The rental housing industry is faced with a broad political coalition that has been forming throughout the Puget Sound to pursue legislation that seeks to dramatically reform the landlord-tenant relationship. Many voters understand that the price of rent is high compared to wages in urban areas, and while the amount of actual evictions remains very low, many policymakers in the Puget Sound-area adamantly believe reforming the legal process for removing a tenant from a rental property will best address housing displacement for low-income tenants.
While the chief policy goal of the eviction reform bills is to significantly increase the notification period for nonpayment of rent, the bills also contain many other changes to the eviction process and the landlord-tenant relationship. SB 5600 (sponsored by Sen. Patty Kuderer, D - 48th district in Kirkland), and HB 1453 (sponsored by Rep. Nicole Macri, D - 43rd district in Seattle) both contain policies that would limit the amount of attorney's fees and late fees allowed in an unlawful detainer judgment, create a definition of rent that separates recurring fees and utilities in the rental agreement from other fees and costs, require that landlords apply payments to rent first before other costs and fees, limit a landlord’s ability to bring an eviction for charges other than rent, and create new processes in eviction law for tenant’s to reinstate a tenancy through judicial discretion payment plans for nonpayment of rent.
RHAWA and other industry advocates continue to argue that these increased regulations will create further cost burdens on landlords who have not received rent owed, and those costs will be reflected in increased rents for tenants. And with all the intense focus on the eviction process by the advocates for SB 5600 / HB 1453, there has been little discussion about the deeper issue of rent burden that causes tenants to fall behind in rent.
Managing one property, although a bit challenging at first, is not that difficult once you get the hang of it. Managing multiple properties, on the other hand, is a whole different story. You’d have more tenants, things to check, rents to pick up, properties to invest in, and potential headaches to handle. However, with a bit of effort, managing multiple properties can become just as easy as managing only one – and here’s how.
Practice Good Organization
When you have more than one property to manage, being disorganized is not an option. From the inspection checklists to the rent payment confirmations, you will probably have quite a lot of paperwork. Plus, you can’t allow yourself to misplace any important documents, since that could lead to more than just financial consequences. So, come up with your own filing system – you can organize your papers by property, tenant’s name, month, or something else that makes sense to you. Just make sure to stick with the system.
Sponsored blog content provided by Colliers International’s Seattle Multifamily Team
Believe it or not, this isn’t a pitch to convince you to sell your apartment building.
Yes, we’re apartment brokers, and at the end of the day our job is to sell buildings. But our guiding principal is to help clients make the best decisions so they achieve the highest returns on their multifamily investments.
Over the last six years, Seattle has experienced a run of good news and rent growth, but we’re starting to see signs that the market cycle is shifting. If you’re planning to hold your building for the next five years, don’t even give market cycles a second thought — fundamentals remain strong.
But, if you might sell in the next three years, it's time to start thinking about strategy. While the market delivered record sales prices from 2014 - 2018, maximizing value today requires smart planning.
After selling 28 buildings in the last 12 months, we’ve cultivated three key insights that apartment owners can benefit from:
Tenants consider their cat or dog a furry family member, and most of them will pass on a property which isn't pet-friendly. That property might have everything they're looking for, with amazing amenities at an affordable price, but if Fido isn't allowed, they'll move on without a second thought. Compromise isn't an option.
Landlords have their own rationale, of course. Sharp claws and over-excitement cause considerable damage to hardwood flooring and drywall, and it only takes a week before the nice green lawn in front of a building is no longer nice or green. Maintenance expenses can exceed the profit accrued from a lenient policy.
Despite these difficulties, landlords don't have to turn away pet owners, and tenants don't have to give up their cat or dog. With a few adjustments to the lease, renovations to flooring and other changes, it's possible to reach an agreement where no one has to make a tough decision or inconvenient concession.
In this article, we'll walk landlords through the many ways they can minimize pet damage to preserve their properties while providing flexibility for tenants.
Investing in the real estate industry is probably the best way to make the most of your money and get back much more than you’ve invested. However, the real estate industry all around the world isn’t the same, and you need to spend some time inspecting it first before making any decisions. Some people think investing in large cities might be a great idea, while others prefer investing their cash in smaller towns, and if you too are looking for viable investment ideas, these are two alternatives you have to look into. So, what are the differences between these choices, which one is better and which one makes more sense in the long run?
Larger cities offer more choices
Whatever amount of money you have, deciding to invest it in a large city means you’ll have more options to choose from and, therefore, more ideas to think about. Cities usually attract more people, the market is richer and more developed, while the competition is much fiercer, and that means you’ll have far more options to choose from. Investors generally consider cities to be more attractive due to a number of reasons – from economic growth to strategic planning – so this might be something you should look into as well.
Sean Martin | Executive Director
RHAWA is spreading the love with members today by offering our newest benefit to members – our Rental Management Access Portal (RMAP)! RMAP offers our membership the ability to transact with applicants entirely online, from application for tenancy and screening, to auto-filled forms and electronic signing, and online rent pay for the duration of tenancy. Best of all, RMAP is FREE to RHAWA members.
Heather Pierce | Deputy Director of Government Affairs
We are smack in the middle of the most contentious legislative session for landlords that the state has seen in nearly 40 years. Dozens of “renter protections” bills aimed at making it extremely time consuming and expensive for landlords to properly address problem tenancies are being debated and voted on, and RHAWA needs the help of its membership to educate legislators on the value of rental housing and how rental investors and landlords benefit the community.
If the thought of politics makes your stomach turn, or you’re not sure where to start, RHAWA is here to make the process as smooth and simple to understand as we can. It doesn’t take much more than 5 minutes of your time to engage with your elected official and share your story. People in office are there to represent you and your voice is critical to the legislative process.
Not sure if you've seen or heard by now, but it's been snowing - A LOT - in Western Washington the past few days! RHAWA has put together a quick Q&A to guide you through some of the most common scenarios that might come up involving the snow and your rentals. Remember to stay safe and encourage your tenants to stay clear of hazards.
This post contains general information and is not intended to apply to any specific situation. If you need legal advice or have questions about the application of the law in a particular matter, you should consult a lawyer.
Who is responsible for removing snow at my rental, me or the tenant (at both single and multi-family rentals)?
If you have a single family rental and used the RHA lease we have language in it that transfers snow removal responsibility to the tenant, located at #26ii in the current lease. If you used another lease you need to see if this is the case.
If you have a multi-family lease or property it is considered the landlords responsibility to keep the common areas free of obstructions or liabilities, this would include snow and ice.
If you have a towing contract for your property you may have a clause in it that provides for snow plowing and some landscape contracts include snow removal as well.
Heather Pierce | Deputy Director of Government Affairs
Washington State legislators are already hearing bills that would drastically alter the RLTA and impact how you do business!
On Wednesday night, Senator Patty Kuderer dropped SB5600, which intends to increase the PAY OR VACATE NOTICE TO 14 DAYS and seeks to restrict owners from ending a FIXED TERM LEASE AGREEMENTS AT THE EXPIRATION OF A LEASE.
Details on how SB5600 will impact rental owners if passed are available below.
Attend the Senate Housing Stability & Affordability Full Committee Hearing