Monday Morning Cup of Coffee takes a look at news coming across HousingWire’s weekend desk, with more coverage to come on larger issues.
It's the last week before Christmas! That means everyone is busy wrapping up the year and getting ready for the Holidays and 2018.
This is the last MMCC before the new year, so enjoy it while you can! Of course, we will continue to bring you the latest news in housing throughout the week.
You know who’s going to be really busy before Christmas? Republicans in the House and Senate.
Friday night, the Republican committee assigned to negotiate the bill, which strikes several compromises between the previous House and Senate legislations, including a compromise on the mortgage interest deduction.
Earlier this month, the Senate passed a bill to completely overhaul the current tax system. The House passed its tax reform bill back in the middle of November. The two legislative bodies then created a committee to come to an agreement about which tax bill to send to the president's desk.
While the House tax bill cut the mortgage interest deduction in half, bringing it from $1 million to $500,000, the Senate version left the MID intact. In the newly passed compromise, the mortgage interest deduction is cut to $750,000.
And despite some uncertainty over the weekend, Republicans are now saying they expect Congress to pass the tax code overhaul this week.
Now, the Senate could pass the tax bill through as soon as Tuesday, and the house expects to pass the bill by Wednesday. President Donald Trump said he plans to sign the bill into law by the end of the week.
As a candidate, I promised we would pass a massive TAX CUT for the everyday working American families who are the backbone and the heartbeat of our country. Now, we are just days away... pic.twitter.com/MADTGUMktX— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 17, 2017
And the housing industry is more on board with this latest version of the bill, some even saying that they give it their full support.
“NAHB fully supports the final conference report on tax reform legislation and commends the work of House-Senate conferees,” said Granger MacDonald, National Association of Home Builders chairman. “This comprehensive overhaul of the nation's tax code will help middle-class families, maintain the nation's commitment to affordable housing and ensure that small businesses are treated fairly relative to large corporations.”
“Lower tax rates and a fair tax code will spur economic growth and increase competitiveness, and that is good for housing,” MacDonald said. “We urge the House and Senate to move quickly to pass this legislation.”
Others in the industry also supported the bill, but said they are concerned over some aspects.
“We remain concerned that the overall structure of this bill poses problems for homeowners and the broader housing market, but the conference committee has made some important improvements to the House and Senate legislation that ultimately will benefit some homeowners and communities,” said Elizabeth Mendenhall, National Association of Realtors president.
“We are particularly pleased with the treatment of capital gains on the sale of a home and the preservation of deductions for second homes,” Mendenhall said. “We are also grateful that the positive changes for commercial real estate and real estate professionals from the Senate bill have survived.”
In other, non-legislative news, Black Knight announced today it extended its Homebot app to lenders.
The integrated software, data and analytics solutions provider announced it extended the Homebot client engagement tool to mortgage and home equity lenders. The solution enables lenders to continuously engage their client base by providing actionable data on how to make smart home finance decisions.
“Homebot offers an affordable, automated and cutting-edge mobile tool that helps lenders re-engage their clients after a loan has closed,” said Kevin Coop, Black Knight Data and Analytics Group executive and president.
“The solution, which helps support borrower retention, draws from Black Knight’s comprehensive repository of property and mortgage data, and applies advanced analytics, including our automated valuation models,” Coop said. “Lenders use the Homebot solution to deliver reliable, timely and customized wealth-building information to consumers and strengthen their relationships with them.”
That’s all for this weekend, but we will keep you up to date this week as more news flows in, including the latest news for the Republican tax plan.
Have a Merry Christmas!