Landlord shares positive reaction to new rental ordinance

A local landlord said she and her husband have a “very positive view” of the rental ordinance enacted by the city on Jan. 1.

The ordinance requires landlords to register all of their rental properties with the city but also offers a legal tool if they need to go before a judge to remove problem tenants involved in disruptive behavior, which is what Cathryn Redden, of Williamsport, sees as a big benefit.

“I’m happy to know that I have the city behind me if I need to take a tenant to court,” she said.

Redden and her husband, Keith, who own 24 rental properties on both Park Avenue and Rose Street, attended every meeting held by the city prior to the passing of the ordinance in November and were pleased with the way they were conducted.

“(They) were very well-organized … they offered lots of explanation from a legal standpoint by bringing in attorneys to speak,” she said.

Redden does have a concern or two about the ordinance, which allows for the compiling of a list of problem landlords – those who have had multiple codes violations or other problems – but not problem tenants.

“How do I know that ousted tenants aren’t just bouncing around from place to place?” she said. “That’s something that I’d like to see being worked on.”

Redden said that the majority of their tenants are long-term, but that when they have an opening, she and her husband are “very active in the screening process.”

She added that on the occasions that she has had to call police for problems at her rental properties, she’s had nothing but good experiences.

“The police are very responsive,” she said. “They’ve always been great.”