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2019 Texas REALTORS® Legislative Priorities

Annexation
The association believes that forced annexation is un-Texan and that property owners deserve the right to have a say in whether or not their property is annexed.

County Rulemaking Authority
The association opposes the wholesale expansion of county rulemaking authority.

Eminent Domain
The association understands the need for legitimate property condemnations; however, landowners should be justly and timely compensated.

Home Equity: Mortgage Finance
The association supports updating Texas Tax Code statue to reflect the constitutional amendments approved by 86% of voters in 2017 (Proposition 2) to allow home equity loans on agriculture property. 

Homeowners Associations (HOAs)
The association supports the Legislature’s continuing effort to reform HOA laws to ensure HOA operations are transparent and consumer-friendly as well as seek appropriate balance between private-property rights and community standards while keeping intact property owners’ First Amendment rights. 

Infrastructure: Transportation
The association believes the state of Texas must ensure its citizens the right to a safe and efficient transportation system. 

Infrastructure: Water
The association supports the development and implementation of a broad range of flood mitigation technologies, such as flood warning systems, improved levies, and innovation in construction techniques. The association also supports a more streamlined permitting process for water projects through the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. 

Local Property Taxes: Appraisal Caps
The association opposes efforts to reduce the property-tax appraisal cap from its current level of 10%. 

Local Property Taxes: Central Appraisal Districts
The association supports more state oversight of central appraisal districts and appraisal review boards; and the repeal of the “estimated property taxes” statement from the appraisal notice of value. The association opposes the creation of government programs that will require property owners to disclose the sales price of real property purchases, the creation of a new financial penalty on property owners who do not divulge the sales price of a real estate transaction to the government, any changes to the “equal and uniform” appraisal laws to ensure property owners are treated fairly during the ad valorem appraisal process, and the election of chief appraisers and appraisal review board members. 

Local Property Taxes: Tax Rate-Setting Process
The association supports various measures to ensure a more transparent and honest conversation occurs at the local level when tax rates are set. 

Property Management: Short-Term Rentals
The association supports legislation declaring that a municipality may not adopt or enforce a local law that expressly or effectively prohibits the use of a property as a short-term rental. 

Sales Price Disclosure
The association opposes all legislative efforts to require the disclosure of sales price information because: sales price is not necessarily a good indicator of taxable value, it’s an unnecessary invasion of privacy and it could pave the way for a new real estate transfer tax in Texas, as most states that require sales price disclosure use it to compare tax liability for the transfer of real estate. 

Sales Tax on Professional Services
The association steadfastly opposes efforts to expand the sales-tax base to include professional services. 

Sales Tax/Transfer Tax on Real Estate
TransactionsThe association has conducted exhaustive, multi-year studies on local property taxes and believes applying sales tax to real estate is a short-sighted and flawed approach to property-tax relief. Reducing property taxes with another tax does not achieve the true property tax reform that our state’s taxpayers deserve. 

Tax Assessment
The association supports repealing or reducing the five-year rollback tax collection imposed when land that has qualified for agricultural appraisal changes use to non-agricultural purpose. 

Texas Real Estate Commission
The association supports legislation that facilitates the administration of the commission and eliminates certain inefficient provisions in the law, when identified. We agree with the Sunset Commission’s recommendations. 

Title Insurance
The association supports the current title insurance consumer protections which ensure competitive rates and comprehensive coverages. 

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