Town Hall Notes


New Laws 2024 — What You Need to Know for July 1, 2024


The 2024 legislative session was a year of change in the Virginia General Assembly. For those Realtors® who joined NVAR for our Annual Realtors® Lobby Day, they experienced first-hand the legislative process in how bills are then turned into impactful public policy; while visiting the new General Assembly Building to speak with Virginia Delegates and Senators and their dedicated legislative staff.

Check out the 2024 Lobby Day Highlight Video Here

Also in Richmond were many new faces of the Northern Virginian Realtors® delegation and legislative members. This session we saw a proverbial “changing of the guard” as legislative redistricting, retirements, and upsets in elections led to a historic turn-over in the House and Senate. Seventeen of the 40 state senators and 34 of the 100 members of the House were newly elected and serving in their first terms this session.

But what did not change is the hard work, dedication, and advocacy success of the Realtor® Party in Virginia and your government affairs staff at the state and local levels. During the 2024 General Assembly Session, your lobbying team from NVAR and the Virginia Realtors®, along with your Public Policy Committees, stayed extremely busy and proactive in being the voice of real estate in Richmond.

There were 3,594 bills and resolutions introduced during the 2024 session and each piece of legislation was reviewed for impacts, whether intended or not, on the real estate industry and our community. We helped to pass 47 bills that benefit Realtors® and your clients, as well as having worked to amend an additional 27 bills to remove harmful provisions, protecting you and your clients. We also defeated 30 bills that would have been harmful to real estate business and property owners in Virginia.

To say the least, this was a very successful session!  The Statewide Realtor® Agenda, including 16 bills (8 proposals, introduced in both the House and Senate) passed with near unanimous, bipartisan support with a total final passage of 2,167 “yes” votes and only 33 “no” votes!

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, 2024 unless otherwise noted.

If you want to read the full text of the legislation, the bill number provided is a linked to the text of the bill as it is enacted into law.


Alignment of Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act (VRLTA) Servicemember Provision to the Federal Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) allowing for early termination for military personnel (HB 352 / SB 213)

Allows certain military personnel to terminate a rental agreement upon receipt of a stop movement order issued in response to a local, national, or global emergency that is effective for either an indefinite period or for a period of not less than 30 days and that prevents the service member from occupying the leased dwelling unit for a residential purpose. The bill also allows such military personnel to terminate a rental agreement after receiving any permanent change of station order or temporary duty order in excess of three months' duration. Current law allows such termination only for orders requiring a departure of 35 miles or more from the dwelling unit. The bill contains an emergency clause and is effective immediately.

Prohibit Localities from Establishing Real Estate Disclosures (HB 467 / SB 354)

Prohibits localities from establishing or enforcing a mandatory disclosure requirement for a real estate licensee, any party to a contract for the sale or listing of residential real property, or any authorized agent of such party. This law will reserve the right to create and enforce disclosures exclusively to the state. The bill provides that prohibited mandatory disclosures include mandatory notifications in contracts, contract amendments or addenda, advertising, other promotional materials, and subsequent deeds after the initial deed is recorded, related to the sale of residential real estate.

Resale Disclosure Act Changes (HB 876 / SB 526)

This bill makes numerous changes related to the Resale Disclosure Act and the Resale Certificate to address issues identified since passage of the Act in 2023. 

  • Clarifies that a seller or the seller’s agent may request the resale certificate from an association.
  • Clarifies that certificate may be delivered to the buyer or the buyer’s agent.
  • Clarifies that the resale certificate must be requested and delivered and that this requirement cannot be waived or changed by agreement.
  • Provides that failure to deliver a resale certificate within 14 days deems the resale certificate unavailable.
  • Clarifies the buyer’s right to cancellation by providing that the buyer may cancel the contract within a time period agreed upon by all parties in the ratified real estate contract. If no time period is specified in the contract, then the default review time is 3 days from the date of ratification.
  • Requires a seller to be responsible for all fees associated with the preparation and delivery of the financial update but allows the settlement agent or other requesting party to pay such fees up.

