Mom and pop landlords, defined as real estate investors who own 10 or fewer properties, own about half of all rental units nationwide. And, according to CoreLogic, a real estate data company, the number of small investors is growing. In 2018, they were responsible for 60% of all purchases, as compared to 48% in 2013.
Let's get clear on who the target of the latest proposed House bill, "Take Responsibility for Workers and Families Act" will be, at least as it relates to landlords.
It's the mom and pop landlord.
It's the people who have often put their entire life savings into a few properties hoping to build up their assets or creating a retirement income to supplement their lackluster Social Security benefits.
And now, Mom and Pop landlords are under attack.
First, there was the Emergency Rent and Mortgage Cancellation Legislation.
It began with a non-starter, like a shot across the bow called the "Emergency Rent and Mortgage Cancellation Legislation" sponsored by Rep. Ilham Omar. You can read that proposed bill here.
This bill first floated the idea of a Congress mandated payment cancellation for all rent effective April 2020 and lasting the duration of the national emergency. During that time, no one could be evicted for nonpayment of rent. No interest or late payment could accrue.
Landlords could apply for help with the payments since they now bear the brunt of the cost of maintaining a property including mortgage interest, property tax, insurance, HOA dues, repairs, and the like.
But there's a catch.
Under the "Emergency Rent and Mortgage Cancellation Legislation", if the landlord gets help, then he has to agree to some terms:
Requirements – Landlords who receive relief funds through the HUD program must agree to the following fair renting terms for a period of 5 years:
1. a rent freeze;
2. just-cause evictions;
** mandatory documentation with any just-cause eviction;
1. no source of income discrimination;
2. coordination with local housing authorities to make new vacancies eligible to voucher holders;
3. provision of 10 percent equity to tenants; and,
**no admissions restrictions on the basis of:
1. sexual identity or orientation,
2. gender identity or expression,
3. conviction or arrest record,
4. credit history, or
5. immigration status."
If you're a mom and pop landlord, congratulations! You just got a new partner! It's your tenant who hasn't put a dime into the property and has lived there for free for months.