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Illinois REALTORS® attending the Professional Standards Workshop in Springfield Tuesday received explanations of changes to the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice, including the addition of specific language that addresses the use of misleading photos or other images in online content.

Bruce Aydt, a co-facilitator at the workshop, explained that the change is designed to answer questions about images that frequently are asked by members. In addition, numerous wording changes to the Code of Ethics and Arbitration Manual were outlined, a new Arbitration Settlement Agreement was adopted, learning objectives for the Code of Ethics Training were updated and the NAR approved funding for the Commitment to Excellence education platform and will start development this year.

“It’s all about the angle,” said co-facilitator Diane Disbrow, referring to sample photos of homes shown on projector screens at the front of the room. One image taken next to a swimming pool in a backyard made it appear to be an in-ground version, while a second image showed the pool was actually a smaller above-ground version.

Aydt and Disbrow also thanked all professional standards enforcement volunteers for their service to their communities, their profession and their clients.

Following their presentation, Aydt and Disbrow led the class of approximately 150 REALTORS through a review exercise of two case studies and then presented a session on Ethics and Arbitration Hearings.

Afternoon sessions were scheduled to include a mock arbitration hearing, information on the Ombudsman Program, the Ethics Citation Program and a question and answer period.

For more information, see the Professional Standards Toolkit and a web page about Copyright and images.

The post REALTORS® emphasize use of misleading online images is violation of Code of Ethics appeared first on Illinois REALTORS.

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For the fifth straight year, the number of requests for assistance increased for the Illinois REALTORS® Ombudsman Program.

The Ombudsman Program allows the association to tap the expertise of experienced real estate professionals who are trained in problem solving. An Ombudsman acts as an intermediary to assist consumers and REALTORS® in solving basic problems that arise during a transaction.

“The rising number of requests is a sign that we’ve increased the visibility of the ombudsmen and the good work they do for consumers and colleagues,” said Rebecca Carraher, Illinois REALTORS® Director of Ethical Standards. “They can help bridge communication gaps as unbiased third parties. Ombudsmen care about their profession and devote many volunteer hours as a result.”

The program received 292 requests in 2017, up 78 from 2016. The largest number of complaints in 2017 were in:

  • the Code of Ethics (42),
  • business ethics (40),
  • contracts (27) and
  • earnest money (27).

In 2017, there were 134 Ethics Citation Complaints filed with 68 citations issued.

The number of citation complaints went up from 77 in 2016.

Approved by Illinois REALTORS®’ Board of Directors in 2014, the Ethics Citation Program allows REALTORS® and consumers working with REALTORS® to file complaints stemming from violations of certain Articles and Standards of Practice of the REALTOR® Code of Ethics. All complaints filed will be sent to a panel to review and if the panel finds the complaint has merit and falls within the parameters of the program, a citation will be issued with an accompanying fine.

The post REALTORS® raising visibility of Ombudsman and Ethics Citation programs to help consumers and colleagues appeared first on Illinois REALTORS.

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T.J. Augustine of the University of Illinois and David Conroy of CRT Labs/NAR will be the featured speakers next Tuesday at the Illinois REALTORS® Public Policy Meetings in East Peoria.

Augustine, Associate Vice President for Economic Development & Innovation, will explain the importance of the University of Illinois to the state’s economy and the value it brings to real estate investors, particularly international ones. He is responsible for fostering public-private partnerships between those who create innovative technology, investors and stakeholders in the process.

Conroy is an engineer at CRT Labs, which is a research arm of the National Association of REALTORS®. He will explain how blockchain technology is emerging as a way to securely transact property internationally. Also, he will explain the difference between blockchain and bitcoin.

The Global Business Council is scheduled to meet from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday at Embassy Suites East Peoria.

Vicky Sampah is the 2018 chair of the Illinois REALTORS® Global Business Council and Sharon Gorrell is the staff liaison.

The post Global Business Council to bring experts on digital currency and Illinois’ ecosystem to Public Policy Meetings appeared first on Illinois REALTORS.

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Get the 30-hour Online Broker Post-License Package now for just $269

With the deadline for Broker License Renewal just a few months away, Brokers who were licensed on or after February 1, 2016 can meet their education requirements easily with the Illinois REALTORS® Online 30-hour Broker Post-License package.

The package includes an online 15-hour Broker Post-License Topics course and a 15-hour interactive Post-License Practices Webinar taught by industry leaders Lynn Madison and Norm Willoughby.

Webinar Instructors for Broker Post-License Practices

Stay warm and toasty and complete your post-license education online from the comfort of your home or office before the April 30, 2018 renewal deadline: all online, no travel. no hassle, no test.

Don’t let time run out! Take your post-license courses for renewal from the TRUSTED SOURCE for state-approved education. Buy now for $269.

The post Get the no-exam 30-hour Online Broker Post-License Package for Renewal appeared first on Illinois REALTORS.

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During the 2017 Legislative Session, Illinois REALTORS® worked closely with the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) to develop, advocate, and negotiate important changes to the Real Estate License Act. The changes went into effect January 1, 2018.

One of outcomes of the legislation is that exams are no longer required for live classroom, webinar and distance learning pre-license, post-license and continuing education courses.

Because Illinois REALTORS has been working for months to get ready for these proposed changes, we were able to implement them right away. As a result, our students are no longer taking exams at the conclusion of our live and online classes.

We have received several questions from our members about course exam requirements. Here are some of the questions members have asked us:

Q.Why did Illinois REALTORS® support this change to exam requirements?

A. Our online and classroom courses are designed for interaction. We verify the student’s identification and are able to observe each student’s progress through the online course unit review quizzes. In our webinars, students respond to polls and questions and engage directly with the instructor. In the classroom, instructors have more flexibility to teach to the subject matter rather than the test. Because our courses are interactive, we are confident that our students will be able to gauge their competency through our unit reviews.

