say thank you to our sponsors, Rogue Valley association of realtors, Guy Giles, mutual of Omaha mortgage and John L. Scott Ashland and Medford have a beautiful Southern Oregon weekend.

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