Monthly Archives: November 2017

The Profile: Thurston County Statistics & Data

Updated November 2017

First published in 1982, The Profile is a compilation of statistics, trends, analyses and comparisons for Thurston County and its jurisdictions. Since its inception, The Profile has developed a reputation as a comprehensive and reliable resource for a wide variety of users needing current, accurate data for the region. The Profile is updated each fall.

AcknowledgementsThurston Regional Planning Council wishes to thank the many public and private agencies, and their staff, that have provided data and information used in The Profile. Some of the agencies contributing to The Profile include:

  • Washington State Office of Financial Management
  • U.S. Census Bureau
  • U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
  • Washington Department of Employment Securities
  • Washington State Superintendent of Public Education
  • Northwest Multiple Listing Service

Complete data sources are included with each table. While TRPC strives to provide the most accurate and timely data available, it cannot guarantee, and is not responsible for, the reliability of data originating from other institutions.

Archives

Thurston Regional Planning Council published The Profile as a printed document between 1982 and 2013. During that time period, TRPC continued to use the latest technologies and information to make the document a leading resource for data on Thurston County. To see how The Profile — and the data included — have evolved during its 30-plus year history, explore The Profile archives.

Testing Your Garden Soil

If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it a hundred times: every garden should have its soil tested. Testing is the easy part, but interpreting the results can be confusing. To help sort out the confusion, this article discusses the reasons for testing, explains the various numbers on the report, considers the advantages and disadvantages of home test kits, and describes a few alternative tests being used by some organic growers.

Why test the soil? If your garden is growing well, an argument could be made not to bother testing at all. However, if your plants aren’t growing as well as you’d like or you’re wondering if you’re using the right amount of fertilizer, a soil test is the place to start.

But a word of caution: a soil test won’t solve all your garden problems or tell you everything about your soil. It will give you a periodic snapshot of your soil’s mineral health. Tests are most useful when done regularly (every three to four years), at the same time of year (spring is fine, but fall is best because that’s when fertility is lowest), and with the same lab (different labs use different tests, and results can vary). This way, you’re comparing apples to apples with each set of results.


A Sample Test
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ The most accurate tests are conducted by university and private soil laboratories. Contact your cooperative extension service to find a lab in your area. These labs have had years of experience testing the soils in your state and giving specific fertilizer recommendations based on the soil types and crops grown.

The basic tests usually cost less than $20 but can be more if you include tests for specific minor nutrients such as zinc or contaminants such as lead. Results often come as a number and a graph for relative levels of each nutrient (see sample test report below).

The graph is more helpful in understanding nutrient levels. This sample describes some of the common results found on soil test forms. I’ve also included information on deficiency symptoms and some suggested fertilizers high in those nutrients.

Symptoms of excessive fertilization tend to manifest themselves as deficiency symptoms of other nutrients. For example, high calcium levels interfere with the uptake of potassium. 1. Type of sample. Laboratories will ask what kind of plants are growing in your test site (vegetables, flowers, lawn, orchard).

Each type of planting needs a separate soil test. 2. Soil pH. This is measured on a scale of 1 (acid) to 14 (alkaline). Most garden crops grow well at a pH of 6 to 7, but specific crops such as blueberries and azaleas may need a lower (more acidic) pH.

Soils tend to be more acidic in high-rainfall areas (the Southeast and Pacific Northwest), while drier climates (Southwest deserts) can have more alkaline soils. In general lime is used to raise pH, while sulfur is recommended to lower it.

If your soil also lacks magnesium, dolomitic limestone (which contains magnesium along with calcium) is recommended. Apply lime and sulfur in summer when the soils are warm and microorganism activity is high. 3. Nitrogen (N).

Though nitrogen is one of the key nutrients needed for plant growth, many labs won’t test for it because of its high mobility. Nitrogen leaches out of the soil easily, and levels can fluctuate through the growing season. Deficiency usually appears as pale yellow leaves (often the older leaves first) and stunted growth.

Since organic matter can hold and then slowly release nitrogen as it breaks down, some labs link the organic matter content to the nitrogen level in the soil. However, organic matter may tie up more nitrogen than it releases (see “Percent organic matter”).

