Legislative UPDATE: Summaries of Bills Chaptered By the California Secretary of State

California Capitol Building
The source for the following summaries is the Legislative Digest for each bill.

Click the bill titles to download the full text PDFs.

As of today, the following measures have been Chaptered:

SB 4 (Calderon and Vargas) Mortgages.

Requires the notice of sale, given pursuant to a deed of trust or mortgage secured by real property containing from 1 to 4 single-family residences, contain language notifying potential bidders of specified risks involved in bidding on property at a trustee’s sale, and a notice to the property owner informing the owner about how to obtain information regarding any postponement of the sale. Requires a good faith effort to be made to provide current information regarding sale dates and postponements and that the information be available free of charge.

SB 6 (Calderon and Vargas) Real Estate: appraisal and valuation.

Prohibits a licensee from knowingly or intentionally misrepresenting the value of real property. Prohibits a licensee who offers or provides an opinion of value (BPO) of residential real property (as defined) when originating mortgage loans from having an interest in the property (as defined). Prohibits influencing an appraiser to report a minimum or maximum value for specified property, implying to an appraiser that his or her retention depends on his or her estimate of the real property value, excluding an appraiser from future engagement because he or she reported a value that does not meet or exceed a certain threshold, and conditioning compensation paid to an appraiser on consummation of the real estate transaction.

SB 53 (Calderon and Vargas) Real Estate Licensees.

This is an omnibus bill authorizing (among others) the Real Estate Commissioner to issue citations to unlicensed persons believed to be engaging in activities for which a real estate license is required or to licensees who are in violation of any provision of the Real Estate Law or any rule or order thereunder. The Commissioner may include an order to correct the violation or to include an administrative penalty of up to $2,500 per citation. This bill authorizes the Commissioner to apply to the Superior Court for an order requiring a licensee to appear before the Commissioner or to produce evidence (as defined). Authorizes the Court to punish as contempt the failure of a licensee to comply with such an order, and authorizes the Commissioner to make information public confirming an investigation or proceeding against an unlicensed person or licensee, as specified.

Requires a real estate broker who is exempt from the Escrow Law and who engages in escrow activities for 5 or more transactions in a calendar year or whose escrow activities equal or exceed $1,000,000 in a calendar year to file a specified report with the DRE within 60 days following the completion of the calendar year. The Commissioner is authorized to assess specified penalties upon a licensee who fails to provide the report to the DRE, and the Commissioner may suspend or revoke the license of a real estate broker for failure to pay those penalties. This bill authorizes the Commissioner to suspend or revoke a real estate license if the licensee has violated any provision of law that constitutes a violation of the licensing law applicable to the licensee, as specified.

Requires a real estate broker to submit a copy of the information in the real estate broker’s transaction file relative to qualification or exemption from qualification under the Securities Law for a transaction to any investor from whom the real estate broker obtains funds in connection with the transaction. The bill also recasts specified provisions relative to the requirements that apply to transactions exempt from qualification. This bill provides the Commissioner with access to those (DMV) records for purposes of enforcing specified provisions of the Real Estate Law or the Subdivided Lands Law.

SB 217 (Vargas) Mortgage Loan Originators: licensure.

Provides that an expunged or pardoned felony conviction does not require denial of a license or license endorsement but would authorize the consideration of the underlying crime, facts, or circumstances of the expunged or pardoned felony conviction when determining whether to issue a license or license endorsement, as specified. Existing law exempts from the provisions of the California Finance Lenders Law specified persons and entities, including any person doing business under any law of any state or of the United States relating to banks, trust companies, savings and loan associations, and insurance premium finance agencies. Authorizes a person exempt from the provisions of the California Finance Lenders Law to apply to the Commissioner of Corporations for an exempt company registration to allow sponsoring one or more individuals required to be licensed as mortgage loan originators who originate mortgage loans solely on behalf of the exempt person.

Requires an exempt person to comply with all rules and orders that the Commissioner deems necessary to ensure compliance with the federal SAFE Act and would require an exempt person to pay an annual registration fee. Authorizes a licensed mortgage loan originator who is an insurance producer to originate loans on behalf of an exempt person or on behalf of a licensed finance lender that originates loans for an exempt person, as specified.

SB 458 (Corbett) Mortgages: deficiency judgments.

Expands those provisions to prohibit a deficiency judgment upon a note secured solely by a deed of trust or mortgage for a dwelling of not more than 4 units in any case in which the trustor or mortgagor sells the dwelling for a sale price less than the remaining amount of the indebtedness outstanding at the time of sale, in accordance with the written consent of the holder of the deed of trust or mortgage if the title has been voluntarily transferred to a buyer by grant deed or by other document that has been recorded and the proceeds of the sale are tendered as agreed.

Provides, following the sale, in accordance with the written consent, the voluntary transfer of title to a buyer, as specified, and the tender of the sale proceeds, the rights, remedies, and obligations of any holder, beneficiary, mortgagee, trustor, mortgagor, obligor, obligee, or guarantor of the note, deed of trust, or mortgage, and with respect to any other property that secures the note, shall be treated and determined as if the dwelling had been sold through foreclosure under a power of sale, as specified. Prohibits the holder of a note from requiring the trustor, mortgagor, or maker of the note to pay any additional compensation, aside from the proceeds of the sale, in exchange for the written consent to the sale.

Provides that the limitations on a deficiency judgment are inapplicable if the trustor or mortgagor is a corporation, limited liability company, limited partnership, or political subdivision of the state. The provisions would also be inapplicable to any deed of trust, mortgage, or other lien given to secure the payment of bonds or other evidence of indebtedness authorized, or permitted to be issued, by the Commissioner of Corporations, or that is made by a public utility subject to the Public Utilities Act.

SB 510 (Correa) Real Estate Brokers: corporate officers: designating branch managers.

Authorizes an employing broker or corporate designated broker officer appointed by an employing broker to appoint a manager of a branch office or division of the employing broker’s real estate business and delegate to that manager responsibility to oversee and supervise operations and activities, as specified. Requires the appointment be made by means of a written contract and the employing broker or corporate designated broker officer send a notice to the DRE identifying the appointed manager and branch office or division, as specified. Requires the employing broker or corporate designated broker officer to notify the Commissioner whenever a branch manager is terminated or changed.

Specifies that an appointee shall not hold a restricted license, be subject to debarment, or have less than 2 years of full-time real estate experience within 5 years preceding the appointment. Authorizes the Commissioner to suspend or revoke the license of an appointed licensee for failure to properly oversee and supervise operations, as specified.

SB 706 (Price) Business and Professions.

Authorizes the DRE to enter into a settlement with a real estate licensee or applicant instead of the issuance of an accusation or statement of issues against the licensee or applicant and requires the settlement to identify the factual basis for the action being taken and the statutes or regulations that have been violated. Authorizes an administrative law judge to order a licensee in a disciplinary proceeding to pay, upon request of the Commissioner, the reasonable costs of investigating and prosecuting the disciplinary case against the licensee.

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