RESPRO Releases Survey of State Affiliated Business Laws
|November 28, 2007|
WASHINGTON, -- The Real Estate Services Providers Council, Inc. (RESPRO) has announced the publication of its bi-annual Survey of State Affiliated Business Laws, a survey of state laws and regulations that affect the ability of real estate brokers, home builders, mortgage companies, and title/settlement service firms to offer one-stop shopping for home buyers and owners through affiliated business arrangements such as wholly-owned subsidiaries, joint ventures, and partnerships.
"This is the most comprehensive State Survey that RESPRO has published in its history," said RESPRO Executive Director Sue Johnson. "It should be helpful to companies contemplating whether to open an affiliated business in a particular state by identifying laws in that state that could affect its operation."
According to a 2004 study by Weston Edwards & Associates, most of the nation's top realty firms and homebuilders offer a diversified menu of services (mortgage, title, and/or homeowners insurance) through affiliated businesses or marketing agreements. At the federal level, affiliated businesses must comply with the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), which requires that the consumer be notified of the affiliation and which prohibits tying arrangements and illegal referral fees among affiliated companies.
The State Survey, which was written by Jay N. Varon, Esq., and Wendy K. Arends, Esq. of Foley & Lardner, LLP, covers state laws and regulations that go beyond RESPA. These laws are categorized in three areas: