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Adkins vs. landlords

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    Posted: May 12 2012 at 8:43pm
From the MJ:

Battle between city, Middletown landlords heating up

By Rick McCrabb, Commentary 6:10 PM Saturday, May 12, 2012

MIDDLETOWN — Talk about a power struggle.

On one side of the table sits Doug Adkins, community revitalization director for the City of Middletown, who wants landlords to register their rental properties — may be $25 per mailbox — so the city can have more control on the properties and more accountability of the owners.

Then there are landlords — they prefer the title “professional housing providers” — who say they already register their properties with the Butler County Auditor’s Office, and there’s already too much government, too many fees.

They want the existing regulations in place enforced before more rules are written.

Adkins pitched his proposal on May 1 to Middletown City Council, and while most of the council sounded receptive to the idea, I don’t need to tell you how it was received by those who own rental property in the city.

More than 30 landlords met recently at a local restaurant to voice their displeasure with the city. They plan on writing e-mails to all seven members of council, signing a petition, and encouraging others impacted by the possible registration — bank officials, construction workers, hardware store owners — to join in their effort.

It’s about to get real interesting.

Missy McCall was one of those who attended the meeting. She has fought this battle before. In the early 2000s, she said, Hamilton City Council proposed similar legislation, and McCall led a group that opposed the registration fees. Landlords, wearing bright red shirts, packed the council chambers. They voiced their opinions. They were heard. Eventually the legislation was dropped.

Now the Butler County Battle moves to Middletown.

Adkins told council that if the legislation passes, the city would need to buy more vehicles and software and possibly hire more staff.

To that, McCall said: “We don’t need more government,” a sentiment echoed by many at the meeting.

McCall said her company rehabs about 50 homes a year — that’s nearly one per week — in Butler County. She has lived in Middletown for two years, but said if the legislation passes, she’ll take her business to neighboring communities.

McCall said if landlords register their homes with the city, it will give them additional ammunition to hold the landlords accountable for the actions of their tenants. That makes landlords “the big mommy and daddy,” McCall said.

She questioned the timing of this proposal. She called this the “worst real estate recession since the Great Depression,” and said if passed, it will force more people into foreclosure.

“People are struggling,” she said. “More will fail and there will be more blight. Period.”

In a “perfect world,” McCall said, the city would create a committee with equal representation from city administrators and landlords and they’d discuss the property pitfalls in the city. She said the city should ask the landlords for solutions.

“We’re the experts,” she said.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bocephus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 12 2012 at 10:39pm
Guess the slum lords want to stay incognito.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rhodes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 13 2012 at 3:52am
This isn't about more control over rental properties, it's just a ploy to bring in more cash to the city. If the city was serious about housing control the HUD problem would have already been resolved.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Middletown29 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 13 2012 at 10:36am
If you are not a slum lord Adkins proposal should be a welcome one.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TonyB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 13 2012 at 6:17pm
M29,

Really? Giving the city more money and more control over private enterprise sounds like a good idea to you? Because it has worked so well for the last 30 years? I have to agree with the landlords on this one; enforce the current regulations before deciding whether additional laws are required. Keep our local government out of the real estate business. This is not a problem to be solved by more regulation but by enforcement of existing statutes. Do we really need another layer of government red tape?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pacman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 13 2012 at 8:14pm
Funny what you can get accomplished by standing together against the City Council and it's employees.  Everyone on this site say no, no it can't be done when it comes to trying to deal with city issues. 

As we have seen in the last 12-18 months the unions flood city hall, and we see city council wetting it's pants, except for laubaugh.  Next we have the landlords who buy house at such a ridiculous rate they can affor to fix them up and dump them in 2 or 3 yrs when the city attempts to crack down on them.  Yet on every turn the posters on this site slink back into a corner when issues come up.

PacmanCool
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote viper771 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 14 2012 at 12:19am
I think I am with M29 on this one. I would do whatever it takes to hold landlords accountable for the sh***y renters they have. Landlords don't care as long as they get their rent money.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bocephus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 14 2012 at 1:03pm
Nothing like seeing a house on your street that some slumlord paid pennies of its worth for witha huge banner that says "SECTION 8 RENTAL" on it. I think these people should be held more responsible for their tenants,all they care about is if someone can pay them the rent so they can buy up more and more foreclosed houses to rent.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Middletown29 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 14 2012 at 1:36pm
TonyB

Free enterprise does not mean unfettered capitalism.

