Town Hall Notes


New Laws 2022 – What You Need to Know for July 1


The 2022 General Assembly Session was an incredibly positive and productive session for the Realtors®. The State Realtor® Agenda passed with nearly unanimous support with a total final passage of 1,386 “yes” votes to 4 no “votes”!! 

Your State and Local Realtor® Government Affairs team examined every piece of legislation (that’s 3,134 bills and resolutions!) to determine if it impacted you, your clients, and/or your business. Out of those, the Virginia REALTORS® Public Policy Committee (PPC) reviewed 286 pieces of legislation and took a position to support, amend, oppose, or monitor each of those bills. 

The following legislation are those bills we have selected as having an impact on your business.  Each of these new laws is effective July 1, 2022 unless otherwise noted. 

Taxes; appeal of local assessments - HB 226 (Coyner) Clarifies the procedure by which a taxpayer disagreeing with the local tax assessment may seek relief by providing that (1) the parties in such a proceeding shall be the taxpayer and the locality; (2) the taxpayer may show that the property was assessed at more or less than its fair market value; and (3) the county or city attorney, or attorney for the Commonwealth if there is no county or city attorney, shall defend the locality in any proceeding. 

Local Land Use Approvals - HB 272 (Murphy) and SB 501 (Lewis) Extends from July 1, 2022 to July 1, 2023, the sunset date for any recorded plat or final site plan that were valid and outstanding as of July 1. 2020.  A locality may extend that timeframe. Any other plan or permit associated with such plat or site plan extended by this subsection is similarly extended for the same time period. 

Real Property; Duty To Disclose Ownership Interest And Pending Litigation - HB 281 (Coyner) Provides that if a real estate licensee knows, or should have known, that he, anyone in his family, firm, or entity in which he has an ownership interest is attempting to acquire, sell or lease a property and the licensee is a party to the transaction, the licensee must disclose in writing that he is a licensee and that any of these entities has an ownership interest in the property.  The disclosure must be made to the purchaser, seller, lessor, or lessee upon having substantive discussion and the specific real property.  The legislation also requires a seller who has actual knowledge of a pending lawsuit (lis pendens) against a dwelling, to provide written disclosure to a prospective purchaser. The disclosure shall be provided on a form provided by the Real Estate Board on its website. This legislation was introduced on behalf of the Virginia Realtors®. 

Real Estate Appraiser Board – HB 284 (Coyner) Has a delayed effective date to July 1, 2023 and provides an opportunity for public comment. Provides that the Real Estate Appraiser Board shall promulgate regulations requiring at least two hours of fair housing or appraisal bias courses as a prerequisite to license renewal.  

Land Bank Disposition – HB 298 (Rasoul) Authorizes localities to, in lieu of a sale at public auction, convey certain real estate having delinquent taxes or liens to the locality’s landbank entity or an existing nonprofit entity designated by the locality to carry out the duties of a land bank.  Currently, the real estate may be conveyed only to the locality itself.  The bill also allows real estate that contains a derelict building and has delinquent taxes and liens exceeding 25 percent of its assessed value to be conveyed to the land bank. The land bank or nonprofit must pay any surplusage above the amount of unpaid taxes or liens to the former owners or other parties with an interest in the property.  

Affordable Housing; Fair Market Value – HB 400 (Willett) Includes the Rental Assistance Demonstration program in the list of federal laws whose restrictions shall be considered in determining the fair market value of real property that is operated as affordable rental housing. 

High-speed Broadband Service To New Residential And Commercial Development – HB 445 (Murphy) and SB 446 (Boysko) Provides that the Dept of Housing and Community Development shall convene a stakeholder advisory group to evaluate local and state policies and ordinance to facilitate the expansion of high-speed broadband and make recommendations no later than September 30, 2022. 

Common Interest Communities; Prohibition On Refusal To Recognize A Licensed Real Estate Broker - HB 470 (Bulova) and SB 197 (Mason) Requires that CICs recognize a real estate licensee’s right to represent a client for certain association matters with written consent; clarifies that a third-party vendor delivering CIC packets for an association are under the same 14-day delivery laws as the association itself.  This was a Realtor® requested bill. 

