Washington Report

Advocacy Updates from Washington D.C.

The Washington Report covers legislative and regulatory policy activities, and is compiled by NAR's Government Affairs policy staff. To receive this content via email, subscribe to NAR's Weekly Report newsletter and check the "legislative & regulatory issues" box.

Recent

The EPA that the United States Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Pilot Credit program has announced a newly available “Lead Risk Reduction Pilot Credit.”  Its intent is to reduce adverse health impacts and environmental pollution in buildings through the implementation of improved maintenance and lead-safe work practices, and to provide staff with the necessary information they need to promote lead-safe practices.  It specifically focuses on lead paint in dust, soil, and water.  In order to qualify for the credit, building owners must perform lead hazard screenings and drinking water tests, and use certified renovation firms; it also requires the use of certified lead-free plumbing products.  It is available to U.S. and international applicants. 

NAR President Tom Salomone sent a letter to the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) with concerns about the Federal Housing Administration’s (FHA) recent guidance on calculating student loan payments. The letter thanks HUD and FHA for implementing NAR’s previous ask that monthly obligations be calculated using 1% of the outstanding student loan debt rather than 2%, but also raises the concern that borrowers with income-based repayment plans may be unfairly treated under the new calculation method.

NAR President Tom Salomone sent a letter to the Department of Justice (DOJ) asking for guidance regarding the application of Title III of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) to a business’ website.  A number of demand letters, which include the threat of litigation, have been sent to NAR members alleging that their real estate websites violate the civil rights of individuals with disabilities.  The lack of federal regulation governing website accessibility has encouraged these lawsuits.  NAR members are confused about what is required of real estate websites under the ADA.  NAR urges the DOJ to issue a final rule providing clear guidance as soon as possible.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced that it is drafting a notice of proposed rulemaking on the Know Before You Owe rule, also known as “TRID.”  Since the Know Before You Owe rule went into effect on October 3, 2015, the industry has been working hard to understand and implement the rule which replaced the Good Faith Estimate and the HUD-1 with a Loan Estimate (LE) and a Closing Disclosure (CD).  While the CFPB has provided informal guidance to the industry through webinars and phone calls, NAR has urged the CFPB to provide additional clarification in writing.

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