Our Legislative Agenda
Michigan Realtors® are united around a plan to increase housing availability and affordability that supports the people of our state.
SUPPLY MICHIGAN HOUSING
Increase housing supply through local zoning reforms. SUPPORT HB 4246
There is a critical lack of housing supply across Michigan. We need legislation to encourage government rule changes that have prevented housing development. Zoning reforms that should be considered are reductions in lot and home sizes, smaller set back requirements, elimination of height restrictions, and by-right development, among others.
Protecting the independent contractor status of Realtors®. OPPOSE HB 4390.
Becoming a Realtor® is an attractive occupation for many that want to build their own business and reputation, set their own hours, and not be tied to an office. The independent contractor relationship between a broker and an agent is specifically recognized by the IRS and state statute. This should be recognized as an exception to the proposed “ABC Test.”
Increase splits allowed under the Michigan Land Division Act.
We can promote density by providing the opportunity to create more lots by increasing the current 4 divisions per first 10 acres, to 20. In addition, we can allow municipalities to approve further divisions to lower the cost of development.
Require 1 hour of fair housing continuing education per year for real estate licensees.
Real estate licensees should continue to lead on fair housing. Michigan needs to establish a 1-hour annual fair housing education requirement for all licensees, within the current 18 hours of continuing education.
End predatory right-to-sell agreements.
We need to protect the public by ending the current practice of providing cash up front to a homeowner in exchange for the ability to list their home, often resulting in an unexpected 40-year lien on the property.
Promote the use of post-closing occupancy agreements.
Creation of a state-wide septic code. SUPPORT HB 4479 and HB 4480
Protecting Michigan’s water and private property rights can be accomplished together. We need to end the patchwork of regulation that has allowed septic pollution in Michigan’s water by creating uniformity in the definition of inspections, timing of inspections, classification of failure, and allowance for alternative systems. Phasing out punitive time of sale or transfer mandates allows for better land use and supports more housing availability.
Regulation of short-term rentals.
Short-term rentals are part of Michigan’s housing ecosystem and a generations-long tradition. Any regulation of short-term rentals at the state level should start with amending the Zoning Enabling Act to protect a homeowner’s ability to rent. Regulation of nuisances, registration, and inspections should be preserved and done through local housing codes.
Ending Michigan administrative rules ‘not more strict’ than federal standards. OPPOSE SB 14
Regulatory standards help protect our environment and natural resources, but excessive rule making can hinder housing development and encumber the operations of a small business. Michigan’s state departments should not be able to pass rules that exceed state law and the federal standards.
Drain code changes for stormwater utilities. OPPOSE HB 4382 and HB 4383
Giving a drain commissioner the ability to create a water management board to regulate rainwater and flow creates a new and permanent form of governance. Costly assessments could be made on taxpayers without their direct approval and without a guarantee that infrastructure will be built or drainage will improve.
Adding source of income as a protected class. OPPOSED AS INTRODUCED to HB 4062 and HB 4063 and SB 205 – SB 207
Housing Choice Vouchers and other rental assistance is vital to getting people into housing and starting on the path to homeownership. However, these are voluntary programs because they require a third party to the lease and significant rules and procedures. We encourage the adoption of Michigan Realtors® suggested amendments that would provide certainty to income verification and timelines, clarify that it does not apply to sales, and allow mom and pop landlords to opt-in to those programs.