Realtors join forces with statewide tax basis portability effort | TheUnion.com

Realtors join forces with statewide tax basis portability effort

Submitted to The Union

The Nevada County Association of Realtors announced it will shift its local effort to bring a "property tax portability" agreement to Nevada County, and instead will refocus the group's energy on a new move to bring the concept statewide — and make it permanent, according to a news release.

For months, the Nevada County Association of Realtors has been gathering support for a program that would allow seniors the ability to downsize without taking a hit on their property taxes, while freeing up larger housing for young families.

Taking advantage of Proposition 90 — which was passed overwhelmingly by California voters 30 years ago — counties can enter into contracts which allow seniors to take their lower, stable property tax base with them when they move. Locally, the effort was scheduled to go before the Board of Supervisors on Dec. 12.

In October, the California Association of Realtors voted to qualify an initiative for the November 2018 ballot, which will give any California senior the ability to take advantage of the transfer — not just Nevada County.

"It's important because seniors, who are often on a fixed income, fear they will not be able to afford a big property tax increase if they sell their existing home and buy another one, discouraging them from ever moving," a release stated. "As a result of this 'moving penalty' almost three-quarters of homeowners 55 and older haven't moved since 2000."

The California Association of Realtors portability initiative would allow senior homeowners to transfer their property tax base from their current residence to a replacement residence located anywhere in California, the news release states.

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If approved by voters, the measure will let thousands of seniors currently "locked into" their homes by low property tax rates purchase a home that will better suit their needs, while expanding the housing inventory for young families seeking to buy a home. According to the California Legislative Analyst's Office, tens of thousands of additional homeownership opportunities will occur annually.

To qualify for the ballot, the effort must gather more than 500,000 signatures from registered voters over the next several weeks. To support placing the measure on the ballot, visit the Association of Realtors located at 336 Crown Point Circle in Grass Valley, or visit any local Realtor.

Source: Nevada County Association of Realtors