Alfalfa meal, cottonseed meal, urea, and fish meal are some fertilizer sources of nitrogen. 4. Phosphorus (P). Phosphorus levels are often reported as either available or reserve. Available phosphorus can be used now, while reserve is tied up due to pH or nutrient imbalance.

Often, just raising or lowering the pH to the ideal 6.5 will free up phosphorus for plant use. It isn’t used up quickly, and adding too much will build excessive levels that run off, causing pollution. Deficiencies are indicated by purple leaves, brittle roots, skinny stems, and late fruit set and maturity.

In early spring, deficiency symptoms on seedlings may disappear with warmer temperatures and increased microbial activity. Superphosphate, rock phosphate, and bonemeal are good sources of phosphorus. 5. Potassium (K). Potassium is vital for stem strength, root growth, and disease resistance.

Many soils are naturally high in potassium, and it is readily available to plants. However, sandy and highly weathered soils can be deficient. Signs are irregular yellowing of lower leaves and poor root growth.

Muriate of potash, greensand, and wood ash are good sources. 6. Calcium (Ca). Calcium is important for cell-wall integrity and root and leaf growth. If you’re liming your soil regularly to keep the pH above 6, calcium deficiency would be unlikely.

However, on alkaline soils (pH above 7) add gypsum (calcium sulfate) instead of lime. Low levels of calcium show as deformed new leaves and branches, and weak stems and roots.

7. Magnesium (Mg). Magnesium is essential for chlorophyll and green leaf development. Pale leaves with green veins are a sign of deficiency. Adding dolomitic lime to raise the pH often corrects deficiency symptoms; on alkaline soils, add Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate). 8. Cation exchange capacity (CEC). CEC measures the ability of soil particles to hold and release specific nutrients. In general, sandy soils tend to have a lower CEC than most clay soils.

Adding well- rotted compost raises the CEC. High CEC usually means a more fertile soil. If your soil has a low CEC, add small amounts of fertilizer throughout the growing season to prevent runoff and waste. Most labs report CEC levels in milliequivalents per 100 grams of soil (meq/100g). A rating of 5 is considered low, while 25 is high. 9. Percent organic matter.

Organic matter is essential for nitrogen absorption and release, and as a food for microorganisms that help make other nutrients available. A level of 3 to 5 percent organic matter is considered ideal. But it’s the quality, not the amount, that can make the difference. Soils high in undecomposed organic matter, such as wood chips or sawdust, can tie up nitrogen and create a deficiency.

The best-quality organic matter to apply, especially right before planting, is well-rotted compost. 10. Percent base saturation. Some experts consider the relationship between four key elements (calcium, potassium, magnesium, and sodium) an indication of soil health. The ideal ratio is approximately 60 to 80 percent calcium, 10 to 15 percent magnesium, 5 to 7 percent potassium, and less than 3 percent sodium.

Adding these figures gives a number called the base saturation. In general, the higher the number, within the given ratios, the more fertile the soil. Labs that test for base saturation believe that the optimum levels of specific nutrients aren’t as important as the relationship among these nutrients. 11. Recommendations.

Most labs give recommendations for adding specific nutrients to bring them to their optimum levels. Recommendations are often given in pounds of that element per 1,000 square feet of garden.


Calculate The Amount Of Fertilizer
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Calculate the amount of fertilizer to apply to reach that recommended amount. For example, our sample test recommends applying 3.5 pounds of phosphorus.

If you’re using bonemeal (12 percent phosphorus, as indicated on the bag), calculate how much actual phosphorus is in the bag by multiplying the percentage of P in the fertilizer (0.12) by the total weight of the bag (say, 20 pounds) to get 2.4 pounds.

To add the recommended 3.5 pounds of phosphorus, you’d apply about 1-1/2 bags (30 pounds) of bonemeal per 1,000 square feet. If you’re adding bulk organic fertilizers such as manure, you can reduce the amount of other fertilizers by a fourth to a third by applying 15 bushels of well- rotted cow or horse manure or 7 to 8 bushels of poultry, sheep, or goat manure.

Do-it-yourself soil tests A laboratory soil test has definite advantages, but it takes time to get the results. For a quick look at your soil, many home tests are available. These rely on color charts to match the nutrient levels in a soil solution.

Unless you buy an expensive test kit, the specific nutrient tests aren’t, in general, as accurate as in a professional soil test. Their usefulness is limited to a basic guide of the pH and nutrients that are immediately available, and they’re best for gardeners who are knowledgeable and inquisitive about soil chemistry.


