Top 4 victories REALTORS® accomplished in the spring legislative session

The Illinois General Assembly’s 2014 Spring Session ended Saturday. The session provided several victories for IAR’s members, including:

Broker Price Opinion Changes Would Be Protected in Statute

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Providing property pricing guidance is fundamental to the real estate business. IAR’s members pushed for changes that would protect this valuable service.

SB3044 added language into to state acts to make sure REALTORS® can continue to provide this important service as part of their transactional duties. The changes regarding Broker Price Opinions (SB3044) were unanimously approved by 109 votes in the House and by 56 votes in the Senate late May 30, 2014. The bill now moves on to Gov. Pat Quinn for consideration.

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This bill passed the House and Senate and will be before Gov. Pat Quinn for signature. It limits the amount of money a prospective buyer of a foreclosed condo would pay and provides safeguards there won’t be nasty surprises at closing over what a buyer has to pay.

The bill allows condo associations to collect nine months of unpaid costs and related legal fees, but limits the total recoverable amount to the equivalent of nine months of regular monthly assessments. The bill was the subject of two calls to action, and thousands of IAR members contacted lawmakers to urge passage.

Reorganization of IDFPR Initiated by Gov. Quinn 

IAR had long lobbied for real estate to get more attention within the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. A March 31, 2014, executive order by Gov. Quinn created a Division of Real Estate within IDFPR. This move acknowledges the important role real estate plays in the state’s economy and would allow better enforcement of the rules and regulations that dictate how real estate transactions are handled.

Fire Marshal Pledges to Work with Stakeholders

Illinois Fire Marshal Larry Matkaitis released a statement which sought to defuse a battle over his efforts to force owners of older condo buildings to install costly fire sprinkler systems through an administrative rules process. According to Illinois Observer, he said:

 

“I believe that any new sprinkler mandate should include open and full discussions with all stakeholders. As long as I am Fire Marshal, I intend to work with local government officials, public safety officials, and all stakeholders to pass any new sprinkler laws through the General Assembly.”

The statement comes after a bruising battle last year when Matkaitis attempted to implement rules changes which would have mandated the fire suppression systems in older condo buildings and new homes.

IAR backed a bill (HB4609) filed by State Rep. Sara Feigenholtz this year which sought to force any future changes in the fire codes to go through the full General Assembly rather than go through JCAR. The bill won committee approval, but didn’t make it out of the House.

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