You may not be aware of the latest legislation to hit Eugene, Oregon. If you, or someone you know, owns a rental property in Eugene, keep reading.
The City of Eugene is actively reviewing protections for renters. One of the City’s governing bodies, The Intergovernmental Housing Policy Board (HPB), whose mission is to “increase the availability of decent, affordable housing for low and very low income families and individuals in Lane County”, provided recommendations for the City to consider. From those recommendations, the City Council of Eugene recently passed a new ordinance amending the City Rental Housing Code (Code) - Ordinance No. 20670 that impacts all rental housing. It was passed on July 11, 2022 and will go into effect on August 13, 2022. This ordinance is the result of potentially the first in what could be three phases as the City continues to review and update renter protections. Phases II and III are slated for November 2022 and February 2023 respectively. If they do occur we will update the blog with additional information.
If you’re not familiar with the City Rental Housing Code, the Code was created in 2005 to ensure safe properties by establishing minimum habitability standards and resources for property owners and tenants. Per the City of Eugene’s website the purpose of the Code is “to provide minimum habitability criteria to safeguard health, property and public wellbeing of the owners, occupants and users of rental housing and is intended to supplement rather than conflict with the habitability standards of the State of Oregon Residential Landlord and Tenant Act.”
All Eugene rental housing providers, property managers, and landlords are required to follow the new ordinance and all complaints shall be processed by the city manager. For the purpose of this blog, all future reference to the aforementioned will be “housing provider”.
Documentation of Condition of Rental Housing
Housing providers of properties in Eugene must provide tenants with the following information prior to the date the renter begins occupying the rental property:
Documentation of the condition of the rental property and it’s appliances; and
Confirmation from the renter that the renter received and reviewed the documentation.
The documentation of the rental property and appliance is described as:
Photo documentation showing the condition of the rental housing, including the condition of any appliances provided for use by tenants; and
A written statement describing the condition of the rental housing, including the condition of any appliance provided for use by tenants, and noting any damage.
Upon a tenancy ending the housing provider is required to provide documentation, both photo documentation and a written statement of the rental property and appliances, along with a written accounting stating the basis of any claims for any portion of the security deposit. This documentation is to be provided along with the deposit accounting within the required timeframe of the current State of Oregon’s Landlord Tenant Law after the tenancy terminates.
Maximum Cap on Applicant Screening Charges
The fee for screening applicants for rental properties affected by the Eugene ordinances may not be more than the amount of the housing provider’s average screening costs or $10, whichever amount is less.
Rental Housing Registration and Fees
The Eugene City Manager will be setting a fee for each rental unit covered by a rental agreement. The revenue generated by the fee shall be used for the purpose of offsetting the costs to the City of Eugene associated with the enforcement of the cost and costs associated with providing services to tenants, owners, and managers of rental housing. The services will include but not be limited to: a Rental Housing Navigator position, rental housing data collection, and tenant support services.
Tenant Educational Information
At the time of rental agreement execution, housing providers are to provide tenants of a rental agreement educational information in a form approved by the Eugene City Manager. The form is to include the rights and obligations of housing providers and tenants related to termination of a tenancy and information about the requirement of this City Rental Housing Code of Eugene.
A housing provider shall provide renters of a Eugene rental property with a rental reference within five business days of a written request. Eugene’s City Manager will create an approved form. Housing providers need only provide two rental references in a calendar year.
Quality Property Management Needed Now More Than Ever!
Real estate is a strong, long-term investment and just like any investment you want a sense of protection in them. Property management companies give you that protection and are worth their weight in gold by saving you time, reducing your stress, and maximizing your investment. With all of the legal changes in the last few years, you want to have a great property management company on your side. With all the new changes it has made self management a nightmare. One can no longer “part time” manage. The risk of a mistake leads to significant litigious costs. If you find yourself lacking in the time to keep yourself educated on the latest city or state law changes, complete property walkthroughs of your occupied units with documentation, or keep your rental agreement contracts and notices up to date by an attorney, then a property manager is your answer.
Trio Property Management Inc. has been in business since 2004. We are actively engaged in our local market and work hard to represent our clients’ and customers’ best interests. Should you wish to learn about how we can help, click here for more information. We have seen numerous self managers make costly mistakes that would have paid for our services for a rather long time. We have a transparent management style and we want to make owning investment properties a practical and long term venture. Let our seasoned staff make owning and renting your property a great experience for you!
This document is not legal advice. Consult the ordinance directly for details and current language, and an attorney for legal advice and interpretation.