OREGON LAW – TENANT PROTECTION

A new Portland housing policy went into effect in October 2017.  The law requires landlords to pay tenant a relocation fee if tenants are evicted without cause or if they must move due to a rent increase of more than 10% in a 12-month period.  The fee can range from $2,900 to $4,500, depending on the number of bedrooms in the rental.  Landlords with only one rental and landlords who are moving back into their homes after an absence of three years or less are exempt.  Oregon is considering other measures to protect tenants.

If you own and rental or are listing a rental property for sale or lease, make sure you are aware of local and state laws.  This advice applies to all states and local jurisdictions. They are changing regularly!

We are here to help you and your clients with all aspects of the rental market. Please contact us for further assistance!

There are no warranties, express or implied, including fitness for a particular purpose, made with respect to this communication. Nothing found herein should be construed as an attempt to offer or render a legal opinion or otherwise engage in the practice of law. You should obtain the advice of an attorney well versed in these matters.
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THE GROWING RENTAL MARKET

Single-family rentals – either detached homes or townhomes – are developing faster than any other portion of the housing market. Single-family rental homes and townhomes make up 35% of the country’s 44 million rental units, compared with 31% in 2006. *

The majority of single-family renters are millennials:

  • Many put traveling as a priority and want flexibility in both job and home location.

  • Student loans and stagnant incomes make it harder to save for a down payment.

  • Those who came of age during the housing bubble may not see homeownership as the best way to invest their money. The number of renters aged over 55 grew by 28% between 2009 and 2015. From 2010 to 2016, single-family rental households in the U.S. increased by nearly 2 million; 1.26 million of those renters were 34 to 65 years old, while just under a half million werTenants at house sizede 65 or older.

Small-time landlords now dominate the market. Investors who have fewer than 10 units own 87% of all single-family rentals, while investors who have only one rental unit own 45%.

We are here to help you and your clients with all aspects of the rental market. Please contact us for further assistance!

 There are no warranties, express or implied, including fitness for a particular purpose, made with respect to this communication. Nothing found herein should be construed as an attempt to offer or render a legal opinion or otherwise engage in the practice of law. You should obtain the advice of an attorney well versed in these matters.

*https://www.urban.org/urban-wire/five-things-might-surprise-you-about-fastest-growing-segment-housing-markethe

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HAPPY THANKSGIVING

Happy Thanksgiving 2014

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IT’S COLD OUTSIDE!

Now is a good time to prepare tenants and rental properties for cold weather!

Frozen House

  • Service HVAC systems.  Service techs should also make sure that tenants know how to change furnace filters.

  • Winterize sprinkler systems.

  • Put spigot covers on all outside faucets.

  • Tenants should know how to shut off the water to the property and who to contact if a pipe freezes.

  • Tenants also need to be reminded to keep heat on in the property at all times, including when out of the home.

We are here to help with all aspects of the rental market.  Please contact us for further assistance!

 There are no warranties, express or implied, including fitness for a particular purpose, made with respect to this communication. Nothing found herein should be construed as an attempt to offer or render a legal opinion or otherwise engage in the practice of law. You should obtain the advice of an attorney well versed in these matters.

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SHORT SALES & RENTAL APPROVAL

It’s not the short sale in and of itself that’s going to hurt a rental Credit Reportapplicant, it’s the credit that’s, “shot to hell.”  We are required to have established criteria by which any potential tenant will be judged.  If tenants do not meet those criteria, we cannot rent to them.  The goal is to prevent discrimination – the same standards are applied to everyone rather than picking and choosing.  Applicants often want us to “hear their story” when their application is denied or they are required to provide an additional deposit or a co-signer.  While we often sympathize with applicants’ struggles, we can’t base decisions on that sympathy; we must consistently apply the quantifiable criteria without bias.

We are here to help you and your clients with all aspects of the rental market. Please contact us for further assistance!

There are no warranties, express or implied, including fitness for a particular purpose, made with respect to this communication. Nothing found herein should be construed as an attempt to offer or render a legal opinion or otherwise engage in the practice of law. You should obtain the advice of an attorney well versed in these matters.
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Real Estate Agents & Property Management

Did you know that although property managers are also real estate brokers, a good property manager needs different skills than successful sales brokers?  In an article about sales brokers and property managers*, the author says that sales brokers:

“count on an indeterminable blend of personality, salesmanship, and trust to do their jobs well. In other words, “people pleasing” is high on the list of desirable qualities for real estate agents.”

