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On August 1, 2018 Baltimore City implemented a new law requiring all rental properties to acquire Rental License. A deadline of January 1st 2021 was given for all rental units including multi-family to have obtained a license. The new city changes aim to improve the living conditions of tenants, protect their rights, and ensure that landlords are held accountable for maintaining their properties. In this post, we will discuss some of the key changes and how they may affect your rental property.
Requirements for Rental Property License
- Rental Property Registration
- Lead Paint Inspections
- Property Rental Inspections
Rental Property Registration
Effective immediately, all rental properties in Baltimore City must be registered with the Department of Housing and Community Development. This includes single-family homes, apartments, and multi-unit buildings. Owners who fail to register their properties may face penalties and fines.
Property Rental Inspection and its process
It’s important for rental property owners or landlords in Baltimore City to comply with the rental property inspection process to ensure that their rental properties meet the minimum housing code standards and provide a safe and habitable living environment for tenants.
The process for Property Rental Inspection in Baltimore City is as follows:
- Inspection Preparation: Prior to the inspection, it is a good idea to do a walk-thru and do your own inspection. Is there any peeling paint in and around rental the unit? Do all windows open and lock properly? Is there any evidence of rodent infestation? Etc. Click Here to get a Printable Inspection Checklist. This Pre-inspection can be done by the owner or through your Property Management Company.
- Scheduling the inspection: Once the request is received, the department will schedule an inspection of the rental property. The inspection date and time will be communicated to the rental property owner or landlord. Please Note – If your management company is the one applying for the inspection, they will do all the legwork for you.
- Inspection day: On the day of the inspection, the rental property owner or property management company agent must be present to allow access to the rental property. The inspector will assess the rental property for compliance with Baltimore City’s housing code standards. This includes checking for issues such as lead paint, broken windows, and faulty electrical systems etc.
- Inspection report: Following the inspection, the inspector will provide a report that identifies any housing code violations and areas that require repairs or improvements to bring the rental property up to the minimum housing code standards. The report will also indicate whether the rental property meets the requirements for a rental license.
- Repair or remediation: The rental property owner is responsible for making any necessary repairs or remediation to bring the rental property up to the minimum housing code standards. The owner can enlist the assistance of the property management company to complete the repairs on their behalf.
- Re-inspection: After the repairs or remediation are completed, another inspection is scheduled to confirm that the rental property meets the minimum housing code standards.
- Rental license: If the rental property passes the inspection and meets the minimum housing code standards, the rental property owner or landlord can obtain a rental license for the property.
Lead Paint Inspections
All rental properties built before 1978 are required to have a lead paint inspection performed by a state-certified lead paint inspector. This is a new requirement that is designed to protect tenants, particularly young children, from the harmful effects of lead poisoning. Rental property owners must provide a copy of the inspection report to tenants, and the report must be available for review by the Baltimore City Housing Authority upon request. Click Here to learn more about the Lead Paint Inspection process.
All rental properties in Baltimore City are required to have a rental license. This license must be renewed every two years, and the owner must provide a copy of the rental license to all tenants. Failure to obtain a rental license may result in fines and penalties.
In Baltimore City, failing to obtain a rental license for your rental property can result in fines and penalties. The amount of the fine will vary depending on the specific circumstances, but it can be up to $1,000 per day for each day that the rental property is operating without a valid rental license. Additionally, the city may issue an order to vacate the property and tenants may be required to move out if the rental property does not have a valid rental license.
It’s important for rental property owners to obtain a rental license and keep it up to date to avoid any potential fines or penalties. By obtaining a rental license, rental property owners can ensure that they are complying with Baltimore City’s laws and regulations and providing a safe and habitable environment for their tenants.
The success of your rental property depends to a large part on being in compliance with Baltimore City rental laws. The laws for rental property owners, which include rental property registration, lead paint inspections, and rental licenses, must be followed. Rental property owners who fail to comply with these regulations may face penalties and fines. To help rental property owners comply with these regulations and provide safe and habitable housing for their tenants, Baltimore Village Property Management offers a full suite of services including but not limited to lead inspection, rental property registration, property repairs, and rental license. We do provide services to managed and unmanaged properties alike. Please contact us Today.