Q. Why is my course provider telling me I still have to take a course exam?

A. Each education provider is responsible for implementing the changes to their courses  necessary to go to a “no test” format for online learning and live classes. If the courses you purchased from another provider are not equipped to verify your identity, they may continue to require an exam to show completion of the course. Rest assured, however, that all Illinois REALTORS® Licensing & Training Center online, classroom, and live webinar courses do not require course exams.

Q. Why do home study courses require testing but online courses do not? What’s the difference?

A. Our online distance learning courses have the functionality to monitor quizzes and the completion of the course work. A home study is a course sent to the licensee by mail or email and there is no method to monitor the completion of the course. Illinois REALTORS® Licensing & Training Center does have a 12-hour CE Home Study package, but you will be required to take the examinations at one of our approved proctor locations.

If you have other questions about licensing requirements, please contact an Education Specialist by emailing education@illinoisrealtors.org.

The post Your Questions About Exam Requirements appeared first on Illinois REALTORS.

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Many REALTORS® involved in the professional standards process at the state and local levels will attend Illinois REALTORS® 2018 Professional Standards Workshops Tuesday at the Crowne Plaza in Springfield or Wednesday at Drury Lane in Oakbrook Terrace.

The morning sessions include:

  • Changes to the Code of Ethics
  • Professional Standards – Recap of Process
  • Grievance Committee Procedures
  • Ethics and Arbitration Hearings.

Following lunch, the afternoon sessions consist of:

  • A Mock Arbitration Hearing
  • The Ombudsman Program
  • The Ethics Citation Program.

The program ends with a Question and Answer session.

The post Pro Standards Workshops tomorrow and Wednesday appeared first on Illinois REALTORS.

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Terry Clemans, Executive Director of the National Consumer Reporting Association, will discuss credit scoring policy, expanded access to credit and credit security on housing during the Illinois REALTORS® Public Policy Meetings Jan. 16 in East Peoria.

Clemans will appear during the Housing Opportunity Working Group session at Embassy Suites East Peoria.  Founded in 1992, the National Consumer Reporting Association (formerly the National Credit Reporting Association, Inc.) is a national trade organization of consumer reporting agencies and associated professionals that provide products and services to mortgage lenders and property managers who use consumer reports for housing decisions. Clemans has been with NCRA for more than 17 years.

Representatives of the Illinois Housing Development Authority and the U.S. Department of Agriculture will provide overviews of home loan products from each organization.

The Public Policy Meetings will be held at the Embassy Suites East Peoria Jan. 15-18. For more information, see the Public Policy Meetings web page.

The post Credit expert to address Housing Opportunity Working Group Jan. 16 appeared first on Illinois REALTORS.

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Everyone interested in developing their leadership skills is encouraged to attend the Illinois REALTORS® Leadership Training Academy January 29-30 at the Westin Chicago in Itasca, Illinois.  Get Details and Daily Agenda here.

This two-day academy led by Tom Martin and Al Mayer was created for REALTORS®, designed by REALTORS®, and is taught by REALTORS® in an entertaining format.

Seating is limited: register online by January 22 for just $360.

Leadership Training Academy Participants will learn how to:

  • differentiate between leadership and management
  • make better decisions
  • create a motivational environment
  • maximize the potential of people
  • accept the responsibilities of leadership

Don’t miss this special event for new and aspiring leaders. Register Now!

The post Build Leadership Skills at Leadership Training Academy appeared first on Illinois REALTORS.

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Political analysts Dave Lundy and Chris Robling will be the featured speakers at the Illinois REALTORS® Public Policy Meetings on Jan. 17 in East Peoria.

The two analysts will appear during the RPAC Recognition Luncheon at the Embassy Suites East Peoria. The Public Policy Meetings kick off on Monday, Jan. 15 and continue through Jan. 18. See the Public Policy Meetings agenda.

Lundy and Robling appear on @WGN Radio in Chicago during “The Download” with Justin Kaufmann, 7 to 11 p.m., Monday through Friday. When discussing events of the day, Robling provides the Republican/conservative viewpoint while Lundy gives the Democrat/liberal view.

Robling is a business management consultant for Chris Robling Consulting in Chicago. He has served as Chicago Commissioner of Elections, executive director of the Cook County Republican Party, Congressional press secretary, news-radio anchor and public radio talk show host.

Lundy is the president of Aileron Communications in Chicago, with more than 20 years of strategic consulting experience with expertise in public affairs communications. He served as a campaign manager for gubernatorial, senatorial and local candidates and wrote a business technology column for the Chicago Sun-Times.  He’s is a frequent political commentator for National Public Radio, NBC, WGN-AM, WBEZ-FM, PBS and local television newscasts.

The post Lundy and Robling to headline RPAC Recognition Luncheon Jan. 17 appeared first on Illinois REALTORS.

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Bigstock Images

Many REALTORS® involved in the professional standards process at the state and local levels will attend Illinois REALTORS® 2018 Professional Standards Workshops next Tuesday at the Crowne Plaza in Springfield or next Wednesday at Drury Lane in Oakbrook Terrace.

The morning sessions include:

  • Changes to the Code of Ethics
  • Professional Standards – Recap of Process
  • Grievance Committee Procedures
  • Ethics and Arbitration Hearings.

Following lunch, the afternoon sessions consist of:

  • A Mock Arbitration Hearing
  • The Ombudsman Program
  • The Ethics Citation Program.

The program ends with a Question and Answer session.

The post Pro Standards Workshops will be next Tuesday and Wednesday appeared first on Illinois REALTORS.

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