The Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University recently issued a report on investor activity in Atlanta. Not surprisingly, the study found that investors were buying up property in neighborhoods where poverty and vacancy rates were high, and median home values were low.
A group of Montgomery County legislators have introduced a bill that has the slumlord lobby up in arms — the bill proposes Maryland property owners who own four or more rental units should be subject to rent control. It also mandates that landlords cannot force tenants to make them the beneficiary of renters’ insurance policies. These two things are definitely worth supporting. Unfortunately, the bill is a bit of a mishmash, with other landlord-tenant issues thrown in — not sure where it will end up.
Some New York City landlords have found a way to make money off the homeless, by operating for-profit SROs/rooming houses — and needless to say, the living conditions are less than acceptable.
I’ve always been fascinated with Centralia, PA — a mostly-abandoned town situated on top of a coal fire that’s been burning for decades. WGAL has a “then and now” slideshow that’s worth a look.
How to be successful in Maryland politics: Give your campaign contributors lucrative development contracts. Just don’t get caught…
CBS Baltimore reports that a recent house fire, in which one woman was found dead in the basement, was more than just a simple house fire.
So now the Mayor wants you to pay for trash pickup? I thought property taxes paid for that, but…perhaps I was wrong. Oh, and the City is dicking around with the Fire Department again. It’s all about solving the budget crisis, I guess so we’ll have more money to give to local developers.
Speaking of the budget, how would you balance our completely out of whack budget? There’s a website for that.
Maryland’s lead paint poisoning cases in children continues to decline, but current law needs to be reworked.
Old-school holdouts…every neighborhood has some, even in NYC. I sometimes prefer the ones in my neighborhood, over the new-ish neighbors. Other times, not so much.
Vacants as a blank canvas — WHY are we not doing this, Baltimore artists??? If anyone’s interested, please contact me. I’m in!
Speaking of art and blight, if you’re expecting the city government to fix this mess, forget it — artists, maybe. City government, no.
Baltimore City government, Pittsburgh (like so many other cities) is again ahead of you…even when it comes to ways to deal with blighted homes.
Another city considers a vacant structure tax – when is Baltimore going to start using this common-sense approach?
Pottstown, PA has a slumlord watch! The number is growing — meet the new addition to the family…say hello to the Golden Cockroach.
An interesting article from the Village Voice about Orthodox Jewish slumlords. In the end, let’s heap the blame on the Satmars?
Oops, sorry housing project residents. We’re taking out your park and putting in a charter school whether you like it or not. (Via @editbarry)
While I’m all for the Red Line, I have to wonder why yet another Baltimore transit system is going to by pass South Baltimore.
I blame my obssession with MLK Jr. Blvds across the country on Chris Rock — but apparently I’m not the only one.
Economists and other scholars like the idea of raising the property taxes on vacant abandoned homes — but our mayor would rather give you a $40 tax break. Oh, but not until 2013.
Maybe Rikki Spector could run for public office in…whatever town she really lives in.
First Mariner gets dumped by NASDAQ and feels like a jilted lover. Time to file an appeal! Hell hath no fury like a bank scorned.
Other cities are seeing an uptick in fires in vacant homes — Dallas, New Orleans, and Tulsa are the latest cities to experience the problem. Officials in Dallas and Tulsa suspect arson in the latest fires.
And a very belated thank you to Baltimore: Open City for a mention on their website…we love you, too!