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LETTER: Support Malden Tenants United, Tenant Organizing

Howard McGowen is a member of Malden/Medford Tenants United: maldentenentsunited@gmail.com

In order to protect Malden against "Slum Landlords" - those prove "by their track record" to be lax in maintenance of proprieties - it is time for the councillors to pay attention to the needs of citizens and to take action needed to protect their safety and quality of life. They should become aware and pay attention to the situations in their wards and citywide.

I ask John Matheson Ward #3 Councillor and Jim Nestor Ward #4 to and support the efforts of the tenants in their areas to organize against increasing rent.

A tenant association (or tenant organization) may be made up oftenants who live in a certain building or development, or membership may be on a larger scale -- i.e. renters in a city who belong to acounty or citywide local tenants' association. These groups are formed and maintained with a number of goals in mind, including:

  • Informing tenants of their rights under local, state, and federal law.
  • Organizing and lobbying on behalf of tenants and tenants' rights,especially at city and county levels of government.Improving tenant-landlord relationships, building conditions
  • Securing services for tenants under a "strength in numbers" model.
  • Encouraging regular communication and community awareness among tenants.

 

Tenant Associations: The Right to Organize

Tenant associations usually hold periodic meetings in order to encourage active tenant participation and to promote tenants' awareness of the association's role and available services. Just as most employers are prohibited from discriminating or retaliating against employees who have joined a labor union, federal and state fair housing laws dictate that landlords cannot take any negative action based solely on a tenants' participation or membership in a tenant association or similar organization.

Examples of prohibited landlord conduct include arbitrary rent increases, refusal to make necessary repairs and threats of eviction. 

In addition, a landlord may not prevent a tenant association from meeting in a common area on the building's premises if other groups are allowed to do so, as long as the circumstances of the meeting (i.e. time, place, noise level) are reasonable.

Getting Involved

If you are a tenant in a large residential building or development, or if you rent your home in a mid- to large-size city, you may have the opportunity to get involved in a tenant association or organization.

To find out more, contact your city's housing department.

 SUPPORT THE MALDEN/MEDORD TENANTS UNITED: maldentenantsunited@gmall.com

Readers: What do you think about tenant organizing?

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

howard mcgowan July 21, 2012 at 04:49 PM
MARK AND OTHERS (LAST POST)This is not the only thing going on they are committing many illegal activiities going on the intimindate, harrass and bother tenants with wholesale eviction notices towing of cars to mention a few. It has come dow in court that they do not have a good case for raising rent to what they call "Market rate" for Malden. They have a sub par product having trouble meeting the building code. Now is the time for the City Administration to step up and enforce the laws. I think that the Hillide Urban Properities IncLLC is up for a lawsuit to enforce adhering to the law.
Reality Stinks August 18, 2012 at 04:51 PM
People are missing the point here you are tenant at will- this means for any reason the landlord can ask you to leave with 30 day notice under mass law and tenant can do the same. I have seen these units and I know of the prices both old and new. Don't be fooled many people will be tripping over themselves to live walking distance to the train for these prices. The majority of the current tenants of these buildings are not low income they make a good to excellent income, I don't feel bad that they now have to pay fair market rent. Yet they simply do not want to pay more for their housing expenses and they are willing to protest. I