Bedbugs. Crumbling buildings. Poor plumbing.
Detroit landlords are being slow to respond to a crackdown to make sure their properties are up to code, reports Christie MacDonald:
Six months after Detroit launched a campaign to inspect all rentals, city officials admit they’ve struggled to get landlords to follow through with the housing requirement.
Only 11 percent of registered rental properties — 52 of 468 — had city clearance to operate in the first targeted ZIP code as of last week’s deadline. Mayor Mike Duggan kicked off the crackdown in February starting with the east side’s 48215 in hopes of making rentals safe after more than a decade of little city enforcement.
Most landlords have ignored their calls to follow the rules and get their units inspected, officials said. In 48215 on the city’s border with Grosse Pointe Park, landlords who haven’t complied began receiving $750 tickets last week.
And now that the Aug. 1 deadline passed, tenants in unlicensed properties can put their rent in escrow with the city’s help without facing eviction, a controversial part of Detroit’s updated housing ordinance enacted early this year.