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Florida landlords trying to stop rent control initiative

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A group of landlords, apartment managers, and realtors want to stop voters from taking steps to implement year-long rent controls in one of the fastest-growing metropolitan areas in the United States. increase.

Orange County voters will go to the polls in the fall to decide on an initiative aimed at limiting the extent to which landlords can raise rents. .

Florida Apartment Association The Florida Real Estate Association filed a lawsuit last week to nullify the initiative.

Florida law prohibits rent control ordinances except in an emergency, and the current situation falls short of that standard, according to the association.

US rents hit record highs as buyers were forced out of the market

Orlando, Florida, Lake Eola, skyline and skyscrapers at night. (iStock/iStock)

The association also argues that it could have the unintended consequence of discouraging the construction of new apartments and other housing.

It is said that there is a shortage in the prefecture. 26,500 homes.

Orange County includes the city of Orlando, the state’s amusement park hub.

Orlando Amusement Park Photo Montage

Orange County, Florida, is known to many as the home of Disney and Universal Resorts. (iStock/iStock)

According to the 2020 Census, Orange County has grown from 1.1 million to 1.4 million people over the past decade.

“It is contrary to the public interest and the interests of plaintiffs and their members to allow the Rent Control Ordinance to be put to vote or enforced by Orange County if the ordinance is illegal and void, and is hostile,” the association said. said. in court papers.

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The Rent Control Ordinance was barely approved by Orange County’s county commission earlier this month.

That is, the rise in the rent of collective housing, Consumer Price Index. This ordinance does not apply to luxury units, single-family homes, or vacation rentals.

Swans swimming in Orlando, Florida

Ballots have not yet been printed, but already a group of Florida landlords and real estate agents are trying to stop voters from deciding on measures to enforce rent control. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File/AP Newsroom)

Stephanie Porta, co-founder of the social justice group Florida Rising, said, “For years, renters have asked this committee to do something about the next emergency we are facing right now.” “Corporate landlords, real estate investors and developers are raising prices and posting record profits while hardworking Orange County residents are being forced out of their communities.”

Violators face fines of up to $1,000 per day for the first violation, and fines not exceeding $15,000 for each violation. Landlords may request exceptions to the restrictions under certain conditions.

According to legislation passed by the commissioner, asking rent per unit in Orange County increased from $1,357 in 2020 to $1,697 in 2021.

Big rent increases may finally be ‘coming to an end’, economists say

The national median asking rent rose 14% year-over-year in July to $2,032, according to Redfin.

In Cincinnati, Ohio, asking rents are up 31% year-over-year. american subway Tracked by Redfin.

Nine other metros, including Nashville, Tennessee: 26%, Pittsburgh, PA: 24%, and New York, NY: 23%, saw asking rents increase more than 20% year-over-year.

miami beach during the day

Miami Beach passed rent control measures in the 1960s and 1970s. (iStock/iStock)

In the 1960s and 1970s, the City of Miami Beach imposed rent control measures before passing Florida laws restricting rent control.


Rent control measures have also been passed in California and Oregon, as well as in major metropolitan areas such as St. Paul, Minnesota and Portland, Oregon.

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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