For a recent example look at the Chase Bank $2 billion dollar gamble of depositors funds.

Rational regulation of business is a necessity because of human greed and corruption.

"If men were angels, no government would be necessary." Federalist #51
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote VietVet Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 14 2012 at 1:36pm
Doesn't this all go back to the city? Shouldn't we be pointing the accusing finger at city hall and council? After all, they are the catalyst for the ghetto housing boom in this town, aren't they? The moment someone got it in their head that they could bring revenue to town via HUD handout money, while not caring whether they sold the town into HUD low income welfare slavery, was the moment this problem started festering into the blight it is now. If the city decision-makers wouldn't have invited the whole Section 8 universe to town and with it, the slumlords who feast off the money passed their way, we wouldn't have had this problem, would we. When the city leaders started this program and invited the type of people who participate in capturing rehab ghetto land to turn a quick profit, they weren't dealing with the Donnie Trumps of the world, were they? It is not a program that will attract the cream of the crop now is it, so, in their infinite wisdom, they invited everyone who wanted a handout at the expense of the working folks like you and me. JMO
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote spiderjohn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 14 2012 at 2:17pm
Very true, Vet
The city brought all of this upon us for decades, eventually destroying certain areas of the city, along with a once sustainable retail business environment. Commissions and now Councils did nothing other than profit and grow the situation.

Now that Mr.adkins is finally tackling the problem, the profiting from poverty may be seriously monitored.
Are these intentions good from either or both sides?
Or is it all about $$ and protecting self-interests?
We shall see--I lean towards Mr.A until proven otherwise.

Today's MJ article hits very close to home lol
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bill Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 14 2012 at 2:48pm
For those who claim the city just wants more money -- I doubt the $25 per registration would amount to much of anything.  Forget the money grab argument and talk about the merits of what is trying to be accomplished here.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rngrmed Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 14 2012 at 3:04pm
Aren't the houses already "registered" with the County? why register again with the city? What do you get for your $25? I realize this isn't a lot of money, but don't these landlords already pay or supposed to pay taxes?

As someone mentioned above why not enforce the laws that are already in place?

Will this effect businesses as well? For example, the strip malls where Big Lots is located? Or Skyline, Papa Johns etc? Or even where Kmart is located since it has been talked about the poor condition of that building?

I do know Oxford has a similar registration charge, but they have a slightly different circumstance with all the college rentals, but the same idea.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote LMAO Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 14 2012 at 5:00pm
My house's I rent out our already registered through the county so if the BUM's of Middletown want to see who owns the house they can do as others do.Go to the county.
Im far from being a SLUMLORD.I take care of my properties and check on them at least twice a month.I pay for the grass being mowed and keep my properties up to par.If i have a renter that is being a nussance to the neighbors I talk to them and if it happens again I start getting my ducks in a row to get them out of there.I refuse to give the Crooks down in the city building a penny to get themself out of the hole they dug themself.Big%20smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bocephus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 14 2012 at 7:46pm
Ok so you rent one house out that doesn't mean you are a slumlord,when I use the word slumlord Im talking about people that buy houses so they can collect the rent money not caring what condition or what type of people or how many live in the house or what they do to the rest of us.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote LMAO Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 14 2012 at 9:19pm
I own more then one.Probaly,one of th few that doesnt have section 8 renters.I refuse to go through that route.
Its hard to believe I guess that there are a few of us that are good landlords.Big%20smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bocephus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 14 2012 at 10:40pm
Originally posted by LMAO LMAO wrote:

I own more then one.Probaly,one of th few that doesnt have section 8 renters.I refuse to go through that route.
Its hard to believe I guess that there are a few of us that are good landlords.Big%20smile
 
You may be one of the few,Im just not too happy with a few of them close to my house I would sell out and move but Im so upside down its not feasible. Maybe I should have just walked away like a lot of other people have done.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Richard Saunders Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 15 2012 at 4:10am
Something is very wrong here.  I was told after a recent meeting of landlords that the $25 fee will be due every time a unit becomes vacant, as well as yearly.
 
