Logically, one would think a national and international economic crisis would be reason enough for halting the advancement of federal regulations – which stifle economic activity and decrease America’s global competitiveness – but this week we are profiling two more examples of new federal efforts aimed at constricting property rights and America’s prosperity.
HUD RULES POISED TO KILL OFF SEGMENT OF HOME BUYING MARKET
The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) is proposing a new set of rules which will dramatically restrict the ability of private property owners to purchase and self-finance the sales of homes. These new rules will effectively eliminate an important segment of the home buying/home financing market where sellers can now purchase homes from owners self-financing the purchase.
The proposed HUD Rules interpreting the federal SAFE mortgage act can be viewed at the following link: By going to the federal website (http://www.regulations.gov/) and entering keywords “hud” and “safe.” Although an indictment of our founders idea of limiting government, this innovative website is a centralized web-resource created to inform citizens of the array of proposed federal regulations and to provide a convenient mechanism for recording public comment.
Today, American property owners may make up to five seller financed transactions per year, before being subject to mortgage originator licensing. This law currently allows entrepreneurial property owners to buy a property, renovate it for sale and offer the property for purchase under the terms of a self-financed mortgage. This allows for a wide variety of investors to engage in these small scale real estate transactions and frequently results in improved properties, improved property values and the purchase and ownership of properties which might not occur in the traditional mortgage market. Many properties in need of extensive repair might not be financed through traditional institutional lender or public mortgage financing programs due to the age or condition of the property, the need for upgrades and some individuals may have situations which prevent them from qualifying for a traditional mortgage.
The current HUD proposal would eliminate all seller financing unless the seller either lives in the home or becomes a licensed mortgage originator.
This is another example of the federal government stepping in to eliminate private market competition. How else can one explain that their taxpayer-backed federal mortgage programs are routinely approved and expanded (while increasing the national deficit) and yet here they are seeking to curtail a private-market solution and interfere with the private home buyer/home-financing contracts of American citizens.
Regulations like this are frequently advanced “under the radar” of even industry watch-dog groups. CPR recently learned of this issue through an urgent alert issued by the Real Estate Investors Association (REIA).
Today, (2-16-2010) is the last day for official public comments on this issue. Property owners outraged about the proposed elimination of private financing should take 3-4 minutes today to comment on the record. This is your chance to have your voice heard on this important regulatory this issue. By using the www.regulations.gov website, you can also see your comments are posted directly to the federal record regarding these proposed new rules.
The REIA alert suggested all comments should including the recommendation that “the proposed rules to be changed so that private individuals can originate and service loans on properties they personally own.” The alert also suggested other idea points, including: * bank loans are not available on some types of properties * the tight lending climate has made bank financing “out of reach” for many buyers * seller financing is an “age old” tradition based on private property rights * these rules would prohibit even partial seller financing – i.e. a “seller second” * according to HUD’s “Residential Finance Survey” in 2001, roughly 40% of all non-farm residential properties in the US are owned free and clear * an estimated 6 million Americans own a property other than their own primary residence * an estimated 4.5% of Americans own three or more properties, many purchased solely as investment properties * 40% of non-owner occupied residences are mobile homes which are more difficult to sell with bank financing * approximately 5% of homes in US are for sale or for lease * seller financing may be key to liquidating this inventory.
EPA HEARINGS ON NEW FLORIDA WATER REGULATIONS
Last month, CPR alerted its members to another serious regulatory threat facing Florida land owners. This week, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is holding public hearings in Florida (February 16-18) for the purpose of seeking citizen input on a new set of numeric nutrient criteria for water runoff in the State of Florida. These criteria will be the basis for a new set of broad-reaching water regulations which will uniquely penalize Florida land owners and businesses.
The voice of impacted Florida land owners must be heard and placed on the official record at these hearings. The EPA must be made aware of the negative consequences to Florida property owners and businesses. Strong citizen participation at these hearings is necessary to send a message regarding the sheer insanity of enacting new, burdensome regulations during a recession.
Land owners can attend one of the six public hearings being held February 16, 17 &18 to learn more and let your voice be heard. In order to participate in the public workshop, citizens are required to register online: http://yosemite.epa.gov/ost/WaterSciHearingReg.nsf/SignUp_Web?OpenForm but do not let this registration process deter you from attending, even if you can only stay for a few minutes at the beginning of the hearing.
The dates and locations of the public hearings:
- Tallahassee – February 16, 2010, 1:00-5:00 p.m. and 7:00-10:00 p.m., Holiday Inn Capitol East,1355 Apalachee Parkway, Tallahassee, Florida.
- Orlando – February 17, 2010, 1:00-5:00 p.m. and 7:00-10:00 p.m., Crowne Plaza Orlando Universal, 7800 Universal Boulevard, Orlando, Florida.
- West Palm Beach – February 18, 2010, 1:00-5:00 p.m. and 7:00-10:00 p.m., Holiday Inn Palm Beach Airport, 1301 Belvedere Road, West Palm Beach, Florida.
Additional background information:
- Associated Industries of Florida (AIF) has produced an outstanding Statement of Concern Regarding Proposed New Water Quality Regulations for the State of Florida which all Florida land owners should review: https://ssl.capwiz.com/flfb/attachments/NN_Statement_of_Concern___AIF_Final.pdf
- To view the Florida Farm Bureau‘s Ag Policy Bulletin on this critical issue, please visit: http://www.capwiz.com/flfb/issues/alert/?alertid=14542881
- To review a collective letter sent to Florida’s Congressional Delegation which land owners can use as a sample for communications, please visit: https://ssl.capwiz.com/flfb/attachments/111309_DelegationLetter.pdf
REGISTER TODAY FOR CPR’s UPCOMING LUNCHEON EVENT: DEFEATING AMENDMENT 4
Register today for CPR’s upcoming Issues Forum luncheon and candidates forum on Friday, February 26 from 11:30 to 1 p.m. at the Country Club of Orlando. This special event, “Defeating Amendment 4: The Challenge of Educating Florida’s Electorate” will feature Florida’s leading expert on referendum campaigns, John Sowinski of Consensus Communications. Property owners can also meet & mingle with candidates for state and local office at a special candidates forum following the keynote presentation. Tickets are $40 pp or $300 for a corporate table of 8. Register today online at February26rsvp@gmail.com or by calling 407-481-2289. No Florida property owner should miss this event!
*** THANK YOU! This special event has been sponsored by ACQUISITION CONSULTANTS (http://www.accommercial.com/). ***
Reader responses welcomed! Carolsaviak@aol.comCarol Saviak Executive Director Coalition for Property Rights 407-481-2289 407-481-0834 fax www.proprights.com