Is something going on in your municipality that affects private property rights or the real estate industry? We can help!
Every year, NJ Realtors® tackles local issues head-on, helping communities fend off invasive ordinances limiting their private property rights or proposals that restrict your business as a Realtor®.
With help from the local boards/associations, NJ Realtors® has worked on issues that affect towns across the state - whether it was to defeat a harmful law or to support a bill that helps homeowners.
Below are some of the local issues NJ Realtors® has worked on recently:
Signs are a top tool in a Realtors®’ quiver. Open House and For Sale signs are important to help market properties. So, over the years, when a local government plans to implement sign ordinances that are prohibitive, the government affairs department has stepped in.
NJ Realtors® has worked with officials in each of the municipalities below to advocate for ordinances with allow signs or defeat those with prohibit them. Check with your local government for specific rules regarding postings.
- Fair Haven
- Fort Lee
- Freehold Township
- Hope Township
- Little Silver
- New Milford
- Point Pleasant Beach
Certificate of Occupancy
Utilizing funds from the Issues Mobilization Political Action Committee, local Realtors® were able to reach out to town residents and officials regarding a proposed increase in certificate of occupancy fees and alteration/renovation permit fees. Fearing the implementation of this would be a disincentive for improvements of properties, the association reached out by distributing flyers and urging residents to attend key meetings.
NJ Realtors® and local members testified before the town council and the onerous increase was not adopted into law.
When the increase in certificates of approval, fire inspection and code compliance was adopted in 2012, NJ Realtors® and the Middlesex County Association of Realtors® advocated for the huge increases to at least be spread out over a period of time.
In response to our advocacy efforts, the council adopted an ordinance that created a three-year phase-in plane of all of the fee increases.
Working with the Warren County Board of Realtors®, New Jersey Realtors® raised concerns to an ordinance that would have created a system of rent control in Phillipsburg. New Jersey Realtors® raised concerns that rent control would make it more difficult for owners to keep their properties in good condition and actually lead to a lack of quality rental housing. The ordinance, while passed by the Council by one vote, was vetoed by the town’s Mayor, ensuring it would not take effect.
Working with the Monmouth Ocean Regional Realtors®, New Jersey Realtors® helped defeat a ballot question that would have created a strict rent control policy in Asbury Park through the creation of a ballot question group funded by Issues Mobilization dollars. By opposing this ballot question, New Jersey Realtors® helped ensure that a previously approved ordinance would remain in effect that applied rent control only to multiple dwelling units as opposed to one and two-family homes and would maintain a system of vacancy decontrol.
One of the three main areas New Jersey Realtors® always engages in at the local (and other levels) of government is private property rights. Recently many towns across New Jersey have put forward ordinances that would restrict the ability of homeowners to rent out their homes on a short-term basis. This represents a concern for New Jersey Realtors®, who have raised alternatives to address quality-of-life issues such as short-term rental registrations and a three-strikes policy for short-term rentals.
Working with our local boards/associations, New Jersey Realtors® has been able to defeat ordinances that would have restricted short-term rentals in Absecon and Cherry Hill.
New Jersey Realtors® has long argued that, in line with federal and state law, anyone should be able to purchase a home in an age-restricted community so long as they will certify the occupant will be over the age of 55 or 62. New Jersey Realtors® opposed a 2022 ordinance in Berkeley that would limit home sales in these communities to those over 55 or 62, as a matter of private property rights and over concerns that ordinance violates federal and state law. While the Berkeley ordinance was adopted, New Jersey Realtors® is actively working to ensure the ordinance does not spread beyond that town.