Federal laws force landlords to rent to nearly anyone who initially has the money whether they want them for a tenant or not, so for some units this may cost the landlord $50 or $100 per year, per unit. If they have several units, this could easily run up to thousands of dollars per year.
 
What does the landlord get in return?  Nothing but more hassles...unless they are friends of city hall, then this will be no big deal and will cost them next to nothing.
 
(Before you doubt me, think about Adkins and his new gang of motorized rental property storm troopers.  Someone will have to pay for these gestapos, and their new vehicles.  It certainly won't be CDBG dollars, those are now pledged to HEP to cover the loan for Cincinnati State.  It will have to come from them "finding" some sort of "violations" so that they can collect fines.)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TonyB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 15 2012 at 7:19am
M29,

No one said anything about unfettered capitalism. I'm talking about yet another layer of government red tape. How many places do these rental units need to be "registered"? I take it the county level isn't good enough for you? Why not add registration fees based on which street in town, whether there are "too many" rental houses in an area, or who has the Section 8 properties? As Mr. Saunders correctly points out, what are you getting for your "registration fee"?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rhodes Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 15 2012 at 2:34pm
Apparently some on here do not know how to estimate $25 per unit. It does add up to a lot of money.

These properties are already zoned, there is no need to register them again. The city caused the influx of poverty in the city. It's not the responsibility of a landlord to control the behavior of a tenant.

It doesn't matter how cheap they buy a property. If properties are selling cheap in your neighborhood, then buy some yourself until the market turns around.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bocephus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 16 2012 at 2:29pm
Originally posted by Rhodes Rhodes wrote:

Apparently some on here do not know how to estimate $25 per unit. It does add up to a lot of money.

These properties are already zoned, there is no need to register them again. The city caused the influx of poverty in the city. It's not the responsibility of a landlord to control the behavior of a tenant.

It doesn't matter how cheap they buy a property. If properties are selling cheap in your neighborhood, then buy some yourself until the market turns around.
 
If I could sell the house I own I would just move out like most other people seem to have done.You all are right,the city caused a huge influx of poverty but greedy (not all) landlords are just happy with buying houses for nothing and renting them out to the 1st drug addict or drunkard with a section 8 just to grow their bank accounts.
 
So if I could afford to buy the properties that are cheap in my neighborhood I probably would instead move to another town.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vivian Moon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 16 2012 at 4:25pm
Gentlemen

This has NOTHING to do with any HUD program or Section 8…and by the way Mr Adkins has NOT reduced the Section 8 vouchers program.

This is about charging to inspect each and every piece of rental property in Middletown no matter how large or small. This is about the City and Mr Adkins wanting control and power over privatey owned property. The City already has laws on the books to deal with any rental property problems.

Take a look around the City at all the property that the City now owns and tell me why they won’t clean up their own property before making demands on the citizens. Tell me again how well they used the millions of dollars in NSP and CDBG funds. I can tell you where it wasn’t used….It wasn’t used in the high poverty high crime areas.

This is all about money and power…..This is about feeding the BEAST called City Hall.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Middletown29 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 16 2012 at 8:55pm
TonyB
The issue is inspection of rental property. The way you implement an inspection program is to require they be registered. The registration fee is used to cover part of the inspection cost.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TonyB Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 17 2012 at 10:09am
M29,
Is the issue inspections or requirements? Where's the balance between safe housing and government control? How many fees, surcharges, hidden taxes is it going to take to fund government oversight of the ownership of property? Other posts here also have questions about who landlords rent property to; will that be another fee? Think that landlord isn't going to just pass that cost right to the renter of the property? How many layers of government are required to enforce current laws? What is the rest of that registration fee to be used for besides "inspection costs"?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Vivian Moon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 17 2012 at 11:09am
When did the real estate investment people of Middletown get on the same level as pimps and drug dealers?
Why does the City of
Middletown want to put these people out of business?
The City has made the downtown a ghost town because of their need to control and unreasonable demands and now they want a stranglehold on the rest of
Middletown.
How many more empty buildings and houses do we need in this town?
The City can’t talk care of the property they already own.
Yep this is all about fees and fines and feeding the BEAST
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