Real Estate Brokers Place of Business (HB 1237 / SB 437)

Defines "place of business" for real estate brokers. The legislation puts the definition for place of business into the state code and clarifies when a place of business triggers the necessity for a branch license. Clarifies that no branch office license is required for (i) a location that the principal broker, or those employed by or affiliated as an independent contractor with the principal broker, does not own, lease, or maintain exclusive access to, maintenance of, and control of, unless it is held out to the public as a location where such persons or entities are regularly engaging in the activities of a real estate broker or salesperson; (ii) a motor vehicle or watercraft; (iii) a place that is solely devoted to advertising real estate matters of a general nature or to making a real estate broker's business name generally known such as a trade show or expo; (iv) a residence, unless it is held out to the public as a location where the principal broker, or those employed by or affiliated as an independent contractor with the principal broker, is regularly engaging in the activities of a real estate broker or salesperson; (v) a post office box, mail drop location, or other similar facility; or (vi) a public location such as a coffee shop or restaurant. Finally, the bill requires any nonresident real estate broker residing in a state that mandates resident real estate brokers of the Commonwealth to maintain a place of business in such mandating state to maintain a place of business in the Commonwealth.

Regulating Wholesaling (HB 917 / SB 358)

Adds to the definition of "real estate broker" any individual or business entity who sells or offers to sell, buys or offers to buy, negotiates, or otherwise deals in real estate contracts, including assignable contracts, on two or more occasions in any 12-month period for compensation or valuable consideration. Previously, wholesalers were not required to be licensed and this law establishes wholesaling as a licensed activity.

Consumer Protection Against Unfair Real Estate Service Agreements (HB 1243 / SB 576)

This bill addresses the so-called “40-year listing agreement” and prohibits this predatory act. Creates the Unfair Real Estate Service Agreement Act to prohibit any real estate service agreement, defined in the bill, that is effective and binding for more than one year from its effective date from (i) purporting to run with the land or bind future owners of interests in the residential real property identified in the service agreement; (ii) allowing the service provider to assign or transfer the right to provide services under the service agreement without notice to and written agreement of all parties to the service agreement; or (iii) purporting to create a lien, encumbrance, or other real property security interest on the residential real property identified in the service agreement.  

Reallocating Real Estate Continuing Education Credits to Increase Professionalism (HB 383 / SB 330)

Increases from 8 to 11 the number of hours of continuing education an applicant for relicensure as a real estate broker or salesperson shall complete in the topics of ethics and standards of conduct, fair housing, legal updates and emerging trends, real estate agency, and real estate contracts. Decreases from 8 to 5 the number of hours of general elective courses such applicants shall complete. The bill directs the Real Estate Board to adopt regulations to implement the provisions of the bill against current licensees beginning in such licensee's next full renewal cycle following the effective date of such regulations.

Right to Rent for 30 Days or Longer (HB 634 / SB 308)

Prohibits a locality from enacting or enforcing an ordinance that bans the rental of residential dwelling units for 30 consecutive days or longer. The bill allows a locality by ordinance to regulate such rental if such regulations (i) are reasonable and (ii) do not exceed the requirements for an owner-occupied residential property or a residential property rented for a lease term of 12 months or more in the same zoning district. (Note that this does not impact short-term rentals)


Virginia Residential Landlord & Tenant Act (VRLTA) / Property Management

Amendments To Amount Due and Subsequent Filings for Unlawful Detainer (HB 86)

Specifies a process by which a plaintiff, plaintiff's attorney, or agent in an unlawful detainer action may amend the amount due to him in an unlawful detainer action. The bill further provides that if such an amendment is permitted the plaintiff shall not subsequently file additional warrants in debt against the defendant for additional amounts if those amounts could have been included in such amended amount. The bill provides that if the plaintiff requests all amounts due and owing as of the date of the hearing or if the court grants an amendment of the amounts requested, the plaintiff shall not subsequently file additional unlawful detainers or warrants in debt against the defendant for such additional amounts if those amounts could have been included in the amended amount.

Extending the Virginia Eviction Diversion Pilot Program (HB 477 / SB 50)

Extends the expiration of the Eviction Diversion Pilot Program to July 1, 2025. Currently, the Program is set to expire on July 1, 2024.

Resident’s Rights in Manufactured/Mobile Home Parks (HB 572 / SB 232)

Provides that a rental agreement with a term of one year or more will not be automatically renewed if the tenant notifies the landlord in writing 60 days prior to the expiration date of such tenant's intent to not renew the agreement. The bill permits a tenant to not renew a rental agreement due to a change in terms of the agreement by the landlord if such tenant notifies the landlord of his intent to not renew the rental agreement within 30 days of receiving the notice of the change in terms. The bill allows a landlord to include in a written rental agreement a late fee, not to exceed 10 percent of the amount of the rent due and owed, for unpaid rental payments. The bill removes the right of a tenant or landlord to terminate a rental agreement with a term of 60 days or more by written notice at least 60 days prior to the termination date of the agreement.

