SOUTH OGDEN -- The city has adopted a Good Landlord Program in an effort to improve its neighborhoods, increase tenant quality of life and reduce public safety costs by reducing crime.
The council approved the ordinance during a recent city council meeting. Under the program, rental dwelling licenses are issued to all residential rental units, the cost of which is significantly discounted if landlords agree to be part of the program and follow particular requirements for managing their properties.
Some of the requirements include agreeing to conduct criminal background checks on all new tenants and refusing to rent to applicants with significant criminal histories, attending an approved Good Landlord training course and agreeing to maintain their properties at a certain standard of living, such as no broken windows and having smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, City Manager Matt Dixon said.
"The program has had notable success in other cities, with Ogden reporting an 11.5 percent reduction in crime since the program's introduction in 2004," Dixon said.
Dixon said the city is in the process of contacting landlords and assisting them in joining the program.
"Our goal is to have all landlords participating in the program by the end of 2013," Dixon said.
According to the Utah Housing Coalition, local governments have been imposing disproportionate rental fees to rental units because of increased costs to municipalities. The increased costs come from numerous police calls and the need for firefighters. In response to those types of fees, the Utah Apartment Association designed the Good Landlord program several years ago.