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When Did Oregon Introduce Rent Control — and How Much is it Helping Tenants?

When Did Oregon Introduce Rent Control — and How Much is it Helping Tenants?

Oregon introduced rent control in 2019, becoming the first state in the US to adopt this policy statewide. The legislation was passed in response to a severe housing crisis that had been ongoing for several years. The goal was to provide relief to renters who were struggling with rising housing costs and eviction rates.

Under the new law, landlords are limited in their ability to increase rent annually to a maximum of 7% plus inflation. The law also includes just-cause eviction protections, meaning that landlords can only evict tenants for specific reasons, such as non-payment of rent, violation of the lease agreement, or causing significant damage to the property.

So, how much is Oregon's rent control policy helping tenants? The answer is complex, and it depends on who you ask.

Proponents of the policy argue that it has provided much-needed relief to renters who were previously facing unaffordable rent increases and arbitrary evictions. They also point to data that suggests that eviction rates have decreased since the policy was implemented. According to a report from the Oregon Center for Public Policy, the state's eviction rate dropped by nearly 20% in the first six months of 2020 compared to the same period in 2019.

Opponents of the policy, on the other hand, argue that rent control has unintended consequences that ultimately hurt tenants. They argue that rent control discourages investment in new housing units, leading to a shortage of affordable housing options in the long term. They also point out that rent control policies tend to benefit long-term renters at the expense of new renters, who often face higher rents due to the limited supply of available housing.

Despite the debate around the effectiveness of Oregon's rent control policy, it is clear that more needs to be done to address the state's housing crisis. While rent control may provide some relief to renters in the short term, it is not a silver bullet solution to the complex issue of affordable housing. Other solutions, such as increasing the supply of affordable housing, providing rental assistance to low-income households, and addressing the root causes of homelessness, must also be considered.

While Oregon's rent control policy has provided some relief to tenants, it is only one part of a larger effort to address the state's housing crisis. It is important for policymakers to consider a range of solutions to ensure that all Oregonians have access to safe, affordable housing.

Find out more about rental news, managing rental properties, and find helpful advice on maintaining your rental investments on the North Coast Rentals website. Give us a call today: 503-738-4821