Assemblywoman Christy Smith, D-Santa Clarita, speaks to the crowd after being sworn in at Oak Hills Elementary School in Valencia. Signal file photo Dan Watson/The Signal

Smith’s homeowner bill gets Newsom’s signature

L.A. County’s Enhanced Homeowner Notification Program will remain in place for at least another decade thanks to the passage of Assembly Bill 1106.

AB 1106 was crafted by Assemblywoman Christy Smith, D-Santa Clarita, in an effort to extend the program’s sunset date, so the Los Angeles County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs can continue to provide fraud prevention information and free counseling services to property owners and tenants, according to a news release from Smith’s office.

The Enhanced Homeowner Notification Program was initially authorized in 1992 to address foreclosures related to falsified real estate loan documents, according to the Senate Rules Committee, but the program would later be enhanced so Department of Consumer and Business Affairs officials could help residents navigate predatory real estate practices, prevent home foreclosures and facilitate successful loan modifications.

“The Department of Consumer and Business Affairs’ Foreclosure Prevention Program has saved over 475 homes from foreclosure, helped homeowners save more than $30 million in successful loan modifications and helped them with fraud avoidance,” said Joseph Nicchita, director of Los Angeles County Department of Consumer and Business Affairs.

“It’s no secret California is facing a housing crisis, even during this period of economic expansion,” Smith said in Monday’s release.

“This bill provides a safety net for homeowners who have worked hard to purchase and maintain their homes,” she added. “I’m immensely proud to partner with the Los Angeles Department of Consumer Business Affairs to prevent foreclosure and real estate fraud, promote tenant protections and honor the dignity of work.”

AB 1106 takes effect on Jan. 1, 2020, according to Mondays release, and it’s Smith’s third bill to be signed into law.

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