Routine Maintenance Notice to Tenant (HB 701)

Requires landlords to include in the tenant's notice of routine maintenance the last date on which such maintenance may possibly be performed. The bill also requires landlords to perform routine maintenance within 14 days of delivering such notice to the tenant.

Early Termination of Rental Agreement for Victims of Sexual Assault (HB 764)

Provides that a tenant who is a victim of family abuse, sexual abuse, or other criminal sexual assault may terminate such tenant's obligations under a rental agreement if the tenant has obtained a permanent protective order and has given proper written notice of termination. Under current law, there must be a family abuse protective order or a conviction before the tenant may terminate such obligations under a rental agreement.

Tenant's Remedies for Exclusion from Dwelling Unit Due to Condemnation (HB 957)

Provides that the landlord shall be liable to the tenant for actual damages and reasonable attorney fees if the tenant gave notice to the landlord during the tenancy that his dwelling unit was in violation of an applicable building code, such violation posed a substantial risk to the health, safety, and welfare of a tenant, and such violation resulted in the tenant being excluded from his dwelling unit due to such unit being condemned. The bill includes exceptions to such liability, including negligence by the tenant, an act of God, and termination due to certain fire damage.

VRLTA Fee Disclosure Statement (HB 967 / SB 405)

Requires landlords subject to the Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act to include on the first page of a written rental agreement, a description of any rent and fees to be charged to the tenant. The bill requires that such rental agreement also contain the following disclaimer: “No fee shall be collected unless it is listed below or incorporated into this agreement by way of a separate addendum after execution of this rental agreement.”

Requirement to Provide Copy of Rental Agreement for Tenant (HB 1272)

Requires a landlord to provide a copy of the signed written rental agreement to the tenant within 10 business days of the effective date of the rental agreement. Provides that the landlord shall provide the tenant with an additional hard copy of such tenant's rental agreement once per year upon request or shall maintain such rental agreement in an electronic format that can be easily accessed by or shared with the tenant upon request. Any additional electronic copy of a tenant's rental agreement provided pursuant to this subsection shall be provided by the landlord at no charge to the tenant.

Notice of Sale and Relocation Expenses under Manufactured Home Lot Rental Act (HB 1397)

Increases from $2,500 to $5,000 the relocation expenses a landlord shall provide to a manufactured home owner if a rental agreement is terminated due to the sale of the manufactured home park to a buyer that is going to redevelop the park and change its use. 

Unlawful Detainer Action—Emergency Hearings (HB 1482)

Provides for an emergency hearing to occur on a summons for unlawful detainer filed by an owner of a residential single family dwelling unit if the court finds based upon the evidence that (i) no rental agreement exists or has ever existed between the owner and the occupant; (ii) the occupant occupies such dwelling unit without permission of such owner; and (iii) the owner has given such occupant a written notice to vacate such dwelling unit at least 72 hours prior to the date of filing. Under the bill, an emergency hearing on such summons shall occur as soon as practicable, but not more than 14 days from the date of filing.

Real Estate Licensing and Practice

Neighboring State Reciprocity for Real Estate and Other DPOR Professionals (SB 554)

Requires the Real Estate Appraiser Board and the Real Estate Board, among others, upon application, to recognize current and valid licenses or certificates issued by a neighboring state, defined in the bill, as fulfillment of qualifications for licensure in the Commonwealth if there are no pending investigations or complaints, no disqualifying criminal records, and no discipline imposed by another state.


Common Interest Communities (Condos, POAs, Coops)

Resale Certificate Fees (HB 105)

Adds condominium associations and real estate cooperative associations to the types of associations under the Resale Disclosure Act that are prohibited from collecting certain fees unless, in addition to other requirements, such associations are current in filing the most recent annual report and fee with the Common Interest Community Board.

Common Interest Community Residents Providing Certain Services Exemption (HB 214)

Provides that a resident of a common interest community association who provides bookkeeping, billing, or recordkeeping services for such community for compensation shall be presumed to be an independent contractor. The bill also exempts common interest community associations from the definition of "employer" where a resident provides such services.

Property Owners' Association Act Meetings of the Board of Directors (HB 723)

Provides that the provisions of the Property Owners' Association Act govern the conduct of meetings of the board of the directors without regard to whether the property owners' association is incorporated or unincorporated. The bill clarifies that such provisions shall not be interpreted to supersede corporate authorities otherwise established by law or governing documents.

Common Interest Communities Foreclosure Remedy (HB 880 and SB 341)

Prohibits certain bills to enforce a lien from being entertained if the real estate is the judgment debtor's primary residence and the judgment is for assessments levied by certain common interest community associations if the amount secured by one or more judgments exclusive of interest and costs does not exceed $5,000. The bill also requires such common interest community associations to maintain individual assessment account records. Finally, the bill requires such associations to maintain records of any recorded lien during the effective duration of such lien.

