In a coup for California homeowners, state legislators have passed the California Homeowner Bill of Rights. Essentially, the law prohibits banks from foreclosing on any homeowner who has applied for a modification to their mortgage. This stipulation comes from a national settlement in February that guaranteed a series of consumer protections by the country’s five biggest banks.
California’s own Attorney General Kamala Harris was instrumental in reaching said settlement. This law, as well as the $18 billion of relief for Californians who lost their homes, are seen as a major blessing for residents in the state. However, banks and realtors are skeptical. They claim it will lead to higher prices for California homes, and that it will only stave off the inevitable foreclosure of certain individuals who cannot afford their mortgages. The bill is headed to Governor Jerry Brown’s desk, and Brown has indicated he will sign it.
Would a law such as this cause lenders to be more discerning in handing out mortgages in the future? How badly needed is this form of relief in California? When will it go into effect and how can consumers take advantage of it? Meanwhile, the Los Angeles City Council is voting today on an ordinance to increase parking fines as part of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s budget plan. How big are these increases and when would they go into play?
Mike Feuer, Assemblyman representing California’s 42nd Assembly District, which includes West Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Century City, Westwood, Bel Air, Brentwood, Hollywood, Hancock Park, Los Feliz, North Hollywood, Valley Village, Toluca Lake, Universal City, Studio City and Sherman Oaks
Stuart Gabriel, director of the Ziman Center for Real Estate at UCLA and Arden Realty Chair and Professor of Finance, UCLA Anderson School of Management
Alice Walton, Politics Reporter AKA The City Maven, KPCC