Portland Initiates Plan for Landlord Registration Mandate

Posted By: Jonathan Clay Industry News, Advocacy Alerts, MFNW Community Updates, Portland/SW Washington,

Wednesday morning July 25th, the Portland City Council voted 4-0 via an emergency amendment to begin the process of creating a mandatory landlord registration program starting in 2019.

Mayor Wheeler proclaimed this program was necessary to collect data on Portland’s inventory of rental properties to better inform the city’s housing policies. He cites similar municipal landlord registration programs in Seattle, Gresham and Eugene as models.

The registration would apply to all landlords – from those merely renting a room in their home, to professional property management companies. The landlord registration would be included as a part of the annual city Business License tax filing. The first deadline to register would come on Tax Day, April 15th, 2019.

City Council voted to waive the $500 penalty for non-registration for the first year only, anticipating the challenge to communicate this policy to citizens and gain compliance.

The city has allocated $648,000 to fund the first year of the landlord registry. In 2020 they look to landlords for ongoing funding for the registry. Further details on the registry are still to be determined, and the Mayor pledged to work with the Rental Services Commission, landlords and housing advocates to craft the best system.