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landlord helpHere’s an interesting twist on rental inspections: the city of Groveland, Florida is charging tenants the inspection fees.

At least that’s the impact the city’s revved-up rental inspection program will have. The $32.50 fee will be added to the water bill. Local landlords say the common practice there is for tenants to have the water in their names, leaving them to grapple with whether this inspection program is fair.

According to the ordinance, an inspection is required every time a tenant moves out, and every three years for long-term tenants.

City officials say that any resulting upset to renters is worth it, declaring the program a “win-win” because renters benefit, and so does the city.  But landlords are not off the hook. After inspecting a number of properties, nearly one-third of the rental owners were cited for violations, which likely will result in fines, and three properties were condemned as rentals.

A local landlord who spoke out against the program describes it as too subjective, and expressed concern that it does not track what he sees throughout the rest of the state.

He also finds it unfair, given that some of the neighboring properties are in poorer condition than the rental properties.

The city council has no plans to change the law

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