Real Estate May 26, 2015

City reports are in the news

The Santa Barbara County Grand Jury published a report this month regarding the inconsistent and unreliable nature of zoning information reports (ZIRs) which the City of Santa Barbara has for quite some time required on all home sales within city limits. Subsequent articles have been written by much of Santa Barbara’s news media. The Grand Jury’s report is quite detailed and eye opening, going into the history, original intent, inconsistencies, and currently outdated practice of the mandated ZIRs. To view the full report click here.

As Santa Barbara’s leading real estate company in home sales volume Village Properties has been instrumental in providing information that the Grand Jury has used to investigate and draw useful conclusions regarding the current ZIR process. There are 10 important findings and recommendations at the end of the Grand Jury’s report, in which a request for response by the City of Santa Barbara City Council is asked for within 90 days. One of the recommendations is that ZIRs become once again voluntary and for information purposes only as they were at their inception in 1974. Another is that the city certify each ZIR’s accuracy along with training their technicians well enough to do so.

The ZIR has been a significant part of the buying and selling process in Santa Barbara for a long time. We’re happy to see that the topic is getting attention and in the news so that constructive steps can be taken for improvement. I look forward to keeping you up-to-date with how this process may affect your next transaction in Santa Barbara and appreciate your inquiries.