The Tampa City Council Thursday voted unanimously to approve an ordinance requiring landlords to give tenants a 60-day notice of rental increases.
The ordinance only counts for increases over 5% and adds a requirement that month-to-month lease terminations have a 30-day notification requirement.
The move comes on the heels of an analysis by real estate website Zumper that found rents in Tampa have increased by 37.5% over the last year. Rising rents have created what City Council members have called an “emergency crisis.” Florida has been dubbed the “least affordable state to live in,” with Tampa Bay specifically seeing some of the highest rates of inflation and rent increases in the nation.
Some housing advocates, including Robin Lockett of Florida Rising, asked for a 90-day notice requirement. But city staff said going with 60 days puts Tampa more in line with related state law.
“There is a Florida statute that provides that if a lease includes a provision stating that a landlord or tenant has to give notice to terminate a lease, that period cannot be more than 60 days,” Assistant City Attorney Rebecca Johns said.
“Basically, Florida statute is limiting the time period to provide notice to the other person to terminate the lease. Raising the rent is basically an offer to renew the lease at the end of the term, therefore I equate that as a 60-day notice period.”
Johns said the ordinance got some pushback from the Bay Area Apartment Association, which thought the 60-day notice could amount to impairment.
“We don’t believe this is impairment because we’re not affecting leases as they occur right now,” Johns said. “We are affecting the notice provisions for the lease in the future. We’re not affecting any ongoing obligations of the current lease.”
The City Council has taken a number of steps to address the mounting housing crisis. Tampa Mayor Jane Castor is more than halfway to her 2019 goal of adding 10,000 affordable units to the city’s inventory. And Council member Luis Viera successfully revived an ordinance requiring landlords to notify renters of protections under the Tenants Bill of Rights. It also prevents landlords from excluding government subsidies like Veterans Affairs benefits or Section 8.
But rents have continued to rise. The median rent in Tampa for a one bedroom apartment was $1,580 at the end of March. One month later, it rose to $1,660, eclipsing the state median.
During her State of the City address, Castor made the case that more robust transportation investment, including the proposed reintroduction of the All For Transportation tax, could be a key aspect to addressing affordable housing needs.
Build apartments, not rail
May 19, 2022 at 3:14 pm
“During her State of the City address, Castor made the case that more robust transportation investment, including the proposed reintroduction of the All For Transportation tax, could be a key aspect to addressing affordable housing needs.”
There is no logic to that at all. What city has the greatest transportation investment? New York City. Where are housing costs among the highest? Same place. The way to have more affordable housing is to make it easier for developers to develop more affordable housing: density and zoning, infrastructure requirements, rules on financing, guaranteed leases, etc.
May 19, 2022 at 6:23 pm
Jane Castor is unfit to govern. How are people expected to work in a city that they can’t afford to live in? People, especially people of color can’t even find sustainable entry level jobs to support the cost of a 1/1. Let alone raise a family. She is directly responsible for displacing Tampa natives and low income earners.
May 19, 2022 at 8:42 pm
When do we vote for mayor again, I will campaign So hard against her I can’t wait! This is the most ridiculous, ineffective proposal ever! This doesn’t help people who have a current lease! Sixty days 100 days what does it matter, at this point there’s no where to go!! Ha 10,000 affordable homes lololol that doesn’t cover all the people who were evicted or given non-renewal so the landlords/owners could raise the rent $500 plus! This is hilarious property owners are worried 60 days can mess things up for them boohoo! City council is on the property owners side, not the people who have been living here and gone through multiple sales and management for 8 years! More transportation and taxes what a joke! Who is that going to help? Is castor going to supplement the rents for us? Hell no! If city council wanted to do the right thing they would have put a cap on rental increases of 5%! Castor said NO! That would deter developers from coming to Tampa!!! There’s no place to build here, oh wait I get it, the plan is to buy out all the older complexes that are still somewhat affordable and build big new upscale projects and ask $3000 a month! Where is all that red light ticket money going anyway Jane? I hate those cameras, I voted against you then and I will vote against you next time!
May 21, 2022 at 10:57 am
This is THE WORST MAYOR we’ve EVER HAD!!!!!!!!!!!! We are in crisis and what does she do? Starts a ‘rental assistance program’ that was full in a few hours and she included people earning up to $75k PER YEAR to qualify! What a BIG middle finger to the people who actually earn far below the median household income who actually need the help! I know why..she’s helping her rich buddies who rent in downtown Tampa. That’s all she cares about. I feel this is intentional. There is a LOT less diversity in my apartment community where my rent was raised $400 per month. I work for the state and do not even earn $15 per hour. My rent is now $1600 per month. There is NO WHERE else to go! Even income restricted property are FULL and have 1+ year wait lists. Working, I don’t qualify for any other pgorams and due to my low income I can’t even buy a house since those prices shot up also. RIP Tampa (we had a good run there).
Comments are closed.