“Property managers, on the other hand, often end up mediating between the landlord and the tenant.  They need the ability to manage an ongoing relationship with both owners and tenants, balancing the needs and priorities of both parties.  This must be done while also complying with fair housing regulations, Landlord-Tenant laws as well as local codes and regulations.  While property managers would like to please both landlords and tenants, the reality is that this isn’t going to happen.  Someone will have to pay for the new carpet and the cost may be split between owner and tenant, thus angering both parties.”

*Chris Thorman, “What Real Estate Agents Need to Know about Property Management.”

We are here to help you and your clients with all aspects of the rental market. Please contact us for further assistance!

There are no warranties, express or implied, including fitness for a particular purpose, made with respect to this communication. Nothing found herein should be construed as an attempt to offer or render a legal opinion or otherwise engage in the practice of law. You should obtain the advice of an attorney well versed in these matters.
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PRE-CLOSING RENTAL AGREEMENTS

Pre-closing lease/rental agreements are specifically excluded from the Washington State Landlord/Tenant Act.* Even if you have a lease agreement in addition to the purchase and sale agreement, if you proceed under normal eviction statutes the court may rule that you brought the wrong type of action and dismiss the case.

We are here to help you and your clients comply with all aspects of rental laws. Please contact us for further assistance!

There are no warranties, express or implied, including fitness for a particular purpose, made with respect to this communication. Nothing found herein should be construed as an attempt to offer or render a legal opinion or otherwise engage in the practice of law. You should obtain the advice of an attorney well versed in these matters.

*RCW 59.18.040(2)

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TENANT SCREENING

newproject

When an applicant’s credit is pulled, we do not review a copy of the applicant’s credit score.  Any applicant who is denied or who is required to pay additional move in costs (higher deposit or last month’s rent) or who is required to provide a qualified co-signer, must receive a notice called an adverse action notice.  If tenant screening includes a credit score, additional disclosures are required in the adverse action notice. Credit scores may not be shared between applicants.

The additional disclosures required when a credit score is reviewed include the following:

  • A statement that a credit score is a number that takes into account information in a consumer report, that the consumer’s credit score was used to set the terms of credit offered, and that a credit score can change over time to reflect changes in the consumer’s credit history;
  • The credit score used by the creditor in making the credit decision;
  • The range of possible credit scores under the model used to generate the credit score;
  • The key factors that adversely affected the credit score;
  • The date on which the credit score was created; and
  • The name of the consumer reporting agency or other person that provided the credit score.

Instead of reviewing the credit score, we review the applicant’s credit report plus the screening company verifies employment and income and checks rental, criminal and eviction histories.

We are here to help you and your clients with all aspects of the rental market. Please contact us for further assistance!
There are no warranties, express or implied, including fitness for a particular purpose, made with respect to this communication. Nothing found herein should be construed as an attempt to offer or render a legal opinion or otherwise engage in the practice of law. You should obtain the advice of an attorney well versed in these matters.
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TENANT RESPONSIBILITIES – Washington State

lease duties

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CLEANING FEES – WHO PAYS?

broom and pailIn Washington State, if a landlord charges a non-refundable cleaning fee, the tenant cannot be charged for any routine cleaning that exceeds the amount of the fee. If cleaning costs exceed the amount of the cleaning fee, the owner will have to pay the difference. On the other hand, if the tenant is charged a refundable damage/security deposit, the tenant can be charged for any overage.

RCW 59.18.130 (10) The tenant shall not be charged for normal cleaning if he or she has paid a nonrefundable cleaning fee.

We are here to help you and your clients with all aspects of the rental market. Please contact us for further assistance!

There are no warranties, express or implied, including fitness for a particular purpose, made with respect to this communication. Nothing found herein should be construed as an attempt to offer or render a legal opinion or otherwise engage in the practice of law. You should obtain the advice of an attorney well versed in these matters.
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