Reserve Studies and Special Assessments in Common Interest Communities (HB 1209)

Removes certain provisions of the Property Owners' Association Act and the Virginia Condominium Act that authorize associations governed by such Acts to rescind or reduce certain assessments necessary for the maintenance and upkeep of the common area or other association responsibilities, including maintenance, repair, and replacement of capital components. The bill also authorizes such associations to borrow money for certain purposes and assign all revenues to be received by such association to its creditors. Provides that the board shall have the discretion to meet repair and replacement requirements through replacement reserves, additional assessments, or borrowed funds. Finally, the bill defines the term "reserve study" as a capital budget planning tool used to determine the physical status and estimated repair or replacement cost of capital components and an analysis of association funding capacity to maintain, repair, and replace capital components.

Assessments for Legal Obligations of Associations (SB 672)

Clarifies that neither the Property Owners' Association Act or the Virginia Condominium Act shall be construed to prevent any association from levying or using assessments, charges, or fees to pay the association's contractual or other legal obligations in the exercise of the association's duties and responsibilities. The bill also restricts such associations from imposing charges against one or more but less than all unit owners unless otherwise specifically authorized by the Acts. Current law prohibits such charges or assessments from being imposed upon any unit or lot owner unless otherwise specifically authorized by the Acts.


Real Estate Sales, Finance and Taxation

Affidavit Required for Subordinate Mortgage in Foreclosure Sale (HB 184)

Provides that, when a foreclosure sale is initiated due to a default in payment of a subordinate security instrument, such subordinate mortgage lienholder shall submit to the trustee an affidavit affirming whether monthly statements were sent to a property owner for each period of assessed interest, fees, or other charges and to include in such affidavit an itemized list of the current amount owed. The bill also requires that any purchaser at a foreclosure sale pay off any priority security instrument no later than 90 days from the date that the trustee's deed conveying the property is recorded in the land records, and, if such purchaser fails to pay, the person originally required to pay such instrument has the right to petition the circuit court of the city or county where the property is located to recover from such purchaser any payments made on such instrument after the date of the foreclosure sale, plus any attorney fees and costs.

Real Property Tax Exemption for Spouses of Soldiers Who Died in the Line of Duty (HB 558 / SB 4)

Creates a voter referendum at the November 5, 2024, election to approve or reject an amendment to the Constitution of Virginia that would expand the real property tax exemption that is currently available to the surviving spouses of soldiers killed in action to be available to the surviving spouses of soldiers who died in the line of duty with a Line of Duty determination from the U.S. Department of Defense. Effective January 1, 2025 upon approval of voters.

Recordation Tax on Value of Interest Conveyed (HB 574)

Provides that for purposes of recordation taxes, the value of a property interest conveyed shall be the most recent property tax assessment for such property at the time the property is conveyed.

Notice of Assessment Changes For Real Property Tax (HB 639 / SB 677)

Provides that in any county, city, or town that conducts an annual or biennial reassessment of real estate or in which reassessment of real estate is conducted primarily by employees of the county, city, or town under direction of the commissioner of the revenue, in the event that the total assessed value of real property would result in an increase of 1% or more in the total real property tax levied, the notice of assessment changes shall state the tax rate that would levy the same amount of real estate tax as the previous year when multiplied by the new total assessed value of real estate. 

Tax Incentives in Local Historic Districts (HB 914)

Allows a locality that establishes a local historic district to provide tax incentives for the conservation and renovation of historic structures in such district. The bill provides that such incentives may include tax rebates to the extent allowed by the Constitution of Virginia.

Increase the Maximum Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit (HB 960 / SB 556)

Increases from $5 million to $7.5 million, beginning in taxable year 2025, the maximum amount of the historic rehabilitation tax credit, including amounts carried over from prior taxable years, that may be claimed by a taxpayer in any taxable year.

Tax Credit for Landlords Participating in Housing Choice Voucher Program (HB 1203)

Extends the expiration date for the tax credit program from January 1, 2025, to January 1, 2026.  Increases from $250,000 to $500,000 the maximum amount of tax credits that may be issued to participating landlords, and provides that, in the event that the amount of the qualified requests for tax credits for such participating landlords in the fiscal year exceeds $500,000, the Department of Housing and Community Development will prorate the tax credits among the qualified applicants. Expands the program to include housing providers in "eligible non-metropolitan census tract" which means a census tract in Virginia that (i) is not in the Richmond Metropolitan Statistical Area, the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria Metropolitan Statistical Area, or the Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News Metropolitan Area and (ii) in which less than 40 percent of the residents live below the poverty level, as defined by the United States government and determined by the most recent United States census.

