During the last week of February, Oregon became the first U.S. state to pass comprehensive statewide rent-control legislation which aims to be the latest solution to an affordable housing crisis already exacerbated by previous regulatory
bungles burdens such as urban growth boundaries and overly restrictive zoning. As reported by the Rental Housing Journal, among many provisions, the new law makes it illegal for landlords to raise rent more than 7% plus the consumer price index during a 12-month period. It also practically eliminates no-cause evictions and requires property owners to provide a month of free rent to subsidize “with cause” evicted tenants’ moves.
In a release after signing the legislation, Governor Kate Brown (D) said “this legislation will provide some immediate relief to Oregonians struggling to keep up with rising rents and a tight rental market.”
However, Oregon House Republicans had a far more realistic take on the new law:
“Passage of this bill also raises a more serious question: If a property owner can’t decide who lives in their apartments and houses, who really owns the property? Certainly, it is no longer the one who pays the property taxes.”
Indeed…This issue isn’t going away any time soon. Stay tuned.