The long-debated issue of rent control is back on the table once again. Back in 1994 rent control was banned statewide which protected renter from eviction and monthly rent hikes.

”Regulation by law of the rent a landlord can charge for domestic accommodation and of his right to evict tenants.” – Collins English Dictionary

Rent control

As the Boston Globe puts it, “A battle is brewing…” A group of lawmakers are close to filing a bill to, “protect renters from steep rent hikes and eviction.”

With rents increasing across the country increasing, some states have been starting to talk more about proposing this idea and now Massachusetts is following suit.  As with all decisions, there are pros and cons.

Pros

  • Tenants rent is capped at a certain amount.
  • Cities have a certain amount of affordable housing options for lower class renters
  • Tenants have some stability and security in a rent-controlled apartment
  • Tenants save money
  • Less tenant turnover for landlords

Cons

  • Eliminates the desire for landlords to improve their properties.
  • Landlords receive lower than market value for their rental units.
  • Younger families are the ones not able to take full advantage of rent control because their more likely to have to upgrade their living situation as their family dynamics grow.
  • Rent control creates a price ceiling.
  • Limits landlord’s ability to evict
  • One of the biggest cons is that It will drive multi-family values down. Investors will not be interested in purchasing these property types and if they already own, they will sell.

Anthony weighs in:

“Though I recognize that high rents can be discouraging for tenants I do not support rent control at all. It is counterintuitive to an open market and it is bad in the long run. It will immediately bring property values down and landlords will not up keep on their properties. In the end it will do more damage than good” – Anthony Lamacchia Owner of Lamacchia Property Management.

As reported by Curbed Boston, “the soon-to-be bill would permit municipalities to devise their own tenant protections without the okay of the state.” So, what will be the outcome of this long-heated debate?