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New Housing Bills and You

House bills were passed in response to the rising housing crisis during this year's legislative session. Here is how they can help you make a difference (and how we can help you with that too!) 👇

Overview of House Bills:

  • House Bill 1110 will legalize the construction of duplexes and fourplexes in cities meeting certain requirements. You can read more about the details in this article from Beresford Booth PLLC.

  • House Bill 1337 calls for the adoption or amendment of municipal zoning regulations to allow at least two ADUs on lots located in districts that meet certain requirements. You can read more about the details in this article from Beresford Booth PLLC.

In light of these changes, we asked our friend Bill Kessler, an attorney at Beresford Booth PLLC, to weigh in on some common questions that homeowners may have:

Q: What is the most important thing that homeowners should be aware of regarding the new housing legislation and the potential expansion of their properties?

A: "If you are a homeowner in the greater Puget Sound region, the new legislation may allow you to construct (a) one or two Accessory Dwelling Units on your property (“ADUs”), and/or (b) convert your house into either a duplex, triplex or four-plex."

Q: What legal considerations should homeowners be aware of when acting upon the new legislation?

A: "If you want to improve your property based on the new legislation, first contact an attorney to determine your property’s eligibility for the construction of either ADUs or a duplex/triplex/fourplex."

Q: What services can Beresford Booth provide to assist homeowners in navigating these changes?

A: "We can advise on your legal authority to complete the desired project, including the effect of an HOA. We can also help you determine if you should complete legal work in conjunction with construction, such as LLC formation and/or obtaining a state or city business license prior to leasing the property."

Q: What legal contracts should homeowners consider if renting out an ADU on their property?

A: "Homeowners should definitely sign a properly-drafted Lease with any ADU tenant."

Q: How should homeowners navigate estate planning with increased property values and new income available?

A: "Washington is home to the nation’s highest state estate tax (i.e. state “death tax”). As your net worth grows, it is important to take oftentimes simple steps to ensure your estate planning documents (i.e. Wills or Trusts) help you minimize tax exposure. Our firm can help you take those steps."

Q: When will these new bills come into practice?

A: "The new statutes became effective in late July 2023. They require each subject city and county to incorporate the new laws into such city/county’s Comprehensive Plan during its next scheduled review period. The next scheduled updates are in 2024, 2025, 2026, and 2027 depending on the individual city/county."

Q: Is there any other information you think would be valuable for homeowners to know?

A: "These new laws are an excellent opportunity for many homeowners to transform their homes into revenue sources. But the job needs to be done right. In my profession, I frequently encounter damage caused by fly-by-night contractors. With a proven and experienced contractor such as MacCoy Home Solutions, you can ensure the construction process is efficient and economical."

Have more questions for Bill Kessler? Contact him at 425.776.4100 or check out his bio page for more information! Interested in receiving a FREE estimate on your home's expansion project? Submit your project details here!

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