National Issues Weigh Heavy Locally
Last week (May 17-20) the National Association of Home Builders held its annual spring board of directors meetings in Washington, DC. Among the members of the NAHB board are HBA of Greater Springfield past presidents Sam Bradley, Brett Godfrey and Rusty MacLachlan. Following is a “quick hits” summary of some of the most pressing current issues at the national level that have potentially large impact on the local building industry. This summary was provided by Sam Bradley. Watch this space in the coming weeks for additional recaps from Godfrey and MacLachlan, as the three national directors each attend different meetings and sessions to gather the widest array of relevant information for local HBA members. Here is Bradley’s summary of issues:
Key Findings at the 2011 NAHB Spring Board of Directors Meetings
Submitted by Sam Bradley (NAHB Life Director)
Housing Market Outlook showing signs of a slight recovery in Missouri. It is important to note that the Missouri numbers are tainted by data from the St. Louis area (which is struggling more severely), with the southwest Missouri area having a better outlook.
1099 Repeal is a bright star for business owners, meaning that we will not be required to file 1099’s for all expenses exceeding $600. Imagine trying to obtain a W-9 to file 1099’s for your gasoline purchases?!
Raising the Debt Ceiling is certainly the 1200 pound gorilla roaming the halls of Congress. Negotiating the terms to allow the ceiling to be raised will continue to be debated with no compromise in sight. NAHB staff believes that this will be one of the major issues of the 2012 election cycle.
Tax Reforms (especially for corporations) According to NAHB staff, expect big changes in pass-throughs. More to come on that one later…
3.8% Tax on Real Estate contained in the Health Care Reform Bill will likely remain, but it applies only to certain transactions with capital gains.
Mortgage Interest Deduction It is expected that deductions for second home mortgages and mortgages above $500,000 are at very real risk of being eliminated.
BAR & PREP Tests will soon be undergoing revision. No details yet available, but more to come on this…
House Bill 1755 Has been introduced. This bill was written with the help of NAHB and attempts to bring common sense back to community bank lending. A small group of Missouri builders (including Brett Godfrey and Sam Bradley from Springfield) along with an NAHB lobbyist met personally with Senator Claire McCaskill, seeking her support for a similar Senate Bill.
GSE’s There are currently eight bills before Congress to deal with the Government Sponsored Entities (GSEs) such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. None of the current reform bills has the support of NAHB.
EPA/RRP For the first time since President Obama took office, NAHB has been able to meet with the EPA Administrator to discuss the new Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) lead safety requirements for homes built before 1978. The EPA is set to extend these RRP requirements to commercial buildings in the near future.
Top National Housing Issues among members continue to be appraisals and banking regulations.