Focusing on Federal Policy
Why Focus On Federal Policy?
To Restore Federal Disclosure
Federal policy is not a new concept in housing. In 1968 the federal Fair Housing Act was enacted to prohibit discrimination in the sale, rental and financing of housing. Also in 1968, and because of widespread real estate scams and industry corruption, the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) implemented the Interstate Land Sales Full Disclosure Act to protect consumers from fraud and abuse in the sale or lease of land. The Act was patterned after the Securities Act of 1933 and required land developers to register subdivisions or condominium projects with HUD. The act offered much needed consumer protection at the federal level, but as time went by, the act was long neglected and not enforced. In 2011, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau took over administering the Act. Unfortunately, by 2014, President Obama signed legislation removing all condominium developments from the protection of ILSA.
To Enact Uniform Federal Standards and Oversight
Under the current system, Americans are adversely affected by the hodgepodge of condominium and homeowner association state laws. The varying statutes cause confusion, and lack consistent standards and best practice guidance for association governance. Homeowners and residents have nowhere to turn when faced with sky-high or unexpected special assessments, excessive financial liabilities, or discrimination. Combined with weak or nonexistent oversight of the actual Homeowners Associations or management companies, the lack of cohesive housing policy represents a major national housing problem.
To Provide Equal Protection of Rights
The Federal government needs to implement checks and balances on excessive power and authority of individual states. If we are to be the UNITED States of America, all states must be obligated to provide equal protection under the law for residents of Association-Governed Communities. Additionally, the creation of uniform federal housing policy guidelines is critical to the advancement of affordable, fair housing in this $5 trillion homeowner association industry nationwide.