Bill Summary for H 781 (2015-2016)

Summary date: 

Apr 16 2015

Bill Information:

View NCGA Bill Details2015-2016 Session
House Bill 781 (Public) Filed Tuesday, April 14, 2015
AN ACT TO AMEND THE VACATION RENTAL ACT TO CLARIFY THE ROLE OF REAL ESTATE BROKERS IN TRANSACTIONS BETWEEN LANDLORDS AND TENANTS AND TO PROTECT MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES BY ALLOWING TERMINATION OF RENTAL AGREEMENTS UPON TRANSFER OR REDEPLOYMENT AND TO CLARIFY THE PROCEDURE FOR AWARDING AND COLLECTING CERTAIN COURT FEES IN EVICTION PROCEEDINGS.
Intro. by Tine, D. Hall.

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Bill summary

Amends GS 42A-4, the definitions section for the Vacation Rental Act, adding and defining advanced payments and landlord.

Amends GS 42A-16(a) concerning advanced payments, providing that a real estate broker can disburse from advanced rents any management fee earned as determined by the written agency agreement. Specifies procedures in the event a refund is due to the tenant. 

Amends GS 42A-19(b) concerning the transfer of property subject to a vacation rental agreement, providing that a real estate broker, if holding advanced rents at the time of the termination of the landlord's interest, can deduct earned management fees from the advanced rents transferred to the landlord's successor in interest. If such a deduction is made, the landlord is responsible to the successor in interest for the amount deducted. 

Amends GS 42A-31, Landlord to provide fit premises, adding clarifying language to the requirement to comply with the building and housing code, providing that no new requirement is imposed if a structure is exempt from a current building or housing code. Adds a requirement that landlords of a residential vacation rental must provide a minimum of one operable carbon monoxide alarm per rental unit per level, approved and certified as specified. Includes several other provisions concerning the installation and maintenance of the carbon monoxide alarms. Provides that the carbon monoxide requirement only applies to units having a fossil fuel burning heater, appliance, or fireplace or any attached garage. Provides that operable detectors installed before January 1, 2015, are deemed to be in compliance with this requirement. 

Enacts GS 42A-33, Responsibilities and liability of real estate brokers, establishing five responsibilities that a real estate broker has when managing a vacation rental property on behalf of a landlord, including verifying that the landlord has installed operable smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms. Exempts such real estate brokers from liability as a party in any civil action between the landlord and tenant if they fail to identify the landlord of the property in the vacation rental agreement.

Enacts GS 42A-37, Early termination of vacation rental agreement by military personnel, allowing members of the Armed Forces who have executed a vacation rental agreement to cancel the agreement if they receive (1) an order for deployment with a military unit overlapping the rental period or (2) permanent change of station orders to relocate before the beginning of the rental period by providing a written notice of termination within ten calendar days of receiving the orders. Requires copies of the orders or written verification by a commanding officer for cancellation. Includes various other provisions regarding the permitted cancellation, including that this termination right extends to a military member's spouse.

Amends GS 42-36.2(a) concerning execution of writs for possession of property, making a clarifying change.

Enacts subsection GS 42-44(c1) making conforming changes to remedies, penalties, and limitations, exempting real estate brokers from liability as a party in any civil action between the landlord and tenant if they fail to identify the landlord of the property in the vacation rental agreement. 

Amends GS 42-46(f) concerning court-appearance fees, clarifying that if a tenant appeals the judgment of the magistrate as provided for in this section, then any fee awarded by a magistrate to the landlord under this subsection will be vacated. Makes clarifying changes to the catchline of this section.

Effective July 1, 2015. 

 

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