Montgomery County Council members are proposing legislation to conserve affordable housing and protect low- and middle-income renters from being priced out. As reported in The Washington Post:
Montgomery County, where the Hampshire Tower building is located, will need 33,000 to 50,000 more housing units over the next decade for families making $100,000 or less, according to data from the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University. About half of those units should be affordable to households earning less than $50,000 a year.
Unlike the District, the county does not have strong rent-control laws — a reflection, critics say, of the political clout enjoyed by landlords and real estate developers. And although the city of Takoma Park has a rent-stabilization statute, the owners of the Hampshire Tower complex won an exemption after agreeing to renovate the property.
But with housing prices on the rise, and a growing gap between the county’s poor and its very wealthy, the County Council this fall will consider legislation that imposes new rent restrictions — especially at certain affordable properties, such as Hampshire Tower, that are located near mass transit.
The legislation proposed by Elrich would eliminate those fees, require landlords to justify any rent increases that exceed the recommended guidelines and cap the rent at certain properties near mass transit. The bill, co-sponsored by council members Nancy Navarro (D-Mid-County) and Tom Hucker (D-Eastern County), is to be taken up by the council this fall.
For more information read the full article in The Washington Post.