C.A.R. LAUNCHES EFFORT TO QUALIFY
REAL ESTATE TAX PORTABILITY BALLOT MEASURE
In October, the Board of Directors of the California Association of REALTORS® voted to move forward with a ballot initiative to allow those aged 55 and over to sell their home and buy another while retaining their original tax protections under Prop 13.
Why is this needed to accomplish this?
Under Proposition 13, homeowners are protected from rapidly increasing property taxes. However, seniors, who are often on a fixed income, fear they will not be able to afford a big property tax increase if they sell their existing home and buy another one, discouraging them from ever moving. As a result of this “moving penalty,” almost three-quarters of homeowners 55 and older haven’t moved since 2000. The initiative will allow them to sell their home while keeping their property tax protections, and therefore create homeownership opportunities for young families.
How do property tax assessments work now?
The amount any homeowner pays in property taxes is based on the assessed value of their home at the time of purchase. Generally, Proposition 13 limits property taxes to 1 percent of the assessed value at the time of purchase even if the value of the property subsequently increases. Unfortunately, homeowners lose their Proposition 13 property tax savings when they move to another home.
Under another law, Proposition 60, senior homeowners – defined as 55 years of age or older – are allowed to transfer their property tax basis to another home in the same county so long as the purchase price of the replacement home is equal to, or less than, the sale price of the original residence. Under Proposition 60, a senior homeowner is limited to making only one such transfer over the course of his or her lifetime. And, if the spouse of a senior homeowner has already transferred a property tax basis, that senior homeowner is disqualified from making another transfer.
Proposition 90 is an extension of the original Proposition 60 program. Proposition 90 allows senior homeowners to transfer their property tax basis to a home in a different county so long as that county accepts such transfers. (At last count, only 11 counties are accepting transfers from other counties.) Propositions 60 and 90 are relatively limited. That’s where C.A.R.’s property tax base portability initiative comes in.
How will the initiative work? C.A.R.’s Portability Initiative would allow homeowners 55 years of age or older to transfer their Proposition 13 property tax base to a home of any price, located anywhere in the state, any number of times.
What’s next? C.A.R. is in the process of hiring a campaign firm to qualify the initiative for the November 2018 general election ballot. In the meantime, C.A.R. will be asking members to help collect signatures on petitions to qualify the initiative. You will receive more information about this effort in the coming weeks.
Who do I contact with additional questions? Please contact Keismond Trammer with additional questions. He can be reached (213) 739-8389 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Petitions are now available at all NSDCAR Service Centers. We urge REALTORS® to join in this effort by contacting friends and clients and getting them to sign the petition that will allow this to go on the Nov. 2018, ballot.
Here is some information to help you if you would like to circulate petitions.
✓ You can mail all completed petitions to:
▪ California Association of REALTORS® ▪
P.O. Box 1199
▪ Sacramento, CA 95812-9981, or simply return them to any NSDCAR Service Center.
✓ THE PETITIONS MUST BE SUBMITTED INTACT. DO NOT TEAR THE SIGNATURE PAGE OFF THE REST OF THE PETITION.
✓ C.A.R. needs time to process and verify signatures. Please send signed petitions back as soon as at least a few of them are complete. Don’t wait to send all of them back at once.
REALTORS®, affiliates or anyone who volunteers can circulate the petition as long as they are aware of and follow the following state laws. To knowingly fail to do so is a misdemeanor under state law. Please make sure that anyone circulating the petition is aware of these rules:
• Anyone circulating the petition must be at least 18 years old.
• If a petition circulator is a registered voter, he or she may sign the petition he or she is circulating.
• All signatures on each petition section must be from voters within the same county.
• Only persons who are registered, qualified voters at the time of signing are entitled to sign the petition
• A person can only sign a petition that is being circulated in his or her county of registration. If a member is present who resides in a different county than the one of the association area, they should NOT sign a petition anyone else is signing. You can however, give them a blank petition they can then sign and then sign again as the verifier. You can send that petition back to C.A.R. with the rest that you collect.
• Each signer must personally place on the petition his or her signature, printed name, residence address (or physical description of the location if there is no street address), and the name of the incorporated city or unincorporated community.
• Each signer may sign an initiative petition only once.
• THE PETITIONS MUST BE SUBMITTED INTACT. DO NOT TEAR THE SIGNATURE PAGE OFF THE REST OF THE PETITION.
• The signatures on the petition may not be used for any purpose other than qualifying the initiative for the ballot.
• Petition circulators must:
o Write the county in which they are circulating the petition on the first page and the signature page.
o Witness each person as he or she signs the petition.
o Fill in and sign the “Declaration of Circulator” on each copy of the petition that they have circulated. Please make sure all blank fields in this section are completed.
“The Beacon” is a regular publication of NSDCAR designed to keep you aware of important issues and to help members understand the power of the Realtor Voice and the value of the Realtor Advocacy program.