How often do most landlords raise rent?

How often do most landlords raise rent?

Once a year when a lease expires or every 30 days with a notice if you are month to month. I have been a landlord for over 25 years and I have a system that has worked for me. It is a business, like any other business. I prefer year leases. Looking at the rental market and seeing if a rent adjustment is in order on an annual basis when the lease comes up for renewal is a natural interval. For good tenants, I generally aim to allow rents to fall 10% below market. Good tenants get a 10% discount from market. So often at the end of the first year, I won’t increase the rental rate. In employment, raises are often given on an annual basis.

Providing rental housing is a business. In my opinion, the idea that price increases “should” only reflect increases in cost is ludicrous. Prices are set by markets. If someone wants to leave rents unchanged of 10+ years, that’s fine if that’s how they want to run their business. That isn’t my business. In my view it’s absurd to expect the price for an apartment, or a person’s wages, or the price of cars, or food prices to be what they were 10 years ago. In spending power, that would mean the rent actually decreased by nearly on fifth due to inflation.

If you are renting month to month I would say they could raise the rent 11 times in a year (30 day notice is all that is required to raise rent). How often “should they raise rent”? That depends. In some jurisdictions there is a limit to the total percentage rent may be increased in a year due to COVID or other reasons. Look in the mirror and ask how often you ask the landlord for services you could do yourself (unclog a sprinkler head, spray for ants, etc.). Otherwise look around where you live and see if what you pay is competitive with other rental options. Moving is one option.

So It depends on whether you have a month to month lease or if you have a one year lease. With a month to month lease your landlord can raise the rent every month if he wants. It is up to you to decide if you want to stay and pay the increase. With a one year lease, unless stated otherwise, the agreed upon rent that is in your lease should not increase during the year. There are a few exceptions to this so check your lease agreement. Did your landlord put a provision in there that states the rent can be increased if taxes are increased or if your water/sewer bill increases? Another valid increase, if stated in the lease, is if electric is included in your rent and you’ve had a spike in your electric usage. Are you running your air conditioner 24/7 or are you using your dryer more frequently? Space heaters, dehumidifiers, and large fish tank filters will also spin the electric meter.

Unless you live in a rent controlled area, your landlord can increase the rent to whatever he wants. If you have a month to month lease then he could increase it monthly. I don’t think that would be a very smart business decision but legally he would be within his rights. If you have a six month lease he can raise it after 6 months. A 12 month lease he can raise it after 12 months. Your landlord is obligated to inform you 30 days prior to the increase of his intention. He cannot just tell you when the rent is due. It will then be your decision to decide if you want to stay and pay the increase or find another place that is more affordable and move out.

If you plan on living where you are for a long period of time you may want to ask your landlord for a long term lease with a specific rent amount during that period of time. That would be a win/win for the both of you. You would know that there wouldn’t be any increases during the period of time during your stay and your landlord would know he would not need to go through the efforts of finding a new tenant during your lease time.

I’m a landlord, and none of my properties have any rent control (whether by law or contract).As a general rule, I tend to keep my properties at market rate. If the market moves, I move with it. If not, not. (How do I determine what the market rate is? I put myself in a prospective tenant’s shoes and try to look for a similar apartment in a similar neighborhood to the one I’m renting out.)

But beyond the general rule, I’m happy to give a discount (in the form of not raising rent, even if the market moves) for good tenants. If there are good tenants in the place, I’ll go 10–15% below market to keep them.

And I tell them as such. When that time of year comes around to start thinking about renewing, I “show my work” in an email to them. Along the lines of: “Hey, here are a few listings for comparable properties. Based on those listings, I think the market rate for the place is X. You guys are great tenants, so if you like I’m happy to renew the lease for next year at the currently-prevailing rate of Y.”

 I have a system that has worked for me. This may not be good for others. When a new tenant moved in I ask them if they would like a month to month lease or if they would prefer a one year lease. If someone wants a month to month lease then they are aware that if there is a spike in water usage, taxes, etc. then I can raise the rent to accommodate. If someone chooses the one year lease then if there are any increases then I just pay them. I would not pass them on to the tenant. In addition to the one year lease, I agree to never raise the rent for as long as they continue to live there,!as long as they always pay the rent on time. I have had multiple tenants live in the condo 3–4 years. Even though I might not be getting top rent I have the peace of mind that I have a tenant wanting to live there for a long time. My current tenant has lived in the condo for 3 years and wants to continue living there through when her daughter graduates from high school which is in another 4 years. I know if I had to rent it out to someone new I could get more rent but I would have costs to get the condo ready for a new tenant. I would much prefer to keep the same tenant at the lower rent.

However, rent laws ussually vary from state to state so you better consult local lawyer before finalising anything.

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