– Stakeholder group is providing input on implementing the program
The City of Seattle desires effective means to address problem rental housing units and improve rental housing conditions for Seattle residents. While the City recognizes that the great majority of housing units in the city meet basic standards of habitability, we know that there are some units that clearly do not. The City currently has a complaint-based system; potential violations are reported to the department, we then inspect, and if violations are found, action is taken to gain compliance. This program will continue. However, not all and perhaps some of the most egregious are never reported due to lack of concern about the condition, lack of knowledge of basic code standards, fear of retaliation, or lack of familiarity with the system. In June 2010, the Seattle City Council adopted Ordinance 123311. The ordinance establishes a testing and registration program for rental housing inspectors to begin in October 2011 and a licensing program for rental housing businesses to begin in April 2012.
Along with the ordinance, the Seattle City Council adopted Resolution 31221. That resolution calls for DPD to gather input from a stakeholder group and report back to Council with recommendations for implementing residential rental property registration and inspections. DPD has convened this stakeholder group and it is offering input on a number of policy questions concerning the ordinance’s requirements. DPD’s initial report is due to Council in February 2011. The stakeholder group will meet through April or May 2011.
To learn more about the program and to subscribe to receive notices of upcoming public events and updates, visit the program’s website at: www.seattle.gov/dpd/Compliance/RentalHousing/Overview/default.asp.