Alternative Soil Tests

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Some private labs are responding to the need of organic gardeners and farmers to go beyond testing the mineral content of the soil to offer tests for biological content (fungi and bacteria). These labs, such as Soil Food Web Laboratory in Oregon, believe that the soil’s biological life is just as important as the mineral content in determining soil and plant health.

It’s believed that the more diverse the microorganism population in the soil, the better the soil structure, the more nutrients available to plants, and the less disease on the plants.

Some labs, such as Woods End Laboratory in Maine, have a home test kit (Solvita) that tests biological and textural components in the soil, with a special emphasis on organic matter management.

These tests, though more expensive than traditional university tests, give gardeners and farmers valuable information about their soil’s microbial life. Since these tests are relatively new, cropping and fertilizer recommendations based on them don’t have a long history of experience

 
 

Contact Information

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
phone: (206) 901-1549

Should I Sell My Home Now or Wait Until the Spring?

Source: Kyle Hiscock/RISMedia

There are many questions homeowners ask themselves during the selling process. “How much will my home sell for?”  “How much should I list my home for?”  “Who should I select as a real estate agent to sell my home?”  “What if the real estate agent overprices my home?”  Last but not least, “Is this a good time to be selling a home?” is also a very common question that real estate agents are asked.

As with every decision in life, there are pros and cons, and choosing when to sell a home is no different. There are many factors that need to be taken into consideration before deciding when to sell a home. Many homeowners believe selling a home during the fall or winter months is not a good idea and that the spring is the only time a house should be sold. This is the furthest from the truth. Certainly most real estate markets across the United States experience a “spring market rush” every year. There is no doubt that the “spring market” is a great time to be selling and buying real estate, however, the fall and winter seasons may be the best fit for you for many reasons.

Here are several reasons why choosing to sell your home now may be a better decision than waiting until the spring:

Less Competition
One way that you can tell the spring real estate market has arrived is by driving down a street in your local community. In all likelihood there will be For Sale signs up all over the neighborhood! One great reason to sell your home now and not wait until the spring market is there is sure to be less competition.  The fewer number of comparable homes for sale, the greater the probability that a buyer will look at your home.

Simply put, it’s the supply and demand theory. If there are less homes for sale, there are less homes that a potential buyer can choose from, therefore increasing the demand for your home. Not only will less competition increase the probability for showings, but it will also increase the probability that an offer will be received and you will get the maximum amount of money for your home.

Serious Buyers Are Out There
Homes are sold and bought 365 days a year, period!  Many homeowners believe that buyers aren’t out there during the fall and winter months. This simply is not the case. Serious buyers are always out there!  Some buyers may stop their home search because it is the fall or winter, but serious buyers will continue to look at homes, no matter what time of year it is.

The fall and winter months are also a great time for a potential buyer to see what a specific neighborhood is like.  Do your neighbors have pumpkins on their front step?  Are there lots of Trick-or-Treaters wandering the neighborhood on Halloween?  Do any of your neighbors have any light displays for the holidays?  There are buyers out there who will look at these types of things when determining whether your home is in the right neighborhood for them or not.

The Best Agents Are Always Up To The Challenge
Any real estate agent who tells you that the fall or winter months are a bad time to sell is not someone you want selling your home! A great real estate agent will know how to adapt to the current season and market their listings to reflect that.  A great real estate agent can make suggestions and give some of their tips on how to sell a home during the fall or winter seasons. If a real estate agent doesn’t have any suggestions on making your home more desirable for the current season, you should be concerned about the creativity they are going to use when marketing your home.

Staging For The Holiday Season
Many sellers believe staging a home is the main reason a home sells.  While staging certainly helps sell homes, some buyers have a difficult time envisioning themselves in a home no matter what you do. However, there are some buyers who can easily be “sold” on a home because it is staged.  Simple “seasonal” staging such as adjusting the color of the decor or having an aroma in the air that is relative to the time of year can go a long way with some potential buyers and possibly be the difference between a home selling or not.

