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LETTER: Greedy corporate interests oppose rent control

The April 2 commentary by Robert Fellner of the Nevada Policy Research Institute, “The false promise of rent control,” sounds like it was written by a greedy corporate American.

What Mr. Fellner fails to accept is that Nevada landlords can charge whatever they want, according to Nevada law. Rent control in Santa Monica (like he mentioned), for example, puts a limit on how much rent can increase year over year on existing tenants. The reason it’s so expensive to live there has nothing to do with rent control and everything to do with location and demand.

I own a home in Hawthorne, California (18 miles from Santa Monica), which also has rent control. I can still get fair-market value for my rental. However, I can’t just increase my rent to whatever I want. I have to follow the mandated allowance. This allows tenants to know how much their rent can increase. This is unlike Nevada, where the majority of rentals are run by greedy Wall Street investors who found a wonderful playground and have no issues with destroying this state.

Mr. Fellner’s essay implies that rent control may remove incentives for landlords to improve their properties. False. There are property owners who, with or without rent control, will be slumlords because they are only profiteers.

Mr. Fellner opposes rent control for tenants and offers no real solution to stop exploiting tenants. I guess his organization’s mission statement is on point about “promoting policy ideas with the principles of limited government, individual liberty and free markets.”

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