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9.25.17 National Flood Insurance Program Receives 3-Month Extension

 

Recently, an NAR Call for Action went out encouraging REALTORS® to urge their members of Congress to support the reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program, a federal program that keeps flood insurance affordable for thousands of homeowners including many on the North Shore.

In support of the national campaign, NSAR sent out a follow up support CFA message reiterating the importance of the issue and urging NSAR members to respond.

As a result of these and other lobbying efforts by NAR, Congress has extended the program until December 8, 2017 allowing flood damage coverage to remain in place for many homeowners.

NAR will continue its efforts in working to achieve permanent status for the NFIP, providing affected homeowners with a long-term solution.

https://www.nar.realtor/articles/national-flood-insurance-program-nfip-extended

 

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9.5.17 Lawmakers Propose Easing 40R Approval

The legislature is currently considering a measure that would make it easier for Massachusetts communities to approve smart growth overlay districts as part of their overall housing production plan.

40R smart growth districts allow for greater density which can result in an increase in a community's affordable housing stock. Chapter 40R provides economic incentives to communities that choose to adopt the zoning provision.

Currently, a two-thirds vote is required for approval of a smart growth overlay district. The proposed bill would reduce the required vote to a simple majority.

Read more in this article from the Lowell Sun.

 

 

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7.12.17 Changes to Closing Disclosure Procedures Approved By CFPB

The federal government's Consumer Protection Financial Bureau has ruled that REALTORS® and other third parties may now have access to the closing document information from lenders prior to closing. This ruling reverts back to the practice prior to the changes made by the CFPB two years ago when REALTORS® were commonly privy to closing details.

 This change may very well prevent errors that have cropped up because of the inability of REALTORS® to review the documents prior to closing.

Read more in this NAR REATLOR® Magazine article.

 

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7.12.17 Merrimack Valley Housing Plan in Works

The Merrimack Valley Planning Commission is embarking on a unique project to create the first Regional Housing Plan for the Merrimack Valley.

A Haverhill Community Housing Needs Workshop will be held on Tuesday, July 18 at 7 pm, and the public is welcome to participate in a discussion on housing needs in Haverhill. The workshop will include an overview of local demographics, the City's existing housing scenario, and an interactive discussion of the community's current and future housing needs. The one-hour workshop will take place at Haverhill High School located at 137 Monument Street.

 The MVPC is also hosting an ongoing, online conversation. To participate and add your ideas, please visit the MV Housing Website .

In addition, on Wednesday, September 27 at 6 pm The MVPC is hosting Regional Open House Events throughout the region. The next Regional Open House is at the Barking Dog Ale House in Haverhill. To RSVP for the event, and learn about this project, please visit MVPC's Regional Housing webpage.

 

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7.7.17 Room Occupancy Tax Kept Out of Budget

The Massachusetts House & Senate have agreed not to inlcude a room occupancy tax or CPA fee increase in the FY2018 budget. This is welcome news to home owners who would be faced with paying the new tax as a result of providing short-term rental space to guests. Read Boston Globe article for more info.

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6.15.17 Successful REALTOR® Day on Beacon Hill

REALTORS meet at Day on the Hill

Over 400 REALTORS® from across the state assembled at the State House yesterday to meet with their respective legislators and discuss pending real estate-related legislative issues. The morning meeting, which took place in the Great Hall, featured remarks from Senator Karen Spilka of Ashland who stated that she welcomes the input of REALTORS® on the issues being considered by the legislature.

Immediately after the morning meeting, the REALTORS® headed out to keep their appointments with members of the House and Senate to further express their concerns on behalf of home owners and buyers.

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