Mortgage Rates Are Low
If you’ve read about real estate in the past year, it’s likely you’ve read that the mortgage rates are very low.  You also probably read that there is an expectation that the rates will increase very soon. Since mortgage rates are so low right now, buyers are able to afford more expensive homes.  If mortgage rates increase over the fall and winter months while you’re waiting for the spring market, it could cost you thousands of dollars as it could eliminate many buyers from the real estate marketplace!  Less demand for your home will mean less money. Bottom line: take advantage of selling your home while the rates are this low.

Quicker Transactions
Right now, there are fewer real estate transactions than there will be in the spring.  The fewer number of transactions means the mortgage lenders have less loans to process, attorneys have less closings to do, and home inspectors have fewer inspections to do.  All of these factors should lead to a quicker transaction and closing for all the parties involved.  One of the most frustrating things for a seller to deal with while selling their home is not getting answers in a reasonable amount of time. A quicker transaction is going to be less stress for you.

By considering all of the reasons above, you will be able to determine whether now is a good time to sell or if you should wait until the spring.

Special Financing Terms for Veterans

 

 
Land Home Financial Waives Our Upfront Origination
Fee to Help Support Our Military Veterans! **
You have served our country and made sacrifices to help protect our way of life. Land Home appreciates all you have done, and to thank you for your service we would like to take an opportunity to give back to you.

A veteran who obtains VA financing through Land Home Financial is not charged an origination fee, therefore can pay up to 1% of the sales price in non-allowable fees. This eliminates the need for a seller credit to cover these costs. This levels the playing field and our Veterans offer is as strong as other home financing programs.

VA Loan Benefits:
  • No Money Down Financing Option Available.
  • Mortgage insurance not required.
  • Flexible qualifying guidelines.
  • Conforming loan amounts: $424,100 in the Continental US, and $636,150 in
    Hawaii and Alaska.
  • Competitive interest rates.
  • Buyer is not responsible for certain closing costs, for example: escrow fees, notary fee, and processing fee.
Call Today and Let Me Help Turn Your
Dreams Into a Reality.
Kenton Becker Kenton Becker
Sr. Mortgage Consultant
NMLS #123961Office: 425.289.1102
Cell: 206.423.2552
Fax: 206.309.4736
Email: kenton.becker@lhfs.com22525 SE 64th Place, Suite 220
Issaquah, WA 98027
Land Home Financial
Land Home Financial Services, Inc. is an Equal Housing Opportunity Lender. Equal Opportunity Lender The rates, loan programs, fees, options and guidelines in any loan scenario shown: (i) are for illustrative purposes only; (ii) are subject to change without notice; (iii) are subject to restrictions; (iv) will not apply to all borrowers or situations; and (v) do not represent a commitment to lend. Contact a Mortgage Loan Originator for details. Land Home operates only in states where it is authorized to conduct business. Branch location: 22525 SE 64th Place, Suite 220, Issaquah, WA 98027. Licensed by the WA State Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) (Consumer Loan Branch Office License #CL-89331). Corp. NMLS #1796. To view state licenses go to www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org

*Must meet VA eligibility to qualify for a VA loan. Cannot be used in conjunction with a Community Lending Program. **No Origination, Processing or Land Home Admin Fees. Land Home Financial Services, Inc. is licensed nationally, but its Loan Originators can only assist consumers with property located in state(s) where the Loan Originator is licensed. Click on the NMLS link above to view a complete list of the Loan Originators licenses. 

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Rev – 5-2017

 

 

Key Indicators for Western Washington Housing Still Rising, But Brokers Detect Slowdown & Uncertainty

Source: NWMLS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nov. 6, 2017

KIRKLAND, Washington (November 6, 2017) – Early seasonal snow and questions swirling around the
tax plan unveiled last week by House Republicans could make the usual seasonal slowdown more
pronounced, say industry leaders from Northwest Multiple Listing Service. For October, however, key
indicators trended upwards.

Pending sales rose nearly 8 percent from a year ago, closed sales were up 5.2 percent, and prices jumped
about 8.2 percent, with 14 counties reporting double-digit gains. Even the number of new listings
improved on the year-ago total.

Northwest MLS figures for the 23 counties it serves show members added 8,466 new listings to inventory
during October, outgaining the year-ago total of 7,575 by 11.8 percent. Buyers outnumbered new listings,
with 10,586 of them having their offers accepted. That number of pending sales was up nearly 8 percent
from the same month a year ago.

