New Haven is cracking down on landlords who fail to register their multi-family homes with the city. A letter was recently sent out asking landlords to register their properties, but there are about 1,200 who didn't reply.
“In many cases, people don't read the letter all the way through. They read the letter where it says this is for absentee, non-owner multi-family, so they stop reading there. But it goes on to say, if you feel you're exempt from this, then you are required to do ABC, give us the proper documents to prove that you're exempt,” said Rafael Ramos, Deputy Director of Housing Code Enforcement.
Those owners who live in their buildings are exempt from getting the mandatory inspections. However, they still have to register with the city. Landlords who don't live in their buildings need to have it inspected. Those who haven't done it will be called by a collection agency and fined $100.
“The fines are to encourage landlords to register their properties so we know where they are when we need them when there's an emergency, and second, it requires an inspection of the property for basic health and safety,” said Ramos.
Alderman Doug Hausladen represents Ward 7 and says these calls may be a wake-up call for those landlords.
“I think that's going to make people react and come to the table and negotiate,” said Hausladen.
He says with 70 percent of New Haven's housing market being rentals, the inspections and registrations are important.
“I think the hardest thing is actually communicating with our absentee landlords. You can understand who owns the building, but knowing who is the property manager and how to get in contact is very difficult,” said Hausladen.