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Old 03-28-2011, 03:37 PM
 
Location: Pinal County, Arizona
25,107 posts, read 37,320,565 times
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MORTGAGE ASSISTANCE RELIEF SERVICES (MARS) rule requirements for Short Sale Brokers

The rule(s) apply to any person that provides, offers to provide, or arranges for others to provide, any "mortgage assistance relief service.

This new rule, promulgated by the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) can be found (in part) at 16 CFR 322.2(a)(1) - section dealing with advertising.

If you are doing Short sales - on either side - you had better know this rule

Want to talk about it?
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Old 03-28-2011, 03:45 PM
 
Location: Lakewood Ranch, FL
5,643 posts, read 9,761,969 times
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Not much to talk about, really. Just another form to give to customers we refer to attorneys. I don't really advertise this way but, if I did, I'd just add the disclosures. If you are talking about the necessity of the regulations, I guess my answer is pretty standard...if there were no abuses going on, there'd be no need for them.
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Old 03-28-2011, 03:52 PM
 
Location: Mokelumne Hill, CA & El Pescadero, BCS MX.
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Deleted.

Last edited by DMenscha; 03-28-2011 at 04:06 PM..
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Old 03-28-2011, 04:09 PM
 
Location: Salem, OR
15,065 posts, read 37,233,038 times
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I had my attorney redo my short sale listing agreement to incorporate the required verbiage and I have a form to give them for the other requirement upon lender acceptance.

I agree with bbronston. We bring these regulations on ourselves by unleashing completely unqualified agents onto consumers. It isn't a big deal from where I sit because most of the required verbiage was already in my listing agreement.
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Old 03-28-2011, 04:22 PM
 
Location: Mokelumne Hill, CA & El Pescadero, BCS MX.
6,958 posts, read 20,968,045 times
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Here's what the CA Assn of Realtors has posted for us;

How does the Rule apply to businesses in the mortgage industry?
* Mortgage Brokers. The Rule covers mortgage brokers who promote loan origination or refinancing transactions as a way for homeowners to avoid foreclosure. Mortgage brokers who don't promote their services this way generally aren't covered by the Rule.
* Real Estate Agents. The Rule covers real estate agents who promote their services as a way to help consumers to avoid foreclosure, for example, by getting a lender's approval for a short sale. However, the Rule doesn't cover real estate agents who don't promote their services this way, and who only provide services to help people in buying or selling homes – like listing homes for sale, showing homes, or finding homes that meet buyers' needs.
* Lenders and servicers. The Rule doesn't cover lenders and servicers that offer mortgage assistance relief services in connection with loans they own or service. For example, the Rule wouldn't apply if a business that services a homeowner's loan helps the homeowner in modifying the loan to avoid foreclosure.
* Accountants and Financial Planners. The Rule doesn't cover professionals like accountants or financial planners as long as they don't claim expressly or by implication that using their services will help a homeowner get a loan modification or other mortgage relief.
* Attorneys. The Rule has special provisions for attorneys who provide mortgage assistance relief services. Read Mortgage Assistance Relief Services Rule: A Compliance Guide for Lawyers to find out more. Having an attorney on your staff or using outside attorneys to perform some of your services doesn't exempt you from the Rule. Nor does having an attorney place fees in a client trust account, by itself, allow you to collect fees in advance.

Even if you don't provide mortgage assistance relief services, you still may have obligations under the Rule. It's illegal to provide "substantial assistance" to someone if you know – or consciously avoid knowing – that they're violating the Rule. What amounts to substantial assistance depends on the facts. Activities like procuring leads (the contact information of potential customers) for MARS providers, helping a MARS provider with its back-room operations, reviewing customer files, processing customers' payments, or contacting customers' servicers are just a few examples. If you work with MARS providers, review their policies, procedures, and operations to make sure they're complying with the Rule because willful ignorance on your part simply isn't a defense.

MARS wouldn't apply to most real estate agents who merely represent short sale properties.
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Old 03-28-2011, 05:53 PM
 
Location: Pinal County, Arizona
25,107 posts, read 37,320,565 times
Reputation: 4925
Quote:
Originally Posted by DMenscha View Post
Here's what the CA Assn of Realtors has posted for us;

MARS wouldn't apply to most real estate agents who merely represent short sale properties.
The Arizona Assn of REALTORS has indicated just the opposite - that MARS regs DOES APPLY to real estate agents who do SS - they marketing is impacted, certain fee structures are impacted and disclosures.
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Old 03-28-2011, 05:57 PM
 
Location: Pinal County, Arizona
25,107 posts, read 37,320,565 times
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Also, in Arizona, a real estate licensee may NOT receive additional compensation for negotiating a short sale UNLESS they are licensed as a loan originator.
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Old 03-28-2011, 06:17 PM
 
Location: Lakewood Ranch, FL
5,643 posts, read 9,761,969 times
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Florida Association of Realtors also advises that the rule would be applicable to licensees who refer consumers to a MARS provider for short sale negotiation services since such referral itself could be construed as arranging a short sale.
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Old 03-28-2011, 06:40 PM
 
Location: Salem, OR
15,065 posts, read 37,233,038 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greatday View Post
The Arizona Assn of REALTORS has indicated just the opposite - that MARS regs DOES APPLY to real estate agents who do SS - they marketing is impacted, certain fee structures are impacted and disclosures.
This is what my attorney told me for Oregon too. If you are negotiating a short sale that is considered loan modification services and hence MARS applies to any agent that agrees to negotiate a short sale.
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