RENTAL APPROVAL?

The Fair Credit Reporting Act requires landlords to send written notice to a rental applicant not only if s/he is denied tenancy, but also when the tenant is conditionally approved.  An “adverse action notice” must be sent if any of the following occurs:

  • An application is rejected

  • An increased deposit is required

  • Last month’s rent is required when normally not required

  • A co-signer is required

The notice must include specific information regarding the applicant’s rights, which credit bureau was used and how the applicant can dispute the results.

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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MOST IMPORTANT RENTER GOALS!

The two most important factors for renters are location and price. Tenants at house sized According to a study by Apartment Guide, 62% of renters place the greatest importance on location.  When searching online, 44% of renters are looking for a place that fits their budget and 29% are looking for a place that meets location needs.  While nothing is more important than price, neighborhood, utilities, square footage, pet friendly and specific amenities were also important. Only 14% of renters say they’re willing to compromise on location and 15% say they’ll compromise on price, but 29% are willing to compromise on size.

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

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 not rely solely on this information. We encourage our clients to work with a lawyer experienced in commercial and/or residential real estate matters as they can be complicated and confusing.
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MONTH TO MONTH RENTAL AGREEMENT

At the end of a lease for a specific term, unless the lease is terminated, the lease automatically becomes a month-to-month rental agreement. All other terms of the initial lease remain in effect, even if no extension is put in writing.  Changes to the lease, including increases in rent, can be made with a 30-day notice.

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

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 not rely solely on this information. We encourage our clients to work with a lawyer experienced in commercial and/or residential real estate matters as they can be complicated and confusing.
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TENANT INCOME SOURCE

A new Washington State law went into effect September 30, 2018, making it illegal for landlords in Washington State to discriminate against tenants and would-be tenants based on their source of income.

Source of income includes:

  • Federal, state, and local public benefits, such as Social Security, Veteran’s benefits, retirement, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) or Aged, Blind and Disabled (ABD)

  • Rent subsidies from federal, state or local housing programs, such as the Section 8 voucher program, Share Aspire or Housing and Essential Needs (HEN)

  • Short-term rental assistance, for example from organizations like Catholic Community Services or Lutheran Community Services

A landlord who uses income in screening criteria can only consider the portion of rent the tenant is responsible for in determining if income is sufficient.

The law also offers help to landlords to recover costs for damages to the rental. If the tenant has a subsidy like Section 8, the landlord may be able to collect up to $5,000, paid for by the state, for repairs in excess of the deposit.

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

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 not rely solely on this information. We encourage our clients to work with a lawyer experienced in commercial and/or residential real estate matters as they can be complicated and confusing.
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LEASE TERMINATION BY TENANT

A tenant may terminate a lease if the tenant or a member of the tenant’s household is a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking and the tenant or household member has obtained a protection order or has reported the matter. The tenant must present a copy of the protection order or written record of a police report to the landlord and request termination of the lease within ninety days of the event.

A landlord may neither terminate, refuse to enter into a lease, nor refuse to renew a tenancy based on the status of the tenant or a member of the tenant’s household as a victim of domestic violence, sexual assault or stalking.

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

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 not rely solely on this information. We encourage our clients to work with a lawyer experienced in commercial and/or residential real estate matters as they can be complicated and confusing.
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PETS vs. SERVICE/COMFORT ANIMALS

Service AnimalRegulations which restrict* certain breeds of dogs don’t apply if proper documentation has been provided that an animal is an assistance animal.  These *restrictions apply to pets. A service or comfort animal is not a pet.  However, assistance animals cannot be a direct threat to the health or safety of others. If the landlord has documented proof that an animal (whether a restricted breed or otherwise) is a legitimate threat to other residents, employees, or to the property itself, that animal may be barred from the community. The key word here is DOCUMENTED. 

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

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 not rely solely on this information. We encourage our clients to work with a lawyer experienced in commercial and/or residential real estate matters as they can be complicated and confusing.
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TACOMA WASHINGTON – Rental Proposal

The city of Tacoma, Washington is considering a Just Cause Eviction Ordinance similar to Seattle’s.  The drafted provisions include:

  • 60-day notice requirement for rent increases

  • 60-day notice requirements for termination of tenancy

  • Relocation assistance ordinance which requires owners to host in-person meetings with tenants

  • Move-in fee installment payments

  • Requirement that owners inform tenants of any code violations at the property within the past 12 months – even if caused by the tenant

  • Requirement that owners provide an “information for tenants” packet to renters

While they consider these provisions, the city has passed an ordinance which requires landlords to give tenants a 90 days’ notice when tenancy is being terminated due to “demolition, substantial rehabilitation or change of use of a residential dwelling.”  This law goes into effect on September 30, 2018.

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

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 not rely solely on this information. We encourage our clients to work with a lawyer experienced in commercial and/or residential real estate matters as they can be complicated and confusing.
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RENT vs. BUY

According to Realtor.com’s July 2018 renting vs. buying report*, home prices rose more than three times faster than rents.  The monthly cost of owning a home rose 14% last year while the cost of renting rose by 4%.  According to the report:

  • Only 41 percent of the nation’s population lives in a county where a median-income family can afford to buy a home.

  • In July, buying a home was cheaper than renting in 35 percent of counties, compared to 44 percent of counties last year.

  • The top five counties where purchasing a home was more affordable than renting last month were: Clayton County, Ga.; Baltimore City, Md.; Wayne County, Mich.; Cumberland County, N.C.; and Madison County, Ill., with the share of income to buy being 4 percent to 14 percent lower than the share of income to rent.

  • Renting remains much less expensive than buying in Manhattan, N.Y.; Brooklyn, N.Y.; Monterey County, Calif.; San Mateo County, Calif.; and Santa Barbara County, Calif.

  • In the last year, 20 counties with 100,000+ residents flipped from being cheaper to buy to being cheaper to rent, three quarters of which were in the South and Midwest.

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

*https://www.realtor.com/research/july-2018-rent-vs-buy-report-home-prices-rise-three-times-faster-than-rents

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 not rely solely on this information. We encourage our clients to work with a lawyer experienced in commercial and/or residential real estate matters as they can be complicated and confusing.
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PROTECTED CLASS – Marital Status

Marital status is a protected class in Washington State.  Marital status includes being single, married, separated, engaged, widowed and divorced.  In the City of Seattle and in King County marital status includes cohabitating. This means that landlords must treat roommates or unmarried couples the same as married couples.  In other words, a landlord can’t limit tenants to what he or she defines as a family.

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

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 not rely solely on this information. We encourage our clients to work with a lawyer experienced in commercial and/or residential real estate matters as they can be complicated and confusing.
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INVESTOR LOANS with a catch

Freddie Mac has a new program that will offer lower cost financing to investors of apartments who agree to cap rent increases for the life of the loan. The goal is to create rent control by keeping units in private hands and controlling the rate of rent increases.

Recently investors have been buying less expensive buildings in need of renovation and then raising rents, resulting mid-priced apartment rents raising even faster than luxury units.  According to RealPage Inc., average rents for midrange Class B properties rose by nearly 20% from 2012 through 2017, while high-end, Class A rents rose by 16.6% on average.  This initiative will help Freddie Mac fulfill its mandate from the Federal Housing Finance Agency to lend to underserved communities.

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

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 not rely solely on this information. We encourage our clients to work with a lawyer experienced in commercial and/or residential real estate matters as they can be complicated and confusing.
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