HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

840

THIRTY-SECOND LEGISLATURE, 2023

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

relating to real estate transactions.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. As reflected in Act 32, Session Laws of Hawaii 2017, the legislature recognizes that climate change is not only real, but it is also the overriding challenge of the twenty-first century and one of the priority issues of the legislature. Climate change poses immediate and long-term threats to the State's economy, sustainability, and security, and its residents' way of life.

The legislature recognized the existential threat of sea level rise to real property and, by Act 179, Session Laws of Hawaii 2021, amended section 508D-15, Hawaii Revised Statutes, to require mandatory seller disclosures in real property transactions to include a notification that residential real property lies within the sea level rise exposure area. Research published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration shows that sea levels in Hawaii will continue to rise, yet sea level rise has no detectable effect on valuations or sales data on real property. The lack of a sea level rise discount indicates that purchasers may be under-prepared for the future challenges and implications of sea level rise and the ancillary effects of coastal erosion, future flooding, inundation, and storm surge.

The purpose of this Act is to further strengthen protections for prospective purchasers of residential property within the shoreline area by requiring the seller to disclose:

(1) All permitted and unpermitted erosion control structures on the parcel or on state land adjacent to the parcel;

(2) The annual coastal erosion rate for the applicable zoning lot; and

(3) The actual distance from the shoreline of all structures on the parcel at the time disclosure is made.

SECTION 2. Section 508D-15, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:

"508D-15 Notification required; ambiguity. (a) When residential real property lies:

(1) Within the boundaries of a special flood hazard area as officially designated on flood maps promulgated by the National Flood Insurance Program of the Federal Emergency Management Agency for the purposes of determining eligibility for emergency flood insurance programs;

(2) Within the boundaries of the noise exposure area shown on maps prepared by the department of transportation in accordance with Federal Aviation Regulation part 150, Airport Noise Compatibility Planning (14 C.F.R. part 150), for any public airport;

(3) Within the boundaries of the Air Installation Compatible Use Zone of any Air Force, Army, Navy, or Marine Corps airport as officially designated by military authorities;

(4) Within the anticipated inundation areas designated on the department of defense's emergency management tsunami inundation maps; or

(5) Within the sea level rise exposure area as designated by the Hawaii climate change mitigation and adaptation commission or its successor,

subject to the availability of maps that designate the five areas by tax map key (zone, section, parcel), the seller shall include the material fact information in the disclosure statement provided to the buyer subject to this chapter. Each county shall provide, where available, maps of its jurisdiction detailing the five designated areas specified in this subsection. The maps shall identify the properties situated within the five designated areas by tax map key number (zone, section, parcel) and shall be of a size sufficient to provide information necessary to serve the purposes of this section. Each county shall provide legible copies of the maps and may charge a reasonable copying fee.

(b) When residential real property lies within the shoreline area as identified by official tax maps, the seller shall include as material fact information in the disclosure statement provided to the buyer:

(1) All permitted and unpermitted erosion control structures on the parcel or on state land adjacent to the parcel, including expiration dates of permitted structures and any notices of alleged violation and fines for expired permits or unpermitted structures;

(2) The annual coastal erosion rate for the applicable zoning lot as described in the maps on the Hawaii shoreline change tool, developed by the University of Hawaii at Manoa school of ocean and earth science and technology and the Pacific Islands ocean observing system, or its successor maps; and

(3) The actual distance of the dwelling from the vegetation line for all sandy shoreline parcels, as mapped and included on the Hawaii sea level rise viewer.

[(b)] (c) When it is questionable whether residential real property lies within any of the designated areas referred to in subsection (a) due to the inherent ambiguity of boundary lines drawn on maps of large scale, the ambiguity shall be construed in favor of the seller; provided that a good faith effort has been made to determine the applicability of subsection (a) to the subject real property.

[(c)] (d) Except as required under subsections (a) [and], (b), and (c), and as required under section 508D-3.5, the seller shall have no duty to examine any public record when preparing a disclosure statement."

SECTION 3. This Act does not affect rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun before its effective date.

SECTION 4. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

 

INTRODUCED BY:

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Report Title:

Residential Real Property Transactions; Mandatory Seller Disclosures; Shoreline Area; Erosion Control Structures

 

Description:

When residential real property lies within the shoreline area, mandates the seller to include in the disclosure statement notification of all existing permitted and unpermitted erosion control structures on the parcel or on state land adjacent to the parcel, the annual coastal erosion rate, and the actual distance of the dwelling from the vegetation line for all sandy shoreline parcels.

 

 

 

The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.