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Flood Insurance Extended to Jan. 19th

On December 21, 2017, Congress extended the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) as part of the continuing resolution to keep the government open through January 19. NAR will continue working with Congress to ensure that the NFIP does not lapse while the Senate works on its version of the 5-year reauthorization and reform measure.

Read NAR’s letters to both the House(link is external) and Senate(link is external) urging the extension.

Learn more about the National Flood Insurance Program 

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Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passes House & Senate

On December 20, 2017, The U.S. House and Senate passed the conference agreement of the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act,” the bill passed the House by 224 to 201 margin and the Senate by 51 to 48 margin and was signed by President December 22, 2017. All individual provisions of the measure are generally effective after December 31, 2017, for the 2018 tax filing year and expire on December 31, 2025, unless otherwise noted. The provisions do not affect tax filings for 2017 unless noted.

To read NAR’s analysis of the bill’s provisions impacting real estate, please go to "The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act - What it Means for Homeowners and Real Estate Professionals."

NAR will be providing ongoing updates and guidance to members in the coming weeks, as well as working with Congress and the Administration to address additional concerns through future legislation and rulemaking. Lawmakers have already signaled a desire to fine tune elements of the "Tax Cuts and Jobs Act" as well as address additional tax provisions not included in this legislation in 2018, and REALTORS® will need to continue to be engaged in the process.

Don't miss the January 4th Facebook live event How Tax Reform Will Affect Your Taxes as a Real Estate Professional 2:00 pm - 2:30 pm EST 

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It is Not Too Late to Influence Congress on Tax Reform

 

SPEAK UP

Thanks to our members’ engagement, REALTORS have helped positively influence tax reform in some key areas. For example, both the House and Senate have agreed to maintain deductibility of state and local property taxes up to $10,000 and to maintain Section 1031 tax-deferred exchanges in their present form for real estate investments.

BUT OUR WORK IS NOT DONE. We still have an opportunity to influence Congress to help make the tax reform bill more favorable to homeowners and consumers. Now that both the House and Senate have passed The Tax Cut and Jobs Act, a Conference Committee will begin to address the differences between the two bills. Important improvements in the legislation are possible by encouraging Congress to maintain the current law for the mortgage interest deduction and capital gains exclusion. Retaining current law makes the bill more favorable to homeownership.

Take action to tell Congress to protect middle-class homeowners.
TAKE ACTION

VIEW NAR TAX REFORM PORTAL

• Facts on the Mortgage Interest Deduction in the U.S.: State-By-State Comparison
Mortgage Interest and Real Estate Tax Deductions by Congressional District
In-Depth: Mortgage Interest Deduction by State 
• View Side by Side Comparison of House and Senate Tax Reform Legislation

 

House Passage of Flood Bill Critical Step Toward Re-authorization, Reform

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WASHINGTON (November 14, 2017) – With less than a month left before the National Flood Insurance Program expires, the National Association of Realtors® is applauding the House of Representatives for passing what NAR believes is smart, much-needed support for the program.

"Realtors® know first-hand what happens when the NFIP expires, and it isn’t good for consumers, businesses or our communities," said NAR President Elizabeth Mendenhall, a sixth-generation Realtor® from Columbia, Missouri, and CEO of RE/MAX Boone Realty. "We appreciate the leadership that members of Congress have shown passing sound reforms, which will strengthen the program, protect property owners and deliver good results for taxpayers."

The NFIP is responsible for providing the vast majority of flood insurance policies in over 20,000 communities nationwide. Without it, most consumers would be unable to purchase the flood insurance that’s required on mortgages in a floodplain. In the past, NAR has shown that 40,000 home sales are lost every month when the program is unavailable.

H.R. 2874, the "21st Century Flood Reform Act," reauthorizes the NFIP for five years, while taking steps to reform the program. These reforms include:

Authorizing $1 billion to elevate, buy out or mitigate high-risk properties
Capping flood insurance premiums at $10,000 per year for homeowners
Removing hurdles to the private flood insurance market, which often offers better coverage at lower cost than the NFIP.
Providing for community flood maps and a homeowner’s ability to appeal their flood designation
Better aligning NFIP rates to match a property’s true risk, particularly for in-land and lower-value properties
Improving the claims process for flood victims
Addressing repeatedly flooded properties, which account for 2 percent of NFIP policies but 25 percent of claim payments
These changes, Mendenhall said, would improve the NFIP’s financial health, put consumers on a stronger footing, and deliver certainty to current and prospective homeowners.

"The conversation happening in Washington on this issue is fundamentally about how we deliver the best results for consumers and taxpayers, and that’s a good conversation to have," Mendenhall said. "Realtors® are simply asking that Congress swiftly deliver on the promise of this program so buyers can move forward without interruption and homeowners know their most important asset is protected. With December 8 around the corner, we’re hopeful the Senate will now step up to the plate and do their part by passing a flood reform and reauthorization package without delay."

The National Association of Realtors®, "The Voice for Real Estate," is America’s largest trade association, representing 1.3 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.