Erie City Council unanimously passed an ordinance Wednesday night, giving new rights to both renters and landlords within the city.
It’s an ordinance that was months in the making, as Erie City Council members met with the Renter’s Association and landlords to meet a compromise.
Tenants and landlords in the City of Erie are seeing changes to how rental housing works.
The passage of an ordinance Wednesday night providing new safety measures for both parties as the demand for rental housing locally increases.
“The rate of home ownership has decreased in Erie. We continue to be a community that rents more and more. So as those situations grow, we’re seeing the bad actors being exposed in our community. This is really something that we need to do to protect our constituents,” said Chuck Nelson, president of Erie City Council.
There are three main points to take into consideration.
For starters, landlords give tenants a 60-day notice instead of the current 30-day standard if they want to increase rent.
Second, a process and a way to fine landlords that try to evict in retaliation against the tenant. This doesn’t give renters protection to violate a lease but allows them to bring up issues with the property without being threatened with eviction.
And third, a new process in the event of domestic abuse. This allows victims to sign a new lease and unties landlord’s hands when it comes to the abuser’s rights regarding their lease.
The president of the Apartment Association of Northwest Pennsylvania, Brandon Penn, stood behind these new rules through a statement in part saying,
“With the changes agreed upon by both parties, this is something that should be good for both tenants and landlord of Erie. Honestly this new ordinance doesn’t change much, it reinforces laws already in place,” said Penn. “All in all, what is stipulated in the ordinance seems to be fair. This will deter some of the bad landlords out there to be in business, making it easier for the rest of us.”
Before the ordinance passed, the definition of eviction was amended so that the measure would seem less broad in circumstance.