Residential Property Disclosure Act - HB 702 (Keam) Adds to the Virginia Residential Property Disclosure a provision that the owner makes no representation with respect to current lot lines or the ability to expand, improve or add any structures on the property; purchasers are advised to exercise due diligence including obtaining a property survey and contacting the locality to determine zoning ordinances or lot coverage, height, or setback requirements on the property. 

Realtor® Group Health Plan - HB 768 (Hodges) and SB 335 (Barker) This legislation allows the Virginia Association of Realtors® to begin the process of meeting with insurance companies to seek an insurance plan that may be offered to members of the Association. Federal law does not allow self-employed individuals to access coverage through large group health plans so the effort was to fashion a finely crafted state law applying to Realtors® only. After several years of lobbying, the legislation was both passed by the legislature and signed by the Governor.  This was a Realtor® requested bill. 

Property Taxes For Property Owned By Certain Surviving Military Spouses - HB 957 (Tran) Beginning with the year 2022, localities may establish a separate class of property and tax rate for property owned by a surviving spouse of a member of the Armed Forces of the U.S. who died in the line of duty with a line of duty determination from the U.S. Dept of Defense, where such death was not the result of criminal conduct, and where the spouse occupies the real property as his principal place of residence and does not remarry.  The tax must be greater than zero and may not exceed the rate of tax on general real property. Each locality must pass an ordinance for this purpose. 

Dual Compensation For Mortgage Brokers - HB 1153 (Ware) and SB 303 (Deeds) Removes the current prohibition on a person from acting as a mortgage broker in connection with any real estate sales transaction in which that person has acted as a real estate broker or real estate salesperson and will received compensation from that transaction. A mortgage broker who negotiates, places of finds a mortgage loan and acts as a real estate broker or salesperson in a transaction must conspicuously provide to the borrower a written disclosure at the time the mortgage broker service is first offered.   

Affordable House Grants - HB 1194 (Carr) Authorizes an industrial development authority to make grants for the construction of affordable housing. 

Summons For Unlawful Detainer; Adverse Employment Actions Prohibited - HB 1236 (Jenkins) Requires any summons for unlawful detainer to include a notice to the tenant that it is unlawful for his employer to discharge him from employment or take any adverse personnel action against him for appearing at an initial or subsequent hearing on such summons, provided he has given reasonable notice of such hearing to his employer. 

Extension of Eviction Diversion Pilot Program - SB 24 (Locke) Extends from July 1, 2023 to July 1, 2024, the expiration date of the Eviction Diversion Pilot Program.   

Virginia Residential Landlord Tenant Act; Child Care Services Provisions In Rental Agreements - SB 69 (Favola) - Allows a rental agreement to contain provisions allowing for the tenant’s operation of properly licensed and authorized child care services. 

Death Or Disability Of A Real Estate Broker - SB 510 (Suetterlein) Has a delayed enactment date of January 1, 2023. Requires a broker who is a sole proprietor or is he only licensed broker in a business to designate another broker to close out the real estate business within 180 days in the event of the death or disability of the broker.  The designation shall be made at the time of his application for a broker license and at the renewal of his license. If the original designated broker is unable or unwilling to close out the business, the Real Estate Board shall grant approval to one of several others, listed in priority.  In the event no listed individual is available or suitable, the Board is required to appoint another broker, with their written consent, within 30 days of receiving written notification of a broker’s death or disability to carry on the business of the deceased or disabled broker for the sole purpose of concluding the business within 180 days. This was a Realtor® requested bill. 

Protection Of Real Estate Escrow Funds - SB 533 (Lewis) Clarifies that, upon the ratification of a contract, an earnest money deposit received by the principal broker or supervising broker, or an agent of such principal or supervising broker, that will be held in the firm’s escrow account shall be placed in such account by the end of the fifth business banking day following ratification, unless otherwise agreed to in writing by the principals to the transaction.  If an earnest money deposit will not be held in the firm’s escrow account, the principal broker or supervising broker shall ensure that the earnest money deposit is delivered to the escrow agent named in the contract by the end of the fifth business banking day following receipt of the deposit, unless otherwise agreed to in writing. This was a Realtor® requested bill. 

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