The New York Times is reporting, that for the first time ever, the federal government is going to require real estate companies in two distinct areas of the country to disclose names behind all-cash transactions in real estate deals. The measure, supposedly temporary, will target properties purchased in New York City and Miami-Dade County, Florida in cash meeting certain thresholds. In NYC buyers in sales of more than $3 million are to be reported and in Miami-Dade County it’s on sales greater than $1 million. The premise for these efforts is based on reducing crime & money laundering, however it will undoubtedly encourage questions of government intrusion into private affairs as well as whether the “temporary” program will be further expanded.
“We are concerned about the possibility that dirty money is being put into luxury real estate,” said Ms. Calvery, the director of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, the Treasury unit running the initiative. “We think some of the bigger risk is around the least transparent transactions.”
For reference, let’s also take a quick look at the Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution:
“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”