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State Supreme Court Rules AGAINST Landlords!

Kentucky Leads The Nation Again!

Right here in Louisville, Kentucky, my hometown, a lawsuit against a landlord has made it all the way to our State Supreme Court resulting in another new case law against landlords. This ruling has spread like wildfire all over the U.S.A.

Here is the short version.

Tenant has a Rottweiler dog in a fenced rear yard. Dog gets out of the yard, runs across the street and attacks a little girl, tearing most of her face off.

Obviously, the girl’s family is tore all to pieces and sues both the tenant and the landlord.

The case ends up in our State Supreme Court and they ruled on this case just a few weeks ago.

In summary, the Kentucky Supreme Court, in their explanation of their ruling, sided with the girl’s family giving major consideration of who has the deep pockets. The court acknowledged most tenants do not have piles of cash and remarked the only opportunity for recourse for the little girl’s family would be the landlord.

As a result of their ruling a new “case law” was created making the landlord the true owner of any animal on the rental property, with or without the landlord’s permission. Don’t shoot me, I am the messenger.

FYI, because the dog escaped the fenced rear yard, the State Supreme Court ruled the landlord was not responsible for the animal when it is not on the rented property and ruled in favor of the landlord on this case because the dog was not on the property.

My concern is your insurance companies across America will jump on this bandwagon just like environmental hazards.

WHAT SHOULD YOU DO? I immediately created… Click Here for Full Video/Article (Members Only)

Short Video shows you how to find your next great Office Manager

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Raising annual rental license fees was one thing.  But when officials in Columbia, Missouri added yet another regulatory requirement, landlords cried foul.

According to a news report, the Columbia City Council proposed a law which will require landlords to complete an “occupancy disclosure” form at leasing, verifying each occupant, and placing it on file with the city.

Landlords expressed concern that not only would this new requirement be onerous, but it would force them to violate their tenants’ privacy by revealing sensitive information.

Over the past two years, landlords across the country have been slammed with a barrage of government regulatory requirements, from non-smoking disclosures in Oregon, to radon disclosures in Maine, to the most recent voter registration requirement in Madison.  In 2010, Athens, Georgia adopted an “education form” where landlords are required to apprise tenants of their civic duties, including the rules for littering and the city’s occupancy standards. Landlords are challenging that law in court.

City officials in Columbia say that the intent of their proposed disclosure law is to cut down on overcrowding in rental properties.

For landlords, it’s just one more burden that falls on their shoulders, leaving them vulnerable to fines for failing to police the local laws.

The proposal to increase rental licensing fees – nearly doubling them in some situations — was placed on hold pending a study of the city’s actual costs for a rental inspection program, according to the report.

City officials say they will continue to collect comments on the occupancy disclosure form and forward the public input to the City Council.

Landlord Training – Tenant Challenges Part VI

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The New One Cut Wonder!

Your Brand New Money Maker and Extra Income for Landlords and Property Managers

Brand Spanking New for both Me & You!

After having recently wrapped up my complete business makeover for my real estate business, including property management side, once again a another simple money maker has been implemented.

Last month while reviewing all of the monthly statements and our monthly resident newsletter, Beth and Shirley made the comment about how challenging it is for new residents to enroll in our Elite Lawn Service Program. This monthly fee is built into their rent. It includes professional lawn care service, leaf removal, and gutter cleaning.

Because we live in Louisville, Kentucky and have four seasons every year, some new residents would grumble and complain that the grass does not grow all year long.

Not so fast Scooter!

In addition to the lawn service, they get their gutters cleaned every year and they get twice a year leaf removal. Either way, this did not take off like I had hoped for.

During this meeting reviewing the resident newsletter, Beth and Shirley both mentioned many residents would like to sign up for Click Here for Full Video/Article (Members Only)

Ignorance of the Law is not Your Get Out of Jail Free Card!

An Everett, Washington landlord has been ordered to pay a $21,800 fine after failing to include a lead disclosure in his lease.
 
The landlord, who manages 26 units located in Bellingham, Washington, repeatedly leased properties to tenants over the course of several years without including the federally-mandated lead disclosures. The EPA brought the charges against him.

“People have the right to know about lead hazards prior to renting or buying a place to live,” said Rick Albright, Director of EPA’s Office of Air, Waste and Toxics in Seattle. “Sellers, landlords and property managers who do not properly notify the people who will live in these homes can face stiff penalties.”

The Disclosure Rule requires landlords, property management companies, real estate agencies, and sellers to inform potential lessees and purchasers of the presence of lead-based paint and lead-based paint hazards in pre-1978 housing. They must also provide the purchaser or lessee with a copy of the Lead Hazard Information Pamphlet, “Protect Your Family from Lead in Your Home” before entering into any lease or sales agreement, and keep records showing they have met the federal requirements.

This is not a new issue for landlords.

GOOD – A tenant in an apartment who Pays Rent Early Every Month and never calls or complains.

– now he is 600lbs and has a lot of trouble going up and down stairs.

– he lives in 3rd floor apartment

– says he has no friends except his “2 cats” (yes, 2 cats were allowed)

– his parents live 3 hours away.

ISSUE – Tenant in apartment below reports leak in her bathroom ceiling and there is terrible odor in the hall coming from this fellow’s apartment.

– Work Order scheduled for repairs

– Dan photos before and after.

– Photos show outrageous dirt, trash, cat crap everywhere.

– Our 20yr+ Pest Control guy who sprays for bugs in apartments refuses to re-enter apartment until cleaned up or this guy is gone.

– Our Air Conditioning Service Person reports same.

SOLUTION – proposed tenant enrolling in a weekly maid service to clean his apartment and report to office.

– at this time, tenant is agreeable and willing to pay.

– his re-inspection is scheduled for 3pm today.

Stay tuned for the next chapter to see what Tenant does to get results.

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More Americans are renting houses instead of buying them, a trend that could disrupt price affordability, analysts say.

With more homeowners unable to secure mortgages and uncertain about future finances, renting is the only sure-fire way to live in a single-family property, according to Capital Economics.

But as more Americans turn to home renting, the influx of demand is set to squeeze the nation’s rental supply, pushing monthly rents even higher.

“As a consequence of Americans being less willing and less able to buy a home, the number of households in rented accommodation is set to rise by at least 850,000 a year over the next few years,” said Paul Dales, senior economist with Capital Economics.

Dales’s said in his research that rental vacancy rates will fall again in the future, pushing prices up.

The median rent is already up to $712 per month—well above the average monthly mortgage cost of $647, Dales reported.

He estimates vacancies in the home-rental market will push average rental rates up as much as 5% by early 2013, compared to 2.4% in January.

“We expect the annual rate at which rents are rising will rise to 3% this year and remain at that level in 2013,” Dales said. “Assuming that the economic recovery gains firmer footing, in future years there is scope for rents to rise by around 4% a year.”

And as single-family renters head into the market, the supply of rentals is unlikely to meet new demand.

This reality is playing itself out in Denver, where the vacancy rate for home rentals fell from 3.4% in the third quarter to 2.1% in the fourth quarter. At the same time, the vacancy rate edged up slightly from the 2% level reported in the fourth quarter of 2010.

“The vacancy rate went up slightly year-over-year,” said Ryan McMaken, a spokesman for the Colorado Division of Housing. “That doesn’t mean much, though, because when you’re looking at vacancy rates below 3%, the bottom line is that the market is tight. For many people, it’s not easy to buy a house right now, so they’re renting.”

By Kerri Panchuk
Housing Wire

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