Rent Control Talks Resume In Minneapolis

Rent ControlIf you have a tenant who pays rent on time, keeps their unit in good order, and is pleasant to interact with, you may be reluctant to raise the rent.

And if you own an investment property in Minneapolis and haven’t raised the rent in a long time, you may want to do so soon. That’s because if some rent control advocates in the city of Minneapolis get their way, rent control may be retroactive.

That should scare you.

For a complete picture of what renter’s rights members of the panel recommended to the city, join me and Minneapolis Area Association Director of Government Affairs Eric Myers for a Zoom call on Tuesday, January 17th at 5 pm. Myers will discuss his experience on the Minneapolis Housing/Rent Stabilization Work Group, and the restrictive rent control policy proposal sent to the Minneapolis City Council for review.

After 10 weeks of discussions, the Work Group basically came to an impasse. Tenants and tenant advocates on the panel, who outnumbered those who own, manage, or work in the real estate field, passed a rent control proposal that recommends Minneapolis a policy as restrictive as the one in St Paul. The 3% cap, since modified by that city’s council, resulted in a virtual stop of all new multifamily development in St Paul.

The property owners and allies group recommended the council adopt a more flexible policy, with higher caps and exemptions for new construction and low-income properties.

From here, the city council may decide to craft a rent control policy to send to Mayor Frey for his signature. Frey has promised to veto any such proposal. The 13-member council would need 9 council members to support rent control in order to override the veto.

While Frey’s threatened veto appears to take the pressure of combating rent control off property owners, nothing could be further from the truth.

We’ve all learned politicians are most interested in the policies that get them re-elected.  Radio silence from property owners, while tenant advocates shout at council members using mics and speakers set to 11, can make even the staunchest ally think twice over a vote that may cost them their job.