Tax reform plan would hurt homeowners, REALTORS® tell Sen. Durbin

Illinois REALTORS® met with Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., on Monday to discuss how a proposed tax reform plan would hurt Illinois property owners. REALTORS® Sue Miller and David Hanna represented the association. Photo: Conor Brown

Illinois REALTORS® met with U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin on Monday to tell him how a proposed tax overhaul would hurt homeowners.  

Illinois REALTOR® Sue Miller discusses the impact of a tax reform plan with members of the media at a press conference in Crystal Lake, Ill., on Monday, Nov. 6, 2017. From left are: Heartland REALTOR® Organization CEO Jim Haisler, U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, Miller, McHenry County Board Chair Jack Franks, Homebuilders Association of Illinois Vice President Bill Ward and REALTOR® Dave Hanna. Photo: Conor Brown

REALTORS® Sue Miller and David Hanna told Durbin that as drafted the bill would have huge impact Illinois, which has some of the highest property taxes in the country.

Illinois REALTORS® delegation was introduced by Jim Haisler, CEO of the Heartland REALTOR® Organization.  Illinois REALTORS® Local Government Affairs Director Conor Brown and Bill Ward with the Homebuilders Association of Illinois attended the session.

The current version of the tax plan caps the deduction for property taxes at $10,000, a move that would hurt many in high property tax areas such as McHenry County.  

McHenry County Board Chairman Jack Franks told Durbin that the $10,000 cap would result in a tax hit even for those who own relatively modest homes.   

The National Association of REALTORS has voiced strong opposition to the bill as drafted. While the organization states it is not against tax reform, the way the legislation has been drafted would hurt property owners and decrease home values.  

Among concerns is a mortgage interest deduction limit of $500,000, an amount that is not indexed to inflation. That means the policy’s impact on property owners will continue to worsen over time.  

Other elements of the plan are worrisome, too.

In addition to doing away with the deduction for state and local taxes, mortgage interest deductions for second homes would go away, as would deductions for interest on student loans and medical expenses.  

Media outlets covered a press conference after the meeting in Crystal Lake. Durbin shared his concerns about the tax reform plan.

According to Crain’s Chicago Business, Durbin said

Eliminating or gutting state and local tax deductions will hit Illinois hard—resulting in double taxation for a third of the families in our state.” 


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About Jon Broadbooks

Jon Broadbooks is Vice President/Communications for Illinois REALTORS®. He serves as editor of online and print content for the association’s communications including the Illinois REALTOR® magazine and e-newsletters. He conducts spokesperson training seminars and oversees website development for the Association.

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