United States
January 2023
US Market Report

New year, new housing laws – are you compliant?

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PayProp has the scoop on a few new housing laws you can expect to see in 2023.

Housing laws in Illinois

As of January 1, Illinois residents must switch to smoke detectors with non-removable, 10-year batteries. Residents have 90 days to replace non-compliant smoke detectors, after which they can be fined up to $100 every 30 days, up to $1,500.

Landlords and property managers nationwide are required to install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in all rental properties, though each state has its own laws governing their upkeep.

Property managers can specify in the lease who is responsible for testing, maintaining, and replacing alarms during a tenancy, but it’s up to the property manager to check that rental properties are up to code when doing walkthroughs.

Housing laws in Texas

Since convening on January 10, the 88th Texas Legislature has 140 days to decide how to spend the state’s $32.7 billion budget surplus.

Republican political leaders Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick want to use at least half of the surplus to cut property taxes by raising the homestead exemption from $40,000 to $70,000.

The Texas comptroller's office reports that property tax collections have risen more than 20% since 2017.

There is also talk of lowering sales taxes to benefit renters more directly.

Bills with a two-thirds majority vote can take effect as early as the Legislature decides. The remaining bills will take effect on August 27 — 90 days after the session ends.

Housing laws in Florida

Some of the biggest 2023 housing law developments are coming out of Florida.

Senate Bill 2A was enacted on January 1 as part of a massive property insurance reform in the aftermath of Hurricane Ian. The law prevents policyholders from signing over insurance benefits to contractors to pay for repairs and also allows insurance companies to require binding arbitration, among other new standards meant to cut litigation costs and speed up the claims process.

Some property owners and their representatives are concerned that SB 2A will make it harder for a policyholder to collect on their claims against their insurers. Others are frustrated that the law doesn't include a blanket reduction in insurance prices.

Although property insurance is not required to rent out a home in Florida, it is advisable given the state's vulnerability to hurricanes. If you’re concerned about your access to affordable property insurance, we advise consulting an attorney.

Property owners are also keeping an eye on Orange County, Florida, where there is still an active lawsuit over a rent control ordinance. Although the lawsuit's status is unknown at this time, there's a chance it may be resolved in 2023 and could spur similar measures in other counties – and possibly other states.

To prevent violations and protect reputation, it’s crucial that property managers and landlords stay up to date with ever-changing local and federal housing legislation.

More legislation headlines

Atlanta City Council OKs funding for new affordable housing grant programs – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

This Florida city could become the nation's first to revive single-family zoning amid current debate – CoStar

The housing revolution brewing in 2023 – The Hill

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