Letter from the Executive Director for July 2019

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Letter from the Executive Director for July 2019, discussing certification, rent control, and server upgrades supporting our early warning system. In June we continued work on our certification plan, started to oppose the Massachusetts rent control bill, and completed our server upgrades. Previously we announced that the Certified Massachusetts Landlord™…

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MassLandlords Annual Elections: Volunteers Needed

MassLandlords is a 501(c)6 nonprofit with a mission to create better rental housing. We help new, current, and prospective members run profitable, compliant, quality businesses. We are democratically governed, and we need members in our community to step forward and help! Our Current Board of Directors We have five volunteers…

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Letter from the Executive Director for June 2019

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In May we developed our certification, wrote an amicus brief to defend rent escrow, wrote an op-ed to defend against right to counsel, and reflected on the short-term rental ban. Our plans for a Certified Massachusetts Landlord™ were presented to over 200 event participants. Overall feedback has been encouraging. Attendees…

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Policy Priorities for May 2019 Show Rent Control Fears

MassLandlords members are now primarily concerned with opposing the return of rent control to Massachusetts. This policy proposal is currently receiving a higher score and more consensus than any other issue on the survey. Close behind rent control is opposition to right of first refusal and just cause eviction, and…

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New Housing Court Judge and Clerk Magistrate

By Peter Vickery, Esq., Legislative Affairs Counsel Governor Charlie Baker named—and the Governor’s Council recently approved—two nominees for the Housing Court, both of them from Western Massachusetts. Jonathan J. Kane Associate Justice, Housing Court On May 1, 2019, the Governor’s Council confirmed Amherst resident Jonathan J. Kane for the position…

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Emotional Support Animals: Open Letter to Attorney General Maura Healey

By Peter Vickery, Esq., Legislative Affairs Counsel Dear Attorney General Healey: With regard to emotional support animals (ESAs) MassLandlords would be grateful for an advisory from your office making clear that the documents provided by certain online entities are not sufficient. We would appreciate your leadership on this consumer-protection problem,…

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Waterproof Laminate Flooring put to the Test: Claims vs Data

Some manufacturers say they offer waterproof laminate flooring. Is this marketing spin? Or can wood really be waterproof? Landlords need flooring suitable for heavy use in a kitchen, bathroom, or mud room, and waterproof wood sounds appealing. MassLandlords set out to test several different options available off-the-shelf at a Massachusetts…

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Worcester’s New Landlord-Tenant Guarantee Program is Finally Here!

In May the City of Worcester launched a Landlord-Tenant Guarantee (formerly known as Insurance Against Homelessness) modeled after similar programs successfully implemented in Washington, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and other states. Worcester landlords take note: If you typically avoid renting to riskier tenants, despite having vacancies, MassLandlords now has a solution!  (A…

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Rent Control Redux? The $64,000 Question (aka the Bologna Story)

By Peter Vickery, Esq., Legislative Affairs Counsel This article reviews the story of Vincent and Laura Bologna, landlords who were famously bankrupted by Massachusetts rent control. Massachusetts had rent control from 1970 to 1994. In 1994, the voters of Massachusetts voted in favor of Question 9 and abolished rent control.…

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Can Massachusetts Landlords Charge for Solar?

Massachusetts is in many ways a leader when it comes to solar power incentives, but we have paid little attention to landlord-tenant solar. The new SMART program subsidizes solar power and improves on the old SREC program in one major way, discussed below. But SMART still leaves landlords with little…

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