Akron-Cleveland REALTORS® Help Control Rental Rates

By HOM Editor

Everyone wants to make sure rental properties are well maintained and do not harm property values in the surrounding community. But onerous burdens on landlords can also harm the rental market. Members of the Akron Cleveland Association of REALTORS® are working to ensure a balance.

In 2014, the Association’s government affairs director, Jamie McMillen, noticed a flurry of governmental action on rental policy in the Akron-Cleveland area.

“Communities were looking to make sure that properties were well maintained, and of course we have no problem with that,” McMillen said. However, the Association also noticed that some governmental efforts seemed misguided, with little analysis of those efforts’ costs, benefits and unintended consequences.

Although the Association had historically limited its efforts in the rental market, it took the lead in addressing the apparent trend that threatened to harm the community. As McMillen noted, when communities are trying to attract businesses, “the inevitable increase in rental costs would be counter to the goal of having affordable housing available for the workforce.”

A recent example of success for the Association’s campaign occurred when the city of Fairlawn, Ohio, proposed a layer of rental oversight, which would have inevitably led to increased rental rates and might have violated Fair Housing laws. The Association was able to take advantage of the Land Use Initiative program of the National Association of REALTORS® to fully analyze the proposed legislation. Armed with clear data, the Association was able to get the ordinance tabled once it presented the data to Fairlawn’s city council and mayor.

McMillen said the Association is achieving similar results in other area communities.

The Akron-Cleveland Association of REALTORS® has access to powerful tools that might be cost prohibitive to small communities but are critical to maintaining safe, attractive neighborhoods without unnecessarily burdening property owners.


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