Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Transfer Fee Bill Ignores Homeowners and Endorses CAI Demands and Fees

You won't be surprised at this but the CAI has managed to get the transfer fee Bill watered down.  They appear to owe many thanks to Senator Balmer whose involvement to favor CAI proposals and property managers over home owner interests is no surprise to our group.  The CAI and their well financed lobbyist from Virginia/Colorado spent much time and money spreading misinformation to salvage $15 million a year in fees assessed on home sellers and into their members pockets.  Thus, this Bill allows property managers to continue to extort transfer fees from home sellers for no other reason or justification other than "it can".  It allows them to use the fee to low bid contracts and use the fee to make up for low bids: very anti-competitive and anti-small business.  It endorses the illegal use of the fee for supplementing income by property management companies.  Note, no reason justifying this fee has been given by the CAI or legislators, NONE, and they don't have to because they can.
HB 14-1254 was stripped of any effectiveness by simply directing the profiteering property managers to document their bogus charges but not to limit them (that will work!).  Yes, a $1,000 transfer fee is still endorsed by the legislature, the Real Estate industry, and DORA.  Worse yet DORA has stuck its' nose in the picture to advocate no restrictions other than to document the fees (this at the apparent request of the CAI).  The involvement of DORA and the Division of Realty is another example of how the CAI and monied interests direct activities of these government agencies.  DORA was not directed to get involved in transfer fees with the licensing of property managers and this action on their part is deplorable.  Don't expect the licensing of property managers to help one home owner at this point as DORA will be directed by the CAI on requirements.
The CAI must support this Bill as they got legislators to re-write it and stick it to home owners.  This is a great example of why citizens can't stand/distrust politicians, lobbyists, and well financed groups.  Now add to that the distrust of government agencies like DORA who take orders from private industry.
The final version of this Bill will most likely be further weakened.  You will hear more about our plans for public hearing testimonies.  No Bill is better than one that advocates unjustified fees and taxes.  Your legislators that are supposedly against fees and taxes should be chastised if they support this Bill in its' current form. 

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