The City of Portland is seeing major changes in tenant and renter protection law and rights with contention on both sides. As a property owner or investor, it’s important to know how legislation put forth by the Portland Housing Bureau can directly affect your property portfolio.
Last month we highlighted how a tenant protections bill that would have banned no-cause evictions in Oregon died in the Senate. However, there are many moving pieces in this puzzle and making sure a fair solution is put forth is paramount for continued growth and investment in the city.
We’ve learned that a six-month extension has been given to a renter protection law that was set to expire this October. The move to extend means that tenants who are issued no-cause evictions, or who move out when their rent is hiked by 10 percent or more, can continue to expect payments of between $2,900 and $4,500 well into next year.
According to the Portland Mercury, “Two Portland landlords, Phillip Owen and Michael Feves, have challenged that law in court, arguing it amounts to illegal rent control, among other things.”
Attorney, John DiLorenzo, said in a statement, “We still strongly believe the ordinance will only aggravate Portland’s housing crisis.” Referencing the recent appeal, he went on to say, “The court failed to see it for what it is – disguised rent control, which violates state statutes and the Oregon Constitution.”
Protests and opposition continue, as Portland citizens and activists demonstrate against no-cause evictions, while property landlords, owners, and investors all feel they should have some recourse and control over their own properties without suffering major penalties.
Some Commissioners who introduced the relocation payment ordinance believe property owner opposition is unwarranted. In a recent statement made by Commissioner Eudaly, “It is disappointing that DiLorenzo and the landlord lobby continue to waste time and money fighting the city in its efforts to stabilize families in their homes. Their time might be better spent helping us find additional solutions to the housing crisis instead of trying to take away the only tool we have to help vulnerable people.”
However, many believe that the health of the city and future urban growth it dependent on allowing the housing market to growth naturally based on the laws of supply and demand. No one wishes to put families out on the street, but there are alternative methods which some feel would be more effective in nature.
One method in particular is to expand the Urban Growth Boundary.
In the end, there’s no telling how long it will take for an appeal to play out, but it’s likely that by the time a ruling is issued, Portland’s policy will have changed. A lengthy list of changes to the law has already been presented.
Of these changes, the Portland Mercury reports the bureau appeared to be favoring changes which, “included offering relocation assistance only to tenants with rents below a certain monthly threshold, changes to how information about the law is disseminated to the public, and exemptions regulated affordable housing providers in some scenarios.”
If you have questions about how these legislative shifts in the Portland marketplace could impact the management of your residential investment portfolio, we’d love to offer a complimentary assessment and get you in touch with one of our property management experts.
At InterWest Properties, we’re committed to keeping you informed and representing property owners when it comes to their rights as real estate investors. If you’d like to speak with one of our Portland property experts, please reach out and give us a call: (503) 256-2323