When Presidential Candidates Talk Real Estate

As the presidential nominating process moves into 2016, don’t be surprised if candidates from both parties talk about real estate and the federal issues that affect it. After all, the industry accounts for roughly a fifth of the U.S. economy. It’s too big to ignore.

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Already some of the most important issues impacting real estate, including tax policy changes and secondary mortgage market reform, are on lawmakers’ agenda. Tax policy changes, reform of the secondary mortgage market: these are critical issues that candidates will likely have something to say about, if they haven’t already.

NAR doesn’t get involved in presidential politics, but even so, the association carefully weighs everything candidates say about issues impacting real estate. If a candidate proposes a plan for, say reforming Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, NAR will look at it closely. Same thing if a candidate talks about changing the mortgage interest deduction or other tax provision that affects real estate.

Of course, it will be a long road before any proposal brought up on the campaign trail gets to the legislation stage. Regardless of who becomes president, lawmakers in both the House and the Senate, and on both sides of the aisle, must consider any proposal that gains currency. There will be hearings, drafts, alternative proposals, and votes. NAR will be a big part of the process at this stage, because lawmakers know the association has been working on these issues for years.

NAR Deputy Chief Lobbyist Jamie Gregory talks about the long road to legislation for any proposal that is brought up on the campaign trail in the latest Voice for Real Estate news video. “Candidates are saying what their ideal plans are, but even if try get elected, they can’t do it alone,” Gregory says. “They still have to go to Congress. They have a partner in this process.”

Gregory’s remarks are one of the top segments in the video, which also looks at two research reports NAR just released, one on the value of remodeling projects and the other on households’ attitudes about home ownership. The video looks at two recent legislative wins as well. The first is the association’s success at protecting guarantee fees from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac from being used to offset transportation program costs. The other is the success at getting important tax provisions extended. Among the tax provisions are mortgage debt cancellation relief, which helps households who’ve had mortgage debt forgiven, and 15-year depreciation of leasehold improvements, a commercial priority.

In addition, the video looks at two legal issues. One involves a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision affecting temporary signs; the other looks at the use of images online.

Access the video:

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Robert Freedman

Robert Freedman is director of multimedia communications for the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®. He can be reached at rfreedman@realtors.org.

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  1. As a citizen in this country, I’m not surprised that candidates talks about real estate issues, because it contribute a lot in our economic system. Many investors eyed real estate business in our country and the more investors that we had, real estate will boost its presence in the community.

  2. Critical issues regarding taxes are really needed to be discussed. Hope we will get a concrete plan of action from them. Let us see.

  3. Fred Schneider

    NAR and every person associated with real estate should start out strong by helping ALL property owners in our wonderful country. The HUGE mortgage scandal involving nasty old Bank of America, MERS, FNMA and others was kind of “raked under the coals” after the National Mortgage Settlement where Eric Holder threw up his hands and caved letting all the involved parties off the hook for peanuts while they still conduct business as usual:( This is ALL so very sad and all the politicians, including the ones running now for president, won’t return letters, phone calls, or Emails as they all try to avoid this huge scam to all us American homeowners and quickly turn a deaf ear. Too many Americans have lost their homes to all these scam artists and the Internet is full of thousands of stories about the “great american rip off” with the MERS scandal and all the “robo signing” to try and cover their tracks. We got sold out by the USDOJ and many states. Thank goodness for AG Fox in Montana where the state filed an Amicus Brief in support of the “Morrow Case” in which the Montana Supreme Court shot down nasty old B of A and they then quickly settled in private and with a confidential settlement- too bad the Morrow’ s caved in not standing up for ALL American property owners who have been so badly scammed by B of A, many other big time lenders, MERS, and FNMA- they all have very unclean hands and should all be made to pay for the financial crises they caused with all the securitization of notes and trust deeds and no proper assignments and recordings. I am sure none of the current people running for the office of president would ever want to get involved and actually help all American property owners. In this regard I also feel that NAR has really let all us Realtors and clients down by not being more involved and taking a very aggressive stance in supporting the public and all people in the real estate business- just my humble opinion:(

  4. Even if they do talk about it, don’t expect them to dwell on the topic for long – it’s not “hot” enough for modern politics.

  5. Great speech!

  6. Love the union of Politics and Real Estate!