The GAD Top Three | April 10th, 2023

The GAD Top Three | April 10th, 2023 slideshow item

Sales Tax on Home Sales mentioned in TC Article, Housing Solutions Coalition Educates on the Negative Effects of Rent Control, and it's Fair Housing Month check out the Fairhaven: A Fair Housing Simulation.

This week I will touch on some negative consequences to the real estate industry of two well-intended solutions (sales tax on home sales to support affordable housing development and rent control) to provide more housing options that are currently being discussed nationally as well as right in our community. Also, don’t forget that April is Fair Housing Month! Participant in the Fairhaven: A Fair Housing Simulation to help you identify, prevent, and address discriminatory practices in real estate.

1. Sales Tax on Home Sales mentioned in TC Article.

This past Sunday, April 2nd, the Traverse City Record-Eagle in an article on low-to-middle income housing projects in Frankfort and Suttons Bay a hope was expressed for the funding of a revolving fund for affordable housing projects to be “possibly paid for out of sales taxes on home sales.” The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), as well as Michigan REALTORS® and Aspire North REALTORS®, opposes the application of state or local sales tax to real estate services and other professional services, including real estate broker commissions, title searches, appraisals, home inspections, property management services, and any other services related to the real estate transaction. NAR finds that the impact of such taxation places an undue burden on homeowners and other consumers of real estate services; falls disproportionately on the real estate sector; and is ultimately detrimental to state and local economies. Michigan REALTORS® has been notified of this and we will be keeping an eye on these conversations as they move forward.

2. Education on the Negative Effects of Rent Control through Housing Solutions Coalition

Housing Affordability is a crisis across the United States with a recent analysis of the U.S. Census Bureau Household Pulse Survey data by LendingTree which found that more than 8 million U.S. adults live in a household not caught up on rent payments, which is 13.17% of the nation’s adult renters. With these concerns many communities are working to find solutions, but not all ideas are good ideas. The Housing Solutions Coalition provides a resource for education on the issue of Rent Control to help educate the public and local communities on this issue. Rent control (also known as rent stabilization and/or rent caps) is a form of government-enforced price control that limits rents that property owners may charge in market rate rental housing. While the intent of rent control laws is to assist lower-income individuals, history has shown that rent control exacerbates shortages, disproportionally benefits higher-income households and ultimately drives up rents. Check out the Housing Solutions Coalition website to learn more. 

3. It's Fair Housing Month check out the Fairhaven: A Fair Housing Simulation

Every April, REALTORS® commemorate the passage of the Fair Housing Act of 1968 and reflect on housing discrimination and segregation, past and present. As community leaders, real estate professionals have an opportunity to be a part of equitable and inclusive change. Fair Housing Month signifies a recommitment to advancing equitable opportunities and expanding homeownership. In November 2020, the National Association of REALTORS® launched a great resource, Fairhaven: A Fair Housing Simulation, for REALTORS® that uses the power of storytelling to help members identify, prevent, and address discriminatory practices in real estate. Inspired by real stories, this online experience is a great learning experience to test your understanding of fair housing rules and practices; strengthen your ability to confront discrimination in the homebuying process. Check it out.

Connor Miller photo
Connor Miller
Government Affairs Director

As the Government Affairs Director, I work to advocate for the real estate industry through programming that promotes the election of pro-REALTOR® candidates; engage, inform, and activate membership and local government officials on key local and state real estate policies; provide staff support to the REALTOR® Political Action Committee that invests members' voluntary contributions to protect and promote the real estate industry; and support the Aspire North memberships’ involvement in community projects to further grow and strengthen our region.