January 2021 - Housing Shortage, Laws & Orders! Skip to Main Content

January 2021 – Housing Shortage, Laws & Orders!

Hey Friends! So let’s talk about the Utah housing shortage, and some local/national laws and orders coming down the pipe.

The first one to start off with the housing shortage that we’re facing here in Utah.  There are 55,000 households in Utah that are doubling up. And what that means is essentially 55,000 households that there’s not enough homes for. That’s a situation that we have. And so these people are doubling up or essentially they’re living in other people’s homes or family. And we’ve got dual families and sometimes even three families living in one home. That’s a situation that we’re at right now. And so the discussion that we have is, okay, how do we allow for more development developing in the vertical space?, which is what we really have to do, especially in the Salt Lake Valley, where we’re restricted by the mountains on both sides, as well as the Lake and the point of the mountain.

So we’ve got to be able to go vertical in some areas. And of course there’s cities that kind of pushed back on that. So that’s one of the discussion points that we have, one of the the bills that’s potentially going to be going forward and looking to get pushed through is a requirement to allow cities or to require cities, to allow ADU’s. And if you know what that is, it’s an accessory dwelling unit, which is basically like having your primary residence or your primary home, and then being able to build an apartment on the side of it or even behind it. So you’re able to have a little bit of a rental or income property on your primary residence, or you could have a rental property that has that there’s a house and you build an accessory dwelling unit as a part of it.

So it’s kind of like creating a duplex type situation, but it’s in an effort to provide more housing for people. So that’s one of the things. The other one is in university cities, in areas of universities requiring cities to increase their occupancy limit from three unrelated adults to four. And so that’s some areas up by the university of Utah, UVU, BYU, and some other areas. There are some cities that already allow that, but making that a requirement for those university areas. So that’s a couple of things that we’ll be following up on and keeping you informed on. Now, as you know, as Joe Biden is now our president and he’s been putting off as he has 30 executive orders. So far there may be more coming, but right now, 30 executive orders that he’s looking to have pushed through. One of those relating to housing is an extension of the eviction moratorium through at least March 31st.

This is something we were really expecting. I’m not surprised by it, especially where we’re not out of the woods by any means, by any stretch relating to COVID and businesses being shut down and everything like that. But so that eviction moratorium being extended through March and I, I would expect it to actually continue beyond that. So what it’s required us to do with Keyrenter Property Management, you know, our various offices, as well as landlords in each of you that have rental properties is we’ve had to be creative with how we approach evictions or approach, I should say, non-payment type situation. So here’s just a few tips that you can implement with your rentals. These are some of the things that we do with our clients. One of them is of course, you’re working with the tenants as best you can.

There are many situations where the residents might need to be put on a payment plan or something to be able to work through their situation, but keep in mind that the eviction moratorium is not for all evictions. It’s not for every situation is just for nonpayment of rent and the CDC order and everything there is it’s it’s for non-payment of rent relating to COVID reasons. Okay. So if you have a tenant that is violating the lease, or, you know, there’s a situation where you might need to terminate the lease because of smoking or pads or whatever it is, as long as you’re building a record of those issues, you can still evict on those. Now, some courts are more difficult or more difficult to work with now because they’re either backed up with cases or they might be more sensitive to the tenant situation, but you still can do it successfully.

The other thing you can do instead of evicting for nonpayment, and you can actually sue the tenants for nonpayment, and you can get a judgment in place now, while they’re living in the house, rather than waiting till after they vacate, it can increase your chances of being able to collect on it. Of course, if you’re trying to sue someone that doesn’t have any money, you’re not going to get any money right now, but if you can get that judgment in place, that can be helpful for you because there’s no law against not being able to sue somebody, but there is against discipline placing that person. Okay. That’s one strategy you can use. One thing I also recommend is don’t try and do it on your own. You know, the eviction process, especially there are people and stories and examples of people that have tried to test the system, so to speak, and they pushed through an eviction and guys, they can be subject to fines up to $200,000 for trying to push an eviction during this period of moratorium.

And so don’t try to do it on your own. Work with us, or work with the eviction attorney. If you have a situation you really need to try to get out of feel free to reach out to us, but I hope this is helpful.

This is the world of property management and rental properties is an exciting one it’s ever changing. And it’s a great place to be. So hope you have a great rest of your day. Everyone take care. Thanks.

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