Legislative Gossip Years: 2009 / 2010 / 2011 / 2012 / 2013
Last Updated: September 2, 2014

Here’s a list of the 2013 Legislative Session’s bills and Department of Real Estate Regulations which may substantially affect how you do business as a real estate licensee. Bills are sorted by topic, and we provide you with the bill number, the status, and a brief description of the bill. Reports on passed bills can be found on our Legislative Watch page. This list is updated every month.

Status Legend:

INTRO = Date the bill was originally introduced for consideration. Bill is still being considered, but not yet law.
AMENDED = Date the bill was last amended. Bill is still being considered, but not yet law.
ENROLLED = Bill approved by both houses and pending the governor’s signature.
PASSED = Bill signed by the governor and passed into law.

Finance: Energy
AB 327 PASSED
10/07/13
This bill changes the way energy bills are calculated. Instead of structuring energy rates as tiers based on volume of use, charges are to be based on other measures, such as the time of use (ex: peak hours vs. off-peak hours). This bill also increases the ceiling for refunds to consumers generated by renewable energy sources.
Finance: Mortgage Lending
SB 30 AMENDED
8/13/13
This bill extends the exclusion of forgiven mortgage debt from homeowner income until January 1, 2014.
SB 310 PASSED
9/6/13
This bill shields title companies (other than title companies acting as trustees) from liability for recording a Notice of Default while a borrower is pursuing foreclosure prevention alternatives.
AB 1700 ENROLLED
8/20/14
This bill prohibits a lender from accepting a reverse mortgage loan application or fees in connection with a reverse mortgage application until seven days after the reverse mortgage applicant receives reverse mortgage counseling. This bill also replaces the checklist to be provided by the lender to the applicant with a reverse mortgage worksheet guide listing issues the applicant is to discuss with a loan counselor.
AB 1730 ENROLLED
8/26/14
This bill makes it a felony to charge an advance fee for negotiating, arranging or offering to perform a mortgage loan modification.
Legal Aspects
SB 752 PASSED 10/05/13 This bill provides for the creation and regulation of commercial and industrial common interest developments.
AB 1404 PASSED
8/12/13
This bill requires adjoining landowners to share responsibility for maintaining boundaries and monuments equally.
AB 2039 AMENDED
8/21/14
This bill prohibits the practice of shill bidding on a real estate auction. A seller may appoint someone to bid on their behalf, but this is to be disclosed to all participants. The bill also prevents lenders and auction companies from requiring a homeowner or seller’s agent to defend a lender or auction company from liability as a condition for the lender’s approval.
Practice: Due Diligence
SB 652 PASSED 9/30/13 This bill requires the seller of a one-to-four unit residential property to disclose on the transfer disclosure form any claims they’ve made for damages relating to construction deficiencies in the property.
SB 676 PASSED 9/24/13 This bill authorizes the Real Estate Commissioner to suspend or revoke a broker’s or agent’s license if they are found to have falsified, destroyed, concealed, or otherwise unlawfully altered any of the documentation required to be kept available for three years or sought in connection with an investigation or audit.
AB 2018 ENROLLED
8/22/14
This bill authorizes a broker to maintain ownership of a fictitious business name, and authorizes a salesperson to apply for a fictitious business name. A team name which is used by two or more licensees, includes a licensee’s surname with “associates,” “groups” or “team” and does not imply an entity independent of a broker may be used without filing for a fictitious business name.
SB 1171 PASSED
8/15/14
This bill requires real estate agents in a commercial property transaction to provide the seller and buyer with an agency law disclosure.
AB 2540 PASSED
8/25/14
This bill requires California Bureau of Real Estate (CalBRE) license applicants to provide valid contact information on their license applications, and requires current licensees to update their mailing address, telephone number and email address no later than 30 days after making a change.
SB 1459 PASSED
7/10/14
This bill adds a two-hour California-specific component to the pre-licensing education required for mortgage loan originator license/endorsement applicants. This bill also adds a one-hour California-specific component to the continuing education requirements for licensed/endorsed mortgage loan originators.
Property Management
SB 612 PASSED
8/19/13
This bill permits a tenant to terminate their tenancy if they have been a victim of human trafficking or elder or dependent adult abuse based on documentation from a health practitioner, domestic violence or sexual assault counselor or a human trafficking case worker.
SB 1072 PASSED
6/25/14
This bill adds “aviation activities” to the list of recreational activities undertaken on a property which do not trigger a property owner’s duty to give a warning of hazardous conditions.
AB 2100 PASSED
7/21/14
This bill prohibits homeowners’ associations from fining owners for under-watered plants and lawns during state-declared droughts.
SB 1144 INTRO
2/20/14
This bill prohibits a city, county and homeowners’ association from fining owners for under-watered plants and lawns during state-declared droughts.
AB 2104 ENROLLED
8/20/14
This bill prohibits homeowners’ associations from enforcing provisions which forbid the replacement of existing turf with drought-resistant plants.
Taxation
AB 792 PASSED
10/04/13
This bill exempts property owners who generate and consume clean, renewable energy  on their properties from paying local utility consumption taxes.
AB 2358 & SB 339 AMENDED
2/18/14
This bill extends exclusion of principal residence indebtedness from income if that debt is discharged before January 1, 2014. This bill also retroactively refunds taxes already paid on principal residence indebtedness discharged between January 1, 2013 and January 1, 2014.