Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Update on Oregon Legislative Changes On Tenant Fees

Legislative update by J. Norton Cabell, from the Rental Housing Association of Greater Portland. Download their complete newsletter here. HFO Investment Real Estate encourages membership in the RHAGP. Visit their membership section here.

Effective January 1, 2010, SB 771 passed by the legislature and signed by the governor, provide the following with regard to tenant fees:

Prohibited fees.
All one-time fees such as cleaning fees, pet fees, carpet cleaning fees, move-in fees and fees for service or companion animals are prohibited.

Allowed fees.
Certain noncompliance fees are allowed.
Non-compliance fees that are allowed and are not to exceed $50 are:
  1. Late payment of utilities to the landlord
  2. Failure to clean up pet waste
  3. Failure to clean up garbage from outside the dwelling unit
  4. Parking violations
  5. Improper use of vehicles, such as speeding, on the premises
Other allowed fees that may be more than $50 are:
  1. Late charges for a bounced check, plus any amount the landlord was charged by the bank
  2. Any pet violations in a manufactured home
  3. Breaking a lease (limited to 1.5x rent) - in the alternative, the landlord may charge for damages
  4. Charges for services requested by the tenant and not required by law such as
  • Key replacements
  • Lock-out fees
Written Disclosures Required for Deposits and Fees
Landlords must give written disclosure of rent, deposits and fees when preparing a rental agreement or when taking a deposit for future rental.

Security deposits
  • Landlords may not charge a security or pet deposit for companion or service animal
  • Landlords can charge for their own labor when making repairs or cleaning
  • Rent for the time a rental unit is unavailable for renting because of cleaning or repairs necessitated by the tenant can be charged to a security deposit
  • If agreed to in the rental agreement, if the carpet was cleaned before the tenant moved in, the landlord can charge from teh deposit carpet cleaning expenses, even if the tenant had the carpet cleaned, and regardless of the condition of the carpet
  • If a tenant terminates a fixed-term tenancy before expiration, a landlord may charge actual damages, including rent and cost of re-renting.


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