Planning, Zoning and Other Local Ordinances

Historic Preservation (HB 1395)

Provides that the filing of a building permit or demolition application shall stay a locality from issuing any permit to raze or demolish a historic landmark, building, or structure until 30 days after the rendering of the final decision of the governing body of the locality pursuant to a historic preservation ordinance.

Civil Penalty for Demolition of Historic Structures (HB 1415)

Authorizes any locality to adopt an ordinance establishing a civil penalty for the razing, demolition, or moving of a building or structure that is located in a historic district or that has been designated by a governing body as a historic structure or landmark in violation of an ordinance that no such building or structure shall be razed, demolished, or moved without the approval of a review board. The bill provides that such civil penalty shall not exceed twice the market value of the property as determined by the assessed value of the property at the time of razing, demolition, or moving of the building or structure.

Localities May Not Prohibit Lessees from Operating a Short-Term Rental (HB 1461)

Prohibits a locality from barring an operator, as defined in existing law, from offering such property as a short-term rental solely on the basis that the operator is a lessee or sublessee of such property, provided that the property owner has granted permission for its use as a short-term rental. The bill adds an attestation that the property owner has granted such permission if the operator is a lessee or sublessee to the information that an operator must provide to annually register such short-term rental. The bill permits a locality to limit a lessee or sublessee to one short-term rental.

Localities May Not Prohibit Short-Term Rentals (SB 544)

Prohibits a locality from barring the use of or requiring that a special exception, special use, or conditional use permit be obtained for the use of a residential dwelling as a short-term rental where the dwelling unit is also legally occupied by the property owner as a primary residence. Applies only to local ordinances enacted after December 31, 2023. (Nothing in this section shall be construed to supersede or limit contracts, declarations, or covenants of Condos or POAs)

Vacant Building Registration (HB 1486 / SB 48)

Allows any county, city, or town to require, by ordinance, the owner of any building that has been vacant for at least 12 months and (i) that meets the definition of "derelict building" or "criminal blight" in relevant law, or (iii) in which a locality has determined a person is living without the authority of the owner; to register such building annually.

Local Planning Commission Required Action on Residential Proposed Development (SB 296)

Requires local planning commissions to use the same approval process for residential development projects as is currently required for commercial development projects including acting on the proposal within 60 days of submission; acting in good faith to identify, to the greatest extent practicable, all deficiencies, if any, with the initial submission; to act on a previously disapproved proposal within 45 days of modification; and other provisions.

Vested Rights under Issued Building Permits (SB 701)

Provides that if a locality has issued a building permit, despite nonconformance with the zoning ordinance, and a property owner, relying in good faith on the issuance of the building permit, incurs extensive obligations or substantial expenses in diligent pursuit of a building project that is in conformance with the building permit and the Uniform Statewide Building Code, the locality shall not treat such building as an illegal use but rather as a legal nonconforming use. Current law requires that such project be completed and a certificate of occupancy issued in order to receive such protection.



Address Confidentiality Program for Victims of Child Abduction (HB 1146)

Expands to victims of child abduction eligibility for the Address Confidentiality Program established by the Statewide Facilitator for Victims of Domestic Violence.

Virginia Consumer Protection Act—Mold Remediation (HB 1270)

Makes it a violation of the Virginia Consumer Protection Act to sell or offer for sale services as a professional mold remediator to be performed upon any residential dwelling without holding a mold remediation certification from the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC).

Conversion of Manufactured Home to Real Property (HB 1538)

Establishes a process whereby a manufactured home owner who is not listed as the owner of such manufactured home on its title may detitle such manufactured home in order to convert the home to real property.

Virginia Residential Development Infrastructure Fund (SB 489)

Directs the Department of Housing and Community Development to convene a work group to assess the feasibility of and options for establishing a Virginia residential development infrastructure fund. The bill directs the work group to submit a report of its assessment to the General Assembly no later than the first day of the 2025 Regular Session.

Recordation of Name Changes on Property and Conveyances (SB 598)

Provides that any name change made in relation to a person's marriage or divorce is entitled to be recorded in the clerk's office in which deeds are recorded of the county or city in which any land or interest in any land that is owned by such person lies. Current law only entitles the name change of a woman made in relation to marriage or divorce to be so recorded.

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