Friday, June 30, 2017

Housing, Again


We should realize that our housing stock is actually three different market forces. 


The first is basic housing-people living in a home where they have a mortgage or have been fortunate enough to pay off. 
One family, one home. 

The second market force is the housing that is second homes. For people affluent enough, they can hold a home off of the rental market for sporadic use, all while being able to deduct the mortgage interest off of their taxes. Let's remove that deduction and allow the free market to determine how many of those homes remain sporadically used. 

The third market force is the rental market. In Washington state, those rentals exist in a realm between commerce and investment.
Even though they are rented, for great income, that income pays NO B&O taxes. Every other business in WA must pay B&O on the gross income. 
How about we establish a registry of these rentals, establish a B&O tax amount and fund homeless/low income housing from the proceeds, recreating the bottom and missing middle homes in the communities.

Trying to tax individuals to pay for schools without looking at the many ways that our tax structure already supports funneling money upwards is like trying to bail out the Titanic.

Edit
Gene Hart Jean, for the second housing stock, by what method are you proposing we "remove that deduction"?
Jean M. LaytonIt would have to be removed at the National level since it is Federal tax deduction. Our members of Congress should bring it up. After all the Republicans are eager to make people pay their own way, eliminating a tax deduction is likely in this Congress. 

Oh wait, most members of Congress actually have more than one home.