New California Real Estate Laws
The dawn of 2021 has brought with it a new moment to adjust, and for those in the real estate field that includes our understanding of pertinent laws. Here is a review of the new real estate related laws that are going into effect this January in California, provided by the Tahoe Sierra Board of Realtors.
Proposition 19 (Statewide Tax Basis Portability)
With the passage of Proposition 19, a homeowner who is 55 years of age or older, severely disabled or whose home has been substantially damaged by wildfire or natural disaster may transfer the taxable value of their primary residence to:
• A replacement primary residence
• Anywhere in the state
• Regardless of the value of the replacement primary residence (with adjustments if “greater” in value)
• Within two years of the sale
• Up to three times (but without limitation for those whose houses were destroyed by fire)
AB 38 (Home Hardening Disclosure)
This law requires delivery of a statutory disclosure for homes in designated high fire areas (Truckee and Tahoe are designated) built before 2010. In it, the seller will disclose specified home hardening retrofits that the property lacks. The disclosure will apply to any property in which the Transfer Disclosure Statement must be delivered, and the standard TDS exemptions and cancellation rights apply.
This law is not actually a new law for 2021. In fact, it was passed the year before last. However, it applies to transactions starting January 1 of this year. C.A.R.’s new form “Home Fire Hardening Disclosure and Advisory” (HHDA) may be used to comply with this disclosure.
AB 3182 (The Right to Rent out Your Unit in a Common Interest Development)
This new law requires common interest developments (CIDs) to allow at least 25 percent of owners to rent or lease out their units starting January 1, 2021, regardless of whether the HOA has formally amended their governing documents. If the owner occupies their own unit then renting out a space within the unit, an ADU or junior ADU must be permitted. No matter what, the existing rights that owners currently enjoy renting out their units cannot be changed.
SB 1079 (Tenant, Prospective Owner and Non-Profit Right of First Refusal to Purchase Residential Property after Foreclosure)
This law grants tenants, prospective owner-occupants, nonprofit affordable housing providers, and other entities a 45-day window to purchase residential property through foreclosure if they can match (in the case of tenants) or exceed (in the case of other purchasers) the last and highest bid made on residential one to four single-family homes at the foreclosure auction. To ensure that residential properties are available to potential consumer purchasers, this law prohibits a trustee at a foreclosure sale from bundling the sale one to four single-family homes. Each one must be sold as a single sale.
AB 3088 (Temporary Statewide Rent Moratorium)
The “COVID-19 Tenant Protection Act of 2020” creates a statewide rent moratorium effective from March 1, 2020 through January 31, 2021, for when a tenant cannot meet the rent due to a COVID related financial hardship. This law has been extended to February 28, 2021. Under this law, rent owed during this period may be collected at the owner’s option through small claims court beginning March 1, 2020, for any amount, but cannot be collected in connection with an action for possession. Not only is a rent moratorium put in place but the just cause eviction rules under the statewide just cause eviction laws are extended temporarily to all properties even if previously exempt from the just cause eviction rules. However, a homeowner of a single-family home can still evict a tenant for no cause if the owner is in contract to sell to a buyer who will take occupancy.
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