Evansville landlords are now required to register their rental properties and the deadline was Tuesday. The city says only 60% of landlords have done so.
Evansville and Vanderburgh County Building Commissioner Ron Beane says there are more than 29,000 rental properties in the city. The yearly renewal is $5 per unit per year. The city says this year more landlords have registered, but they aren’t sure they’ll see 100%.
Longtime landlord Monte Fetter has been in the business for 30 years and manages about 600 rental properties in Evansville. He’s one of many landlords who is now required to fill out the rental registry, but says it’s not likely everyone will.
“So many of these landlords feel like they’re made out to be the bad guy and there are really under circumstance that could be made better, but it’s not,” he said.
“53% of the housing in Evansville is rental property and that is high for the state, that’s high for the national average,” Beane said.
The rental property registry ordinance was passed in 2013. It requires landlords to provide information on each of their properties.
“The reason was to get a good data base of owners of property contact information so if there was police or fire run or other issues with the property, we would know right away who we need to contact,” Beane said.
The deadline was Tuesday at four and the city says only about 60% have done so.
“We would hope to have 100% compliance,” Beane said.
“I think the city has a lot or work to do reaching out to the average landlord bringing them in and making them feel part where they feel necessary to do this,” Fetter said.
Any landlord who has not registered can still do so but can face a fee.
“There is a $100 penalty per violation for those who do not register on time,” Beane said. “We have not began imposing that yet but we will at some point some sort of fine in the near future.”
A registered rental helps everybody, the city says especially the renters.
If you’re a landlord and haven’t registered your rental properties, you can contact the Building Commission’s office on how to do so.