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The Rent Is Too Damn High!

Written by Harold Tucker, Spectrum Enterprises

I receive calls in my office a few times a year from tenants who are often confused about Section 42 rules. The most common call is about rent. The confusion comes from that tenant’s in LIHTC housing often think their rent is based on their actual imputed income. This leads to the many questions and complaints we all hear. A few go like this:

“I know my neighbor makes more money than I do! Why I am I paying the same rent as them?”

“My income just decreased. Shouldn’t I pay less for rent now?”

“I know management calculated my rent incorrectly. Now I’m paying more rent than I should. THE RENT IS TOO DAMN HIGH!”

It is important that owners and managers educate applicants and tenants on how their rents are calculated. In the LIHTC program max rents are based on bedroom sizes, not a household’s income. Two households with varying income may be paying the same rent if they both live a 2 bedroom unit.

In addition, I highly recommend that during the application process that managers/owners let applicants know that income is based on a conservative calculation method. That income may be calculated higher than what they are currently making.

By having these type of conversations with your residents many misunderstanding regarding rent can be nipped in the bud.

Thanks and have a great year. THE RENT IS NOT TOO DAMN HIGH!


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