Rent Control: Bad Then, Bad Now

I can’t believe that my local state representative, whom I’ve met several times and who came and talked with one of my University Seminar classes, will be introducing a rent control law for mobile home parks in the next state legislative session. Technically, the law requires justification of rent increases, instead of an absolute price ceiling, but the impact is the same.

OK, econ students, read this article and predict the impact of a rent control law on the mobile home market if it passes. Understanding that mobile home residents are lower income and probably hard hit by the recession, and certainly deserving of our sympathy, is this the best way to help them?

Extra credit – what will be the impact on other markets (forms) of lower cost housing?

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1 comment to Rent Control: Bad Then, Bad Now

  • Albert Sukoff

    I edit the newsletter for the Berkeley Property Owners Association in Berkeley, CA. Your posting came to my attention though a grape vine of owners affected by rent control.

    It is my understanding that Oregon is one of about forty states which have formally preempted rent controls. The Oregon code, at Paragraph 91.225, “Local Rent Control Prohibited”, states:

    The Legislative Assembly finds that there is a social and economic need to insure an adequate supply of affordable housing for Oregonians. The Legislative Assembly also finds that the imposition of general restrictions on housing rents will disrupt an orderly housing market, increase deferred maintenance of existing housing stock, lead to abandonment of existing rental units and create a property tax shift from rental-owned to owner-occupied housing. The Legislative Assembly declares that the imposition of rent control on housing in the State of Oregon is a matter of statewide concern. Therefore a city or county shall not enact any ordinance or resolution which controls the rent that may be charged for the rental of any dwelling unit.

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