BY: SYLVIA J. SIMMONS, ATTORNEY AT LAWCASEY MCINTOSH, PARALEGAL
The California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.) released several new and revised forms on July 29th. The following is a brief summary of those forms and what their changes mean to real estate practitioners.
Two new forms replace the Seller Instruction to Exclude Listing (SEL). REALTORS® should take note that C.A.R. does not monitor the legal validity of any prior form version and the C.A.R. User Protection Agreement only applies to the most current version of a form.
Seller Instruction to Exclude Listing from the Multiple Listing Service (SELM)
The SELM provides a request by the seller to the broker to advise the MLS that the seller wants to completely exclude the property from the MLS. Paragraph 6, “Impact/Reduction of Exposure,” has been added to expound on the fact that any reduction in exposure may lead to a reduction in the number of offers made and may negatively impact the sales price. Paragraph 7, “Seller Opt-Out,” has been reformatted to make it easier to identify the time limitation on the exclusion.
Seller Instruction to Exclude Listing from Internet (SELI)
The SELI provides a request by the seller to the broker to advise the MLS that the seller wants to (1) opt-out of Internet display of the property or its address and/or (2) try to prevent comment features or value estimate features on MLS-related internet sites.
Revised Forms – 8 Listing Agreements
According to C.A.R., it is okay to use prior revisions for each of the following forms.
Commercial and Residential Income Listing Agreement (CLA)
The CLA now includes the following new provisions:
- A checkbox to indicate whether the listing will or will not be provided to the MLS.
- A blank to fill in the name of the MLS of which the broker is a participant or subscriber.
- A checkbox to indicate whether the MLS is or is not the primary MLS for the geographic area of the property.
- Boxed language (from the RLA with revisions) to be initialed by the seller and broker that explains to the seller the purpose and benefits of using the MLS, the impact of opting out of the MLS, the difference between the MLS and closed/private listing clubs or groups, and the requirement that a broker must present all offers to the seller.
- A section explaining the MLS rule that a listing must be submitted to the MLS within a certain amount of time, but that certain MLS data can be opted out of if the seller executes a Form SELM or the local equivalent form.
- A section with the dispute resolution language found in the Residential Purchase Agreement form requiring mediation and agreeing to arbitration if the seller and broker initial the provision.
Manufactured Home Listing Agreement for Real and Personal Property (MHL)
The MHL contains all the same additions as added to the CLA.
Probate Listing Agreement (PL)
The PL contains the same additions as added to the CLA regarding the MLS (1 through 5 above), but not the dispute resolution language.
Residential Listing Agreement (RLA)
The RLA boxed language regarding the MLS is revised to be the same as in the CLA (now includes “presenting all offers,” “clubs or groups,” “excluding it from the MLS”, and “reduction in exposure”). Also, “DRE” is changed to “BRE.”
Residential Listing Agreement-Agency (RLAA)
Residential Listing Agreement-“Open” (RLAN)
Trust Listing Agreement (TLA)
Vacant Land Listing Agreement (VLL)
Each of these forms contains the same additions as made to the CLA regarding the MLS (1 through 5 above). Also added to each form is a warranty by seller that seller is the owner, no other persons or entities have title to the property, and seller has authority to execute the form and sell the property.
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The new forms released on July 29th emphasize the benefits the MLS offers to sellers and brokers, including the exposure that listing a property in the MLS offers. This implies that the property will sell more quickly and with less stress (and legwork) for both the seller and the broker.
As always, real estate practitioners should thoroughly understand the forms presented to their clients for signature. If a REALTOR® has any questions or concerns about which form is appropriate or how to complete a form, the broker, brokerage attorney, or other qualified legal counsel should be consulted.