California SB2 and What Is It

January, 2018

New Affordable Housing and Job Acts Fee, also known as SB2

  • Establishes permanent, ongoing sources of funding dedicated to affordable housing development
  • Money to be placed in Building Homes and Jobs Fund created with the CA State Treasury

New Fees

  • Commencing January 1, 2018, and except as provided in paragraph (2), in addition to any other recording fees specified in this code, a fee of $75.00 shall be paid at the time of recording of every real estate instrument, paper, or notice required or permitted by law to be recorded, except those expressly exempted from payment of recording fees, per each single transaction per parcel of real property. The fee imposed by this section shall not exceed $225.00.

Documents Covered

Real estate instrument, paper, or notice means a document relating to real property, including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Grant Deed
  • Trustee’s Deed
  • Deed of Trust
  • Reconveyance
  • Quit Claim Deed
  • Fictitious Deed of Trust
  • Assignment of Deed of Trust
  • Request for Notice of Default
  • Abstract of Judgment
  • Subordination Agreement
  • Declaration of Homestead
  • Abandonment of Homestead
  • Notice of Default
  • Release or Discharge
  • Easement
  • Notice of Trustee Sale
  • Notice of Completion
  • UCC Financing Statement
  • Mechanic’s Lien
  • Map
  • Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions


The fee described in paragraph (1) shall not be imposed on any real estate instrument, paper, or notice recorded in connection with a transfer subject to the imposition of a documentary transfer tax, or notice recorded with the transfer of real property that is a residential dwelling to an owner-occupier.

New County Created Forms

  • Some counties have created a coversheet for use in documenting whether the new fees are chargeable on a document.   The coversheet is recorded concurrently and may require an additional recording fee (approximately $3.00).
  • Where a coversheet is required, someone must prepare it.
  • It is reasonable to believe that the fee or exemption will need to be reflected on the actual document

County-by-County Interpretations 

  • Coversheet requirement
  • Fee name
  • Fee being charged per document or per parcel
  • Counties determine which documents are “related”
  • Fee being charged on document with transfer tax exemption language
  • Additional fees for documents with “multiple titles”

Impact on New Lenders

  • Additional fees must be quoted on Loan Estimate and/or Closing Disclosure within tolerance to be chargeable to the consumer
  • Recording fees are in the 10% tolerance category under TRID
  • So far, we’re hearing that many lenders are reluctant to add the fees to their documents
  • Estimating high, but within reasonable range for specific transaction recommended
  • Imperative that lender’s instructions and disclosures be reviewed to determine risks
  • Verbal and written push back likely appropriate and/or necessary to minimize future demands for reimbursement
  • If the actual numbers don’t match, who is responsible for the difference if additional funds are owed
  • Notification to lender on changes necessary to stay compliant with TRID re-disclosure requirements

Impact on Payoffs

  • It is expected that payoff lenders will be adding these additional fees to their payoff demand
  • Most conventional lenders record both a Substitution of Trustee and a Reconveyance as separate documents so it is reasonable to expect an additional $150.00
  • Sometimes an assignment must be recorded also which would be an additional $75.00 fee
  • It has been reported that some payoff lenders are indicating that they will give the documents to the borrower to record to avoid paying the fees
  • Where payoff documents are being recorded after the closing, the recorders’ offices are unlikely to consider them part of the same transaction for the $225.00 cap


Thank you to Jennifer Felten, Esq for this article