A new year means new resolutions, although we may not stick with them for the entire year. A new year also means new laws, which are often more permanent than resolutions. Since commercial real estate industry is our forte, we will be talking about the assembly and senate bills affecting commercial agents, brokers and property owners in California starting in 2016. The following are just three of the laws of which you should be aware:
EPA Benchmarking Data Disclosure for Owners of Nonresidential Buildings – AB 802 (replaces AB 1103)
This law replaces Assembly Bill 1103 that was originally passed in 2009. Assembly bill 802 repeals the requirement of the Energy Use Disclosure for nonresidential buildings. The new law requires the current owner / operator of a nonresidential property to disclose benchmarking data and rating, as indicated by the EPA’s Energy Star Portfolio Manager, to a prospective buyer, tenant or lender of an entire building.
The new assembly bill requires each utility, no later than January 1, 2017, to provide energy usage information for a building to the owner, owner’s agent, or operator to the owner’s account in the Energy Star Portfolio Manager. In addition, the bill requires the Public Utilities Commission to authorize electric and gas companies to provide incentives to customers so they can increase their building’s energy efficiency.
Continuing Education for Brokers and Salespersons – AB 345
Assembly bill 345 requires a broker to complete a 3 hour course in the management of offices and supervision of licensed activities, as part of the broker’s 45 hours of continuing education that is required for renewal of a broker license every four years. This applies to brokers in California who are renewing their license for the first time after January 1, 2016.
Furthermore, the 8 hour update survey course required by brokers and salespersons for renewal of a license will now include management and supervision, in addition to the traditional topics, such as ethics, risk management, agency relationships / duties and consumer protection.
New courses offered to salespersons include organizational and management techniques, such as how to be effectively supervised by a broker. These are available as part of their continuing education requirements.
BRE Must Provide Personal Info to Employment Development Department – SB 560
Existing law requires a licensing board, including the Bureau of Real Estate, to provide specified personal information regarding licensees to the Franchise Tax Board. The new law, Senate Bill 560, requires a licensing board to disclose personal information regarding licensees to the Employment Development Department, which administers the unemployment compensation program.
These are only 3 of the regulations that are starting to impact the California real estate community in 2016. The above is not a complete list of the new laws and regulations taking effect. Article is not legal advice and is published for informational purposes only. While deemed to be accurate, the information should be independently verified. For more details about these laws, please refer to leginfo.legislature.ca.gov