The GAD Top Three | February 12th, 2024

In this week’s GAD Top 3, Aspire North REALTORS® encourages you to sign up for REALTOR® Party Mobile Alerts by texting REALTOR to 30644 before a Statewide Call to Action THIS WEEK. Also, Clearwater Township renews its consideration of a short-term rental ordinance with the intention of enacting it as soon as this summer. Lastly, the Bingham Township zoning plan calls for support of workforce housing.

1. Sign Up for REALTOR® Party Alerts, Very Important Call to Action Happening THIS WEEK

The Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) is proposing to the State Legislature a $50 million increase to the Real Estate Transfer Tax on ALL real estate transactions. Michigan Realtors® has met with MSHDA on several occasions to discuss this initiative and how it would adversely affect the real estate market, housing inventory, and the citizens of the state. Now they need your help in a Call to Action going out THIS WEEK! Be ready to support this important Call to Action by joining the REALTOR® Party Mobile Alert Campaign. If you are not already signed up, take a second right now…. the GAD Top 3 can wait! And text REALTOR to 30644 to join the REALTOR Party Mobile Alert Campaign. By joining the REALTOR® Party Mobile Alert Campaign you also will have a chance to win a drawing for a $100 gift card to a local restaurant of your choice! 

2. Clearwater Township Board Renews Their Consideration of a STR Ordinance

On Saturday, February 3rd, the Clearwater Township Board of Directors met to discuss and review a draft short-term rental (STR) ordinance put together by Clearwater Township Supervisor Tom Backers. The meeting was recorded by Clearwater Township Clerk Christine Johnson and shared with Aspire North REALTORS® by member Kellie Sergent (thank you, Kellie!). At this time, the Clearwater Township supervisor has not decided to make public their draft STR ordinance until the Clearwater Township Board of Directors has finished with their draft. After watching the recording of Clearwater Township’s discussion and review of a draft STR ordinance, I've listed some highlights of what is being proposed:

  • Only nonowner-occupied households would need an STR license
  • They would not allow nonowner-occupied STRs to operate in R-1 districts
  • This policy would apply to all zoning districts across Clearwater Township

The Clearwater Township Board of Directors will meet to discuss this draft short-term rental ordinance and intend to complete their updates to this draft at a session on Saturday, March 2nd at 10 am at the Clearwater Township Hall (5440 River Street, Rapid City, MI 49676). We expect that the board of directors will make the draft available to the public following that March 2nd meeting.

Kellie and I have both reached out to the Clearwater Township supervisor and township clerk respectively to share the short-term rental ordinance established in the Village of Elk Rapids and point them to the Aspire North REALTORS® Short-Term Rental Guide. We also requested access to their current draft of their short-term rental ordinance, but at this time they have not made it publicly available. 

If you would like to view the Clearwater Township Short-Term Rental Ordinance Discussion held on Saturday, February 3rd you can view it through this recording shared on Facebook courtesy of Clearwater Township Clerk Christine Johnson. You can also keep tabs on all Clearwater Township community discussions on their Facebook page, Clearwater Township Matters. Thank you again to Kellie Sergent for bringing this important issue to the attention of Aspire North REALTORS®! If you have more information on Clearwater Township’s consideration of an STR ordinance or information on other real estate issues being discussed across the 6 county region (Antrim, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska, Leelanau, and Wexford), email information to   

3. Bingham Township Planning Commission Expresses Intention to Encourage Workforce Housing

In the zoning plan for Bingham Township, discussed at the February 1st Bingham Township Planning Commission Meeting, it states that Bingham Township will study ways to encourage workforce housing (pages 7 to 8). “The township will study and consider allowing more of the 'Missing Middle' housing, including, but not limited to multi-family, duplexes, tri-plexes, townhomes, bunkhouses, dormitories, etc." The Zoning Plan also mentions studying and considering Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) and incentives for the development of workforce housing. They state this all with the caveat that these housing types be increased “without increasing the number of short-term rentals.” Read more about the Bingham Township Zoning Plan here.

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.