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Erin Eberlin

Town Considers Assigning Points for Landlord Violations

By November 25, 2012

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The Common Council in Middletown, NY is considering a law which would assign points to landlords for violations. Points would be assigned for safety and building code violations, as well as for police calls to the property. If a landlord accumulates a certain number of points, they would lose their rental license. The details of the law still need to be worked out, but the Council is excited about it.

This idea has promise if it is executed fairly, which is a big if. How do you assign a landlord a point if the police are called to their building? Will the landlord also get a point if the tenant gets a speeding ticket or is reprimanded at work? A landlord can screen his or her tenants, but is not responsible for a tenant's personal life unless the actions are threatening the safety of other tenants of the community.

In addition, if a point system is applied to landlords, it should also be applied to tenants. Tenants should be assigned points for evictions, police calls and other disturbances and conflicts. After being assigned a certain number of points, they too should be banned from renting in the town.

Suggested Reading:
Landlord's Responsibilities to Tenants
Landlord's Responsibilities to Property
Landlord's Responsibilities to Community
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