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Tax reform is an ‘all-out assault on homeownership’…it’s time to act!

Ohio REALTOR Board vs. Board

By Pete Kopf, Ohio REALTORS President

The REALTOR community’s most important “Call For Action” is at a critical stage — as the profession is currently focusing its attention on the Senate to keep incentives to homeownership in the “tax reform” package. It’s imperative that Ohio Senators Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman hear from every REALTOR in the Buckeye State!

Last week the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1, the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act,” a bill National Association of REALTORS President Elizabeth Mendenhall called an all-out assault on homeownership. The Senate is now looking to pass a measure in the next few weeks that one national columnist, Kenneth Harney, says is even worse for homeowners. Specifically, Harney notes:

“Deductions of state and local property taxes, sales taxes and income taxes — the so-called SALT write-offs heavily used by homeowners — take a heavy hit. The House bill would limit SALT deductions to $10,000 in property taxes. Currently there is no dollar limit, and income and sales taxes can be included. The Senate bill would kill the deduction. For owners in high-tax markets such as Virginia, California, New York, the New England states plus Illinois and Ohio, that could raise federal tax bills.

“The Senate bill would also make a major change in one of the most valuable tax benefits for homeowners — the ability to pocket tax-free capital gains on home sales. Sellers now filing jointly can ‘exclude’ up to $500,000 of gains, provided they have used the property as their principal residence for two years out of five. That’s a big deal for many sellers, especially seniors who need the money for retirement.”

Fortunately, a record number of Ohio REALTORS have already made their voice heard — as we’ve topped 22 percent participation in the “Call for Action” as of today. While this is great and helps us meet our national goal — that leaves plenty of room for improvement. If you haven’t acted…now’s the time!

I would like to extend my personal gratitude the following 18 local Boards/Associations that have surpassed their 20 percent participation goal: Ashland, Coshocton, Delaware County, East Central, Guernsey-Muskingum Valley, Heartland, Knox County, Lake & Geauga Area, Licking County, Marietta, Marion, Midwestern Ohio, Portage County, Springfield, Stark County, Toledo Regional, Wayne-Holmes, and West Central.

Other notable highlights:

  • Ohio’s current participation on 22.17 percent trails that of our peers from Michigan (24.64 percent). It’s “Beat Michigan” week…let’s get to work Buckeyes!
  • Our current category leaders in the Ohio “Board vs. Board” competition include a new #1, with the Stark County Board jumping to the top spot in the “Large Board” category. Other leaders include: “Small Board” pace-setter Ashland Board with a remarkable participation rate of 96.61 percent, Licking County topping the “Medium Board” category, and Toledo Regional Association leading the “Metro Boards.” Here are the current Ohio “Board vs. Board” standings:

Metro Boards (1,200+ members)

  1. Toledo Regional Association — 28.17%
  2. Columbus REALTORS — 17.01%
  3. Cincinnati Area Board — 16.71%
  4. Akron Cleveland Association — 14.97%
  5. Dayton REALTORS — 14.94%

Large Board (450-1,199 members)

  1. Stark County Association — 24.08%
  2. Lake-Geauga Area Association — 22.9%
  3. Butler-Warren Association — 18.58%
  4. Medina County Board — 17.34%
  5. Firelands Association — 16.95%
  6. Youngstown Columbiana Association — 12.97%

Medium Boards (200-449 members)

  1. Licking County Board — 34.43%
  2. East Central Association — 28.48%
  3. Wayne-Holmes Association — 21.74%
  4. Midwestern Ohio Association — 26.69%
  5. Portage County Association — 26.14%
  6. Springfield Board — 25.81%
  7. Guernsey-Muskingum Valley Association — 22.03%
  8. West Central Association — 21.6%
  9. Lorain County Board — 14.43%
  10. Scioto Valley Association — 16.38%
  11. Northwestern Ohio Board — 16.36%
  12. Warren Area Board — 14.83%
  13. Lancaster Board — 14.52%
  14. Southern Ohio Association — 14.06%
  15. Mansfield Association — 11.05%

Small Boards (under 200 members)

  1. Ashland Board — 96.61% (57 of 59 members have responded!!!)
  2. Marietta Board — 50%
  3. Coshocton County Board — 44.83%
  4. Knox County Board — 30.95%
  5. Heartland Board — 26.19%
  6. Marion Board — 25.81%
  7. Delaware County Board — 22,86%
  8. Ashtabula County Board — 18.06%
  9. Beaver Creek Area Association — 16.67%
  10. Highland County Board — 16.39%
  11. Greater Portsmouth Area — 14.49%
  12. Athens County Board — 13.46%
  13. Clinton County Board — 12%

Help your Board/Association! Help middle class homeowners! Help save the American Dream! Make your voice heard by clicking here!

Tags: Association news, politics