The Eugene City Council has done the unthinkable. After multiple attempts over several years, they passed Ordinance No. 20670 on July 11th, 2022, and it was signed by the Mayor on July 13th, 2022. These new regulations, updates to the existing housing code, are merely phase one in their plans to implement similar restrictions to those already imposed in Portland.

Effective August 13th, 2022, the ordinance enacts the following restrictions:

First and foremost, the ordinance institutes a max fee of $10 per applicant for tenant screening. The average fee for an application before was $45-75 and the change creates a large deficit for management companies and landlords. But, as always, the immediate stress this creates for the producer, in this case, the landlord, will within a short time transfer itself to the consumer, the tenant.

Landlords and management companies are now mandated to provide a Tenant’s Rights Notification to the resident at move-in. The city council will provide this form at a future, unspecified date. In addition, we will also be required to provide the tenant with a completed move-in report, including pictures of the home’s condition at move-in.

At move-out, we will once again be required to complete a report of the condition of the home and provide it to the tenant. The report will include pictures of any damages. The city council also has dictated the move-out accounting include a detailed breakdown of all charges.

At Empire, we always treat the tenant’s security deposit with careful respect, fully aware that it does not belong to us or the owner, but to the tenant. We are honor-bound to be good stewards and faithfully discharge the obligations imposed by the contract and landlord-tenant law. With that mindset, we already provided the tenants with a detailed breakdown of all move-out charges. Invoices are available upon request.

The ordinance also institutes restrictions on rental references and raises the door fee for Eugene properties.

In conclusion:

The entire city was surprised when the council passed ordinance No. 20670. In a county with an ongoing housing shortage, the last thing you want to do is discourage landlords and investors. These same measures in Portland caused high vacancy rates as landlords chose to leave their properties empty rather than deal with the headache of conforming to the new restrictions. Record numbers of single-family homes left the rental market. Rents skyrocketed.

Many landlords, weary of being perpetually portrayed as the enemy, are bailing out. Decreased inventory raises the value of each unit. While the homebuyers market is faltering and property prices are no longer rising due to the increased interest rate, the rental market is going strong. Rents are still rising.  The market will always adjust and shift the weight back to the consumer.

As always, Happy Landlording.