Attend Michigan Realtors® Legislative Day & Centennial Celebration this Wednesday
Michigan Realtors® will be hosting our Legislative Day & Centennial Celebration this Wednesday, March 4th in Lansing. Join us as we celebrate 100 years in the real estate industry (1915-2015). In addition to the scheduled centennial events, this is your opportunity to listen to top state legislative officials speak on a variety of issues not only facing the real estate industry, but the state as a whole. Realtors® who have a keen interest in government and legislative affairs will not want to miss this event.
Pre-registration is now closed, but you may register onsite at the Lansing Center for $45.
View Schedule of Events
For those attending the YPN State Meet Up in downtown Lansing following Legislative Day, you may view our special guests and RSVP online here.
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College Scholarships Available – Application Due July 1st
The Michigan Realtors® Scholarship Trust fund provides scholarships to full-time undergraduate and graduate students who are taking classes that will lead them to a real estate career. Students can receive up to $2000 per year from the fund. Applications are due by July 1, 2015.
Learn More and Apply Today
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8 Powerful RPR Resources You Should be Using in 2015
With the new year comes a fresh start. A new beginning full of new resolutions, ideas, and plans for all that needs to get accomplished. Many Realtors® are asking themselves: How can I grow my business? How can I maximize my time? Am I taking advantage of all the tools I have available to me? How can I better compete in my market? How can I spend more time with loved ones and less time in the office? No matter what your 2015 goals are for your business, RPR can help you achieve them. Here we’ll countdown the 8 powerful resources within RPR that will help you achieve your 2015 goals, regardless of your specialty.
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Great News for Buyer Clients Seeking Transfer Tax Refund!
Do you have a buyer client who paid the transfer tax on a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac property? We have great news to report - A refund mechanism is now available.
By way of background, a 6th Circuit Court of Appeals determined last year that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are federal agencies exempt from State and County real estate transfer taxes. This 6th Circuit ruling overturned a lower court that said Michigan counties could collect such taxes from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
While Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have steadfastly claimed that they remain exempt from all taxes of this nature, both agencies either already utilized or elected to adopt contract addendums to indemnify themselves from any unforeseen taxes on a sale, shifting the potential burden to the buyer during the pendency of the above court proceedings.
For a buyer that paid the transfer tax pursuant to an agreement with Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals decision was slightly less satisfying. While Michigan law provides that a seller is responsible for payment of County and State transfer taxes, a seller can contractually agree to have a buyer assume that obligation. Michigan law also provides for a refund mechanism, available to sellers having paid the tax in error or unnecessarily. The same refund mechanism had not been directly available to buyers having paid the tax – until now.
The Michigan Department of Treasury has posted new instructions for affected buyers to directly apply for refunds on transfers concerning Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
The instructions and the refund form can be accessed here: http://www.michigan.gov/documents/2796f7_2601_7.pdf
The prompt provides:
“For property owners who purchased from Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac: If you are seeking a refund of the SRETT paid on the purchase of the home, complete this form (2796) as if you were the seller of the home. You must attach the following documents with the completed form:
- Copy of your Settlement Statement (HUD-1)
- Copy of your RECORDED DEED containing the tax stamp.”
If you have a client in this situation, you can provide them with the above information and advise them to contact Treasury with any questions. The direct contact for State Real Estate Transfer Tax inquiries is (517) 636-0515.
A similar exemption is available for the County Real Estate Transfer Tax. While Counties may have varying approaches to refunds, it is worth advising your client to contact their County Treasurer to inquire about the process.
The Michigan REALTORS® is also supporting House Bill 4173, introduced by Representative David Maturen (R- Indian Lake), to enshrine into state law a buyer’s right to apply for a transfer tax refund. The bill would also clarify the application of exemption ”u” under the State Real Estate Transfer Tax Act to mirror the important 2008 Attorney General Opinion. As many of your will recall, exemption “u” offers potential tax relief for sellers whose property has declined in value from the time it was originally purchased to the time it was sold. We will continue to update you on the progress of this important legislation.
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Legal Lines – Question of the Month
With the help of McClelland & Anderson, we are taking the most recently asked questions from our legal hotline and putting them in E-news. We will be featuring a different question each issue.
I am both a licensed appraiser and licensed real estate broker. I have a partner who is a licensed appraiser. I will be on vacation and unavailable for two weeks. May I have my partner show one of my listings during this time?
NO. Your partner is required to have a real estate license (not just an appraiser’s license) in order to show property.
For more Legal Q&A, visit the new Legal Resources Web site
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Featured Member Benefit: Waymark Insurance Services – Fund College Education
When considering funding a child or grandchild’s college education, many people overlook the benefits of cash accumulation in life insurance. It is the only plan that is self-completing; that is, it can meet your financial objectives even in the event of death or disability.
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