Daily Real Estate News **| **May 31, 2007
Town Holds Agents Liable for Rental Code Violations
The town of Islip on Long Island, N.Y., has passed a law that local real estate practitioners say holds them liable for any code violations in the properties they list, lease, rent or sell.
Town councilman Steven Flotteron says the change merely holds practitioners liable for illegal rentals; He says it requires practitioners to call the town about their rental listings to make sure property owners have a rental permit.
But the new law also says real estate practitioners who sell any “dwelling unit” must make sure it is in “full compliance with the Code of the Town of Islip.”
Long Island Board of REALTORS® president Linda Bonarelli said the language of the revised law requires practitioners to act as building inspectors and enforce town code on both rental and sale properties.
“It places an unfair burden on [practitioners],” she said. “It’s making us the code police.”
A first offense can cost up to $2,000 and 15 days in jail, according to the law, which was approved by the town council last week. Three or more offenses in five years specifies a $5,000 fine.