Volz bill to protect homeowners from foreclosure passes Senate

'We need to do everything we can to keep people in their homes and away from the destructive cycle of homelessness,' says Volz

The Washington State Senate this week unanimously approved legislation designed to protect property tax payers from unnecessary foreclosures due to excessive penalties and interest rates.

Rep. Mike Volz, R-Spokane and sponsor of House Bill 1410, lauded the Senate's approval. However, because the Senate made minor changes, the bill now needs approval, or “concurrence,” from the state House of Representatives.

“Poverty and the financial effects of the COVID pandemic are not partisan issues,” said Volz. “Government – at any level – should not be reaping onerous taxes and fees from those struggling to pay their mortgages. This legislation brings some balance back into the equation by charging a reasonable interest rate on delinquent properties and eliminates the fee structure. We need to do everything we can to keep people in their homes and away from the destructive cycle of homelessness.”

Volz's legislation lowers the delinquent property tax interest rate on residential homes from 12% to 9% and eliminates late payment penalties.

Volz, who also serves as the Chief Deputy Treasurer for Spokane County, said the minor changes made in the Senate were acceptable and the House of Representatives should concur without delay.

“The Senate excluded commercial and large residential properties. I'm ok with this. The main goal is to get to the families and individuals struggling to pay their mortgages. Giving them some small relief by eliminating the late fees and removing the usury interest rates can mean the difference between finally catching up with their payments or being made homeless,” said Volz.

The bill also would take effect January 1, 2022, giving counties time to plan for the changes and implement the new interest and penalty structure.

The 105-day 2021 remote legislative session is scheduled to end April 25.

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Washington State House Republican Communications
houserepublicans.wa.gov