News Jun 1, 2022 at 3:22 pm

Is the rent too high? The City wants to know, but landlords don't want to say.

Wup! Somebody's in trouble with his base. Shitty Screenshot



The city council has driven out how many small landlords over the last 10 years? 10,000? How many of those were switched to either being torn down and or removed from being a rental? Most. The policies are making it even harder to find a place. Hannah continues to double down without seeing the big picture.


So can I claim that producing my income, credit score, and insurance information every time I have to move due to a $200+ rent increase is too much to bother with? It sounds like about the same amount of work and these guys are threatening to give up their passive income and add to the available housing stock or make way for denser housing, which suuuuure sounds scary


Love me some ideological heterodoxy on the City Council! Also it was fun watching the author begrudgingly accept Pedersens support on a housing affordability issue. I legit appreciate Pedersens willingness to catalyze some real debate and vote outside his block (if there really is such a thing in a non-partisan office), and I’ll vote for him again.


There is no penalty for noncompliance with these new reporting requirements, so I suspect any landlord who doesn't like this will simply elect not to participate. See


My boomer parents stupidly rent their old house in Fremont to long term tenants they like at about $1500/mo below market. Maybe this reporting requirement and the resulting report from the city will wake them up and get them in line with the market.


How the fuck does this help renters? It’s not like rents are secret. Every ad for an apartment lists the rent. What people are paying for a place they may have moved into years ago is irrelevant to what rents are now.


More silly grandstanding by everyones favorite council. What next? All store owners report the price they are charging for honey crisp apples? Windex?


Is Hannah really that naïve? That bill doesn’t help renters, the data is already available, and just adds a couple minutes of extra forms for landlords to fill out. Why spend millions of taxpayer dollars on hiring a private company to record rental prices when that money could be spent on more important things, like mental health care for the homeless?


This headline post was as short and bitter as the legislation was meaningless. Good work all around! Thanks for the laughs. (If this is the best the full City Council, in session, can do for this topic, then we all know why Seattle will always be at war with the housing crisis.)

Also, anyone who uses the term, "passive income," to describe managing a rental simply does not know what they are talking about, and thus can be safely ignored.


@6 "How the fuck does this help renters?" The ordinance authorizes yet another study, following on prior studies. It's unclear what the Seattle City Council will actually do with another study. But presumably after we throw a bunch of money at a "research university" to analyze the data for several years and generate a study, the Seattle City Council would reference this new study in a pointless nonbinding resolution calling on the state legislature to adopt rent control. In other words, we will piss away more money on homelessness response, without any measurable benefit.

Here's the meat of the ordinance:

" the Council intends that the submission of information regarding the number and size of residential rental units and rental amounts to a research university contracted to provide a report to the City will help to fill the identified data gaps and better allow the City to make policy to decrease gentrification and resulting physical, economic, and cultural displacement risks and inform updates to the City’s Comprehensive Plan update . . ."

And here's the real story:

"the Council intends for the Office of Planning and Community Development or other executive department to enter into a contract with a research university to provide the City with reports analyzing this data and continue to hold such a contract for as long as the City requires the designated information be provided to the designated research university;"

The "as long as the City requires" means we are going to enter into some sort of open-ended agreement that could last years. The City previously retained UC Berkeley for reasons that are unclear. I can only guess why the City elected not to support local universities in the past, but assume that same thinking will result in this new contract being awarded to a university outside of Seattle.


2 I assure you, it is entirely possible to completely ignore and not do ANY maintenance on an apartment building and still collect obscene profits in Seattle. All it takes are some verbal threats to disabled tenants with nowhere else to go.


This article makes me so sad. In your effort to pander to the prejudices of your readers you have completely missed what is going on. Pedersen's bill is a Trojan Horse. You have to realize that Pedersen is always doing the bidding of his primary supporters: single family homeowners who wish to slow down and stop development of new housing. (Pedersen and the homeowners aren't bothered by the high rents and homelessness that lack of housing produces.) The reason for high rents is no secret: it is lack of housing. Pedersen's bill does nothing for that. In fact his object is to use this data to push to prevent development of older small apartments, what he calls “naturally occurring affordable housing.” Pedersen and other opponents of more housing will argue that an older small apartment housing, say, 10 people should not be replaced by a multi-rise that would house 50 or 100 people. Yes, the rent will be higher in this new building than it is for the older building but by housing an additional 40-90 people who would otherwise be out driving up the price of housing elsewhere in Seattle rent overall in the city will be lower than would otherwise.


We sold our rental house in Ballard last year due to the policies of the Seattle City Council It’s just too complex and risky to be a small housing provider in Seattle

Very nice brick house with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. Big flat backyard with trees. Rent was $2000/month The long term tenant understood, but has to moving to Marysville to find a similar rental house for $2,100. The rent should have been $3,500/month But we really liked the tenants and they were there for almost 6 years

We sold the house for $1.2M and invested outside of Seattle.

What Hannah neglects to cover is we are not alone. Per the City of Seattle’s Rental registration database over 3000 mom and pop landlord sold their rentals in Seattle just last year alone. Resulting in the loss of over 11,000 affordable rental units

If The Seattle City Council continues to introduce complex and risky legislation the city will continue to lose more mom and pop rentals and renters will have to face the big corporate players like Graystar. Rents will definitely go way up

Hannah you might consider more balanced and accurate coverage


Hey Hannah, go fuck yourself. I've rented my former residence to a nice couple for six years without raising their rent once even as my property manager keeps trying to get me to do it. Once again, you who have nothing invested have nothing to lose by attacking those who struggled and scrimped and invested sweat equity into a house that makes someone a nice, affordable home. So go gouge yourself.


@10- that’s pretty much exactly what I was thinking. In other words, it does jack to help anyone.

@13- this is the latest example of the city council passing a law that will only hurt tenants. Not the worst by far, but another brick in the wall.

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