Candidates for the IVAR Board of Directors Prepare to Lead
FRANK LICEA, 2017 IVAR PRESIDENT
In May, I had the opportunity to be part of the IVAR team that traveled first to our state Capitol in Sacramento and then to our nation’s Capitol in Washington DC to help carry the message of why homeownership matters to our communities.
Despite all of the tremendous work that our government affairs professionals performs at every level of the REALTOR® organization, we still find that nothing delivers the message quite as strongly as a few dozen constituents taking time to travel to visit lawmakers in their offices. If you are a REALTOR® and you have not had the opportunity to participate in Legislative Day, I hope you will get involved and be part of a future trip to see the impact we have for yourself.
Each year – actually more like every day – REALTORS® communicate with legislators to discuss proposed legislation that can hurt homeowners and the professionals they rely on to help achieve the American Dream. This year is shaping up to be a particularly busy year, driven by interesting political factors across our state and nation.
Current proposals could render the mortgage interest deduction functionally obsolete as an incentive for homeownership, raise state taxes on second home owners, end investment-generating benefits of the 1031 exchange, end dual agency in commercial transactions, create thousands in new taxes through a sales tax on services (such as commissions, property inspections, insurance,
etc) and make it much easier to raise taxes on homeowners.
Those are a handful of thousands of bills in the state legislature and Congress that impact our industry and, even more directly, the people we serve. In an era when we’re not building nearly enough to house our growing population, leading to unaffordable housing and even unaffordable rents, we see proposals every year to further saddle homeowners with the financial burden of making up for poor policies.
This is why it’s so important to be an active participant in the REALTOR® Party. We’re a nonpartisan organization that cares about issues that impact homeownership and real estate professionals. When you support the REALTOR® Party through a voluntary contribution, through volunteer efforts and by staying educated on the key issues, you are continuing to serve your clients and your business.
Homeownership isn’t just our business, it’s our mission. Protecting property rights isn’t just an idea, it’s an essential tenet of the American Dream.