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Realtors® Advocate for New Laws to Protect Private Property Rights

Virginia Realtors® fought for several news laws during the 2017 General Assembly session to protect private property rights that will go into effect on July 1, 2017. Each year, the Realtor® organization advocates for legislation at the General Assembly to support the real estate industry, protect private property rights, and encourage homeownership.

In the 2017 General Assembly session, Realtors® helped enact laws that impact property management. New laws provide for a smoother transition for an existing tenant in the event of a property foreclosure by allowing the property management agreement to continue in place on a month-to-month basis and clarifying to whom the tenant pays their monthly rent. In addition, a new law also allows for an easier process for a property manager to transfer a security deposit to the owner and codifies in statute the common practice of a lease continuing month-to-month after a foreclosure.

In addition, Realtors® advocated for the passage of a new law that prohibits a homeowners’ association from restricting for lease and for signs unless that provision is included in the association’s covenants and restrictions. The new law also prevents an association from requiring a formal power of attorney from a real estate licensee to represent their client before the association. The bill also imposes a fine of up to $1,000 for associations failing to provide the association disclosure packet within the 14-day requirement stipulated by law.

Finally, Virginia Realtors® fought for a law that changes the name of the “red-flag” disclosure statement to the “buyer to beware” statement. This is more representative of what the statement actually is in practice, since the onus is on the buyer to investigate whether the issues raised in the buyer to beware statement are actually applicable to the property in question.
The Fredericksburg Area Association of Realtors® is already working on assembling a packet of issues for consideration in next year’s General Assembly session that will support the real industry and protect private property rights.

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