How will Schwarzenegger’s new Transparency Standards change Sacramento Real Estate?

Friday, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed legislation designed to protect homeowners and homebuyers in California…

Highlights of the bills the Governor signed Friday:

This one will answer a lot of questions my shortsale clients have; We all hoped this would be enacted:

-SB 1055 by Senator Michael Machado (D-Linden) allows taxpayers to exclude the forgiven mortgage debt from their incomes for state income tax purposes which brings the state in compliance with federal law passed last December 27.


We should see an increase of Mortgage Modifications and a resulting decline in foreclosures in our area because of these four:

-SB 870 by Senator Mark Ridley-Thomas (D-Los Angeles) this will allow the California Housing Finance Agency to quickly establish a mortgage refinance program.

-AB 69 by Assembly member Ted Lieu (D-Torrance) requires that all mortgage loan servicers report specific, detailed data to their licensing agency concerning loan modifications.

-SB 1065 by Senator Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana)  includes the refinancing of home mortgages in the criteria for a city or county-administered home financing program.

-SB 1675 by Senator Dave Cox (R-Fair Oaks) allows the California Department of Veterans Affairs to refinance existing home loans for veterans.

This one will be good for local printers and sign shops: (all those new business card orders and real estate sign changes…)

-SB 1461 by Senator Gloria Negrete McLeod (D-Montclair) says real estate agents will be required to disclose their license number on all first point of contact marketing materials and property purchases beginning July 1, 2009.

Other real estate laws passed:

-SB 1737 by Senator Michael Machado (D-Linden) authorizes the Department of Real Estate (DRE) to suspend (or bar) a person who has committed a violation of the Real Estate Law.

-AB 180 by Assembly Speaker Karen Bass (D-Los Angeles) provides for a registration and bonding process for foreclosure consultants; it also prohibits a foreclosure consultant from entering into an agreement to assist a homeowner in arranging for the release of surplus funds after the trustee’s sale is conducted.

-AB 2454 by Assemblymember Bill Emmerson (R-Redlands) would increase potential recovery for harmed consumers applying for Recovery Account payments filed on or after January 1, 2009, to $50,000 for any one transaction and $250,000 for any one licensee.

In the meantime;

Sept. 25 (Bloomberg) — California home prices tumbled a record 41 percent in August from a year earlier as foreclosure sales pushed down values in the most populous U.S. state.

More than 101,000 California households received a default notice, were warned of a pending auction or foreclosed on last month, RealtyTrac Inc., a seller of default data, said on Sept. 12. That was a third of the nation’s total and represented one in 130 homes in the state. Prices fell in all 20 of the state’s regions surveyed by the Realtors.

It may be a long winter…


By Forth Hoyt


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