Another reason why the 2018 inventory might stay tight – seniors waiting until this thing passes to downsize. Currently, the counties of Alameda, El Dorado, Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, Santa Clara, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Mateo, Tuolumne, and Ventura already permit such transfers, so the additional benefit would be for those who are moving to the other 47 counties.
My fellow REALTORS®,
I have great news to share! This week, C.A.R.’s Homeownership for Families and Tax Savings for Seniors Committee submitted nearly one million signatures to county elections officials throughout California. This will qualify the Property Tax Fairness Initiative (Portability) for the November 6, 2018, General Election ballot. We are one step closer to ensuring that seniors, the disabled and disaster victims can move freely throughout California without facing an unfair “moving penalty.”
This significant milestone illustrates the strength of our REALTOR® Party, demonstrating vision, leadership, and our grass roots campaign to improve housing opportunities for all Californians. Fixing California’s property tax system is critical to people across California and our state as a whole.
As champions for homeownership, REALTORS® face challenges with California’s property tax laws. You probably know a senior citizen who lives in a home that no longer fits their needs, but cannot afford to move and faces a massive property tax “moving penalty.” Our brothers, sisters, parents and grandparents shouldn’t be barred from downsizing or relocating to be closer to family because they cannot afford the property tax increase.
Similarly, severely disabled people may live in homes that are no longer safe or practical for them. Buying a more suitable home is often impossible because they face significant property tax increases when they move, even if they move to a less expensive home. Finally, disaster victims like those affected by the massive northern California wildfires and Santa Barbara mudslides have arbitrary and limited protections. Disaster victims, too, face a moving penalty if they choose to move outside of their disaster-torn county.
Passing the Property Tax Fairness Initiative reforms what is a confusing and inconsistent approach to property taxation. Senior homeowners can keep their existing tax base when they move, but only one time and only when moving to a home of equal or lower price within their current county of residence, or in 11 counties that allow an exemption. Moving to a high cost part of California is nearly impossible, regardless of circumstance. C.A.R.’s initiative fixes these issues so these homeowners can move throughout California and adjusts their property taxes up if their new home is more expensive. It allows people to move more than once, as circumstances may require. In short, it is the right thing to do for people who are already paying their fair share in property taxes.
Nobody should be penalized due to their life circumstances. That’s not right. Not in California.
To qualify the measure for the ballot, REALTORS® led a grassroots effort that laid the foundation for a strong, statewide, General Election campaign. We’re going to need to work even harder now that the initiative is on the ballot, reaching out and building a bipartisan coalition of seniors, people with disabilities and advocates for disaster victims. The November Ballot will be crowded, and we need to ensure the voters are aware of this important measure and prepared to vote YES!
We all know that when REALTORS® lead, California wins. Our Property Tax Fairness Initiative is on track and, working together, we can eliminate the moving penalty and fix our property tax laws to improve housing opportunities for all Californians.
Thank you for all you do as proud members of California’s REALTOR® Party.
CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®