Councilmembers reached a consensus on the view for a rental inspection program in the city designed for long-term rentals.
Assistant City Manager Lauren Rose said short-term rentals, such as those through Vrbo or AirBnB, were omitted because the impacts of them are unknown and there is pending legislation at the state level. Council received an update on a rental inspection program during the Monday, May 15, meeting after holding previous sessions at meetings earlier this year.
Rose presented three options: a registration only, a registration and inspection and no action. A registration component would help gather more information about an owner or property management company for long-term rentals of single-family residences in the city.
Currently, the city only obtains the first and last page of a lease and the name of a property owner, said Rose. The option would require contact information so an owner or management company could be contacted in the event of an issue.
“We just want to be able to get in touch with property owners; that’s the challenge we’re experiencing,” Rose said.
The registration would expire on Dec. 31 of each year with renewal required by Jan. 30 of the following year. Owners of multiple long-term rentals in the city would be required to register multiple times, and a new registration would be required if a change in ownership or property management company occurred.
The inspection component would denote interior and exterior items on a posted checklist that a city inspector would examine to ensure a rental property is inhabitable. The inspections would take place any time a change in tenancy occurred.
“We’re not trying to be cumbersome, but it can be difficult to conduct an inspection when a resident is already residing at the property,” Rose said. “This is a cleaner way to make sure we’re checking off things before somebody is occupying the space.”
Council decided to proceed with an inspection only program, on which Rose will present specifics at a later meeting.
Additionally, Police Chief Bryan Sylvester presented an update to the animal shelter project, including the total cost of around $4.99 million. The total cost falls just shy of the $5 million allocated by the 2021 bond provision for a new animal shelter in the city.
To help keep the project under budget, Sylvester said there was some value engineering done to ensure essential items for the shelter were included and any extraneous flourishes were omitted.
“We’re still accounting for all of the services, programming, availability and kennel capacity that makes the proposed shelter what it is without fluff,” Sylvester said. “We also looked at value engineering our lighting components within the facility as well as some smaller items.”
For the full story, see the May 25 issue of The Sachse News.