“The challenge for buyers actually isn’t lack of choice, it is the rapid pace of sales,” suggested Ken
Anderson, president/owner of Coldwell Banker Evergreen Olympic Realty.

“The market in Thurston County has never been better for sellers, and they’re getting the message,”
Anderson remarked. His analysis revealed a 10-year high for sellers coming to market during October.
“These savvy sellers are not waiting until spring to sell. They are taking advantage of today’s great
market and making their move now,” he reported.

Buyers may find themselves in a quandary as the year winds down as they contemplate limited supply,
possible upticks in interest rates and tax reform. Last week’s announcement of a provision in a GOP tax
proposal to cap the mortgage interest deduction is concerning to buyers, brokers and builders.

“Imagine if the proposed plan to cap the mortgage interest deduction at $500,000 is approved in a market
that is starved for homes and where the median price [for a single family home in King County] is now
$630,000,” said O B Jacobi, president of Windermere Real Estate. “Homeowners may be less likely to
sell because they would be giving up their grandfathered tax credit on their current home. That’s fewer
homes for sale in a market where we really need them,” he stated, adding, “There could also be a flood of
new buyers trying to purchase before the plan is passed, adding to the already hyper-competitive market
conditions.”

The president of the National Association of REALTORS® also weighed in, saying details are currently
under review, but stated, “Eliminating or nullifying the tax incentives for homeownership puts home
values and middle class homeowners at risk, and from a cursory examination this legislation appears to do
just that.”

Northwest MLS data show 66 percent of single family homes sold so far this year (Jan. – Oct.) in King
County had selling prices of $500,000 or higher.

Seattle Leads an “Unstoppable” Housing Market

Source: RISMedia

Home prices grew in the latest S&P CoreLogic/Case-Shiller Indices, up 6.1 percent year-over-year in August, compared to 5.9 percent in July. The increase is against-grain in an economy gaining at a lesser pace, says S&P Dow Jones Indices Chairman of the Index Committee and Managing Director David M. Blitzer.

“Home price increases appear to be unstoppable,” Blitzer says. “Most prices across the rest of the economy are barely moving compared to housing. Over the last year the consumer price index rose 2.2 percent, driven largely by energy costs. Aside from oil, the only other major item with price gains close to housing was hospital services, which were up 4.6 percent. Wages climbed 3.6 percent in the year to August.”

Is there an end in sight? According to Blitzer, home prices have come back since the downturn—and then some—but how long they sustain their trajectory remains to be seen.

“The ongoing rise in home prices poses questions of why prices are climbing and whether they will continue to outpace most of the economy,” says Blitzer. “Currently, low mortgage rates, combined with an improving economy, are supporting home prices. Low interest rates raise the value of both real and financial long-lived assets.

“The price gains are not simply a rebound from the financial crisis,” Blitzer says. “Nationally and in nine of the 20 cities in the report, home prices have reached new all-time highs; however, home prices will not rise forever. Measures of affordability are beginning to slide, indicating that the pool of buyers is shrinking. The Federal Reserve is pushing short-term interest rates upward and mortgage rates are likely to follow over time, removing a key factor supporting rising home prices.”

The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price NSA Index’s 10-City Composite rose 5.3 percent year-over-year, up from 5.2 percent in July, while its 20-City Composite rose 5.9 percent year-over-year, up from 5.8 percent in July. Month-over-month, the 10-City Composite and the 20-City Composite both rose, 0.5 percent and 0.4 percent, respectively.

Of the 20 cities analyzed for the Index, Las Vegas, Nev., San Diego, Calif., and Seattle, Wash., came out on top, with prices up 8.6 percent year-over-year in Las Vegas, 7.8 percent in San Diego and 13.2 percent in Seattle.

Mortgage Interest Deduction Capped in Proposed Tax Overhaul

Source: RISMedia / Jameson Doris

After weeks of debate, Republican lawmakers have finally revealed their legislation for a major tax overhaul, the largest to be proposed in decades. The bill, entitled the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, nearly doubles the standard deduction for middle-class families and makes no changes to the way 401(k) plans are treated pretax, but for REALTORS® and the consumers they serve, it’s not all good news.

