WHO’S ON FIRST???

In our opinion, the best policy for screening potential rental tenants is first come, first served – a policy which the City of Seattle just imposed on landlords.  The law goes into effect on January 1, 2017.

1st come first served sized croppedHowever, our policy is that if multiple applications are received at approximately the same time, i.e., no application has been submitted for screening, then the following can be taken into consideration in choosing one application over another:

–          Move in date

–          Rent offered

–          Length of lease offered

–          Whether the applicant has pets

If tenants meet screening criteria we do not try to determine if one applicant is more qualified than another – either the applicant is qualified or the applicant is not.

We have been told by an attorney involved in the drafting of the law that landlords will still be able to choose between applicants based on these specific factors, as long as the landlord communicates this prior to accepting applications.

The process of selecting tenants is becoming more complicated, with greater potential liability, even outside of the Seattle City limits.

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.

 

Posted in Did you know... | Leave a comment

BUYER OF RENTAL PROPERTY

A buyer of a rental property cannot give notice to vacate to the tenant until the buyer actually owns the property. After closing any notice is subject to the terms of the lease as well as local and state laws.  Also, neither the listing nor the selling broker has the authority to give notice to the tenant at any point.  Although this all seems obvious, sometimes the parties get overzealous and forget.

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.

Posted in Did you know... | Leave a comment

WHAT IS “NORMAL” ANYWAY?

Washington state law says a tenant cannot be charged for any normal wear and tear that occurs to the rental property.  Even if a tenant does damage to the property the cost of repair or replacement may need to be depreciated.  For instance, HUD says that interior paint in a rental has a life expectancy of two years and carpeting has a life of six years.  Based on this, if a tenant has been in the property for more than two years, routine painting would be considered normal wear and tear.  However, if walls need to be primed before painting because the tenant heavily marked the walls or if there are holes in the walls needing repair, those preparations would be damage and a tenant expense.

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.

Posted in Did you know... | 1 Comment

Criminal History

Bad Cat sizedCaution must be used when denying tenancy on the basis of the criminal history of the applicant.  HUD recently issued guidelines which indicate that a blanket policy denying tenancy if the applicant has any criminal history would be considered a violation of the Fair Housing Act.  Instead, any landlord who denies tenancy based on criminal history must take into account the type of crime as well as when it occurred and must be able to show that any screening policy regarding criminal history, “is necessary to achieve a substantial, legitimate, nondiscriminatory interest of the provider.” In addition, HUD disapproved the practice of denying tenancy based only on an arrest-without-conviction basis because arrests are not proof of guilt.

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.

Posted in Did you know... | Leave a comment

Accessory Dwelling Unit

An owner-occupied property with an accessory dwelling unit (ADU) may be considered a duplex if sold to an investor who rents both units. Typically, it is easier to get zoning permission for an owner-occupied property with an ADU than for a duplex.  If a rental property is found to be in violation of local codes, a landlord could be required to pay relocation costs – and possibly more – for the displaced tenant.

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.

Posted in Did you know... | 1 Comment

SEATTLE MULTIFAMILY REGULATION – (one of many)

In the city of Seattle, owners of some multi-family properties are required to notify the city prior to listing the property for sale.  When the property contains five or more units and at least one of the units is considered affordable to a household earning 80% or less of area median income, the owner must notify the city of the intent to sell at least 60 days prior to listing the property.  A penalty of up to $500 may be assessed against owners who fail to comply.

The Commercial Brokers Association recommends that brokers notify sellers of this requirement in writing.  More information can be found here:

http://www.seattle.gov/housing/intent-to-sell

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.
Posted in Did you know... | Leave a comment

WHY US?

pm means more 1

Image | Posted on by | Leave a comment

HAVE A HAPPY 4TH!!!

happy 4th from cbbain pm

Image | Posted on by | Leave a comment

PETS

According to the Humane Society, 72% of all rental households in America have a pet. And, according to Realtor.com, 52% of all households in Seattle have a dog and “four-legged pets outnumber babies.”

Allowing pets on a case-by-case basis not only greatly increases the potential tenant base, it also gives the owner more control over which pet(s) will occupy the property. Saying no to all pets increases the chance that a tenant will try to sneak an animal onto the property.  If the landlord indicates a willingness to consider pets, tenants are more likely to be honest and then the landlord can say yes or no based on whether the animal has been fixed as well as the size, age, number and breed.A Kitten

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 or this little kitten who probably knows more about this than any lawyer anyway!!!

MEOW!!

Posted in Did you know... | Leave a comment

HAPPY SUMMER!!

sign post summertime with logo

Image | Posted on by | Leave a comment