Last June, House Speaker Paul Ryan warned that he would likely be unable to save all of the tax incentives that REALTORS® view as vital, The Wall Street Journal reported. We now know exactly what the Republicans were unable to salvage. Under their bill, existing homeowners can keep their mortgage interest deduction, but purchases that are made moving forward will be capped at $500,000. The bill also cuts the corporate tax rate to 20 percent (from 35 percent), as reported by The New York Times on Thursday.

“This legislation closely tracks with the House Republican Blueprint for tax reform, which threatens home values and takes money straight from the pockets of homeowners,” said National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) President Bill Brown in a statement. “REALTORS® believe in the promise of lower tax rates, but this bill is nowhere near as good a deal as the one middle-class homeowners get under current law. Tax hikes and falling home prices are a one-two punch that homeowners simply can’t afford.”

“The House Republican tax reform plan abandons middle-class taxpayers in favor of high-income Americans and wealthy corporations,” said Granger MacDonald, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), in a statement. “The bill eviscerates existing housing tax benefits by drastically reducing the number of homeowners who can take advantage of mortgage interest and property tax incentives. Capping mortgage interest at $500,000 for new-home purchases means that homebuyers in expensive markets will effectively lose this housing tax benefit moving forward.

“The House leadership killed a cost-effective plan proposed by NAHB that Ways and Means Committee leaders agreed to include in the legislation,” MacDonald said. “It would provide a robust homeownership tax credit that would have helped up to 37 million additional homeowners who do not currently itemize. Most of them are low- and moderate-income homeowners. Meanwhile, as corporations receive a major tax cut, small businesses, which generate the lion’s share of job growth, get limited relief. The bottom line: Congress is ignoring the needs of America’s working-class families and small businesses, and by undermining the nation’s longstanding support for homeownership and threatening to lower the value of the largest asset held by most American families, this tax reform plan will put millions of homeowners at risk.”

“The tax reform legislation proposed by House Republican leaders takes a historic step in directly revising the mortgage interest deduction (MID), a $70 billion annual tax expenditure that primarily benefits higher income households—including the top 1 percent of earners in the country,” said Diane Yentel, president and CEO of the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC), in a statement. “The Republican tax proposal makes sensible reforms in lowering the amount of a mortgage against which the MID can be claimed to $500,000 for new-home loans and doubling the standard deduction. This change to the MID would impact fewer than 6 percent of mortgages nationwide and would save an estimated $95.5 billion over the first decade; however, the legislation uses the savings generated by the MID reform to pay for lower tax rates for billionaires and corporations without addressing the affordable housing crisis in America. This proposal is a non-starter.

“Instead, Congress should reinvest the savings from the MID reform into affordable housing solutions, like the national Housing Trust Fund, rental assistance, or a renter’s credit, that would help the lowest income people in America—including seniors, people with disabilities, families with children, and other vulnerable populations—who too often struggle to pay the rent and make ends meet.

“The National Low Income Housing Coalition has significant concerns with other provisions in the overall tax bill and further analysis is needed to determine the impact,” Yentel said.

The California Association of REALTORS® (C.A.R.) echoed similar concerns. “We are currently reading through the bill proposed [on Thursday] to determine the exact impact it will have on California homeowners and its housing market,” said C.A.R. President Geoff McIntosh. “From what we have seen so far, limiting the mortgage interest deduction to $500,000 will no doubt hurt homeownership in states with high housing costs such as California.

“Any change that would make home-buying less attractive will be detrimental to the housing industry and the nation’s economy because of the 2.5 million private-sector jobs created by the industry in an average year,” McIntosh added.

It’s important to keep in mind, however, that this legislation will be aggressively contested and debated over the next several weeks as Republicans fight to have a finalized version on President Trump’s desk by Christmas. That version stands to be unrecognizable to what was announced today, due to battles various lobbying groups are about to wage.

NAR had already begun fighting before the legislation was announced. Recently, the Association deployed digital ads in every district of House Ways and Means Committee members asking constituents in those areas to remind their lawmakers not to “let tax reform become a tax increase for middle class homeowners.”

The Association has now announced that it will expand these efforts to Senate Finance Committee members’ states by the end of the week.

In the immediate future, things will move rapidly and countless groups will come forward to have their opinions heard. This is one area where NAR has a distinct advantage. Not only does it carry the influence of being the largest association; it also represents one of the most coveted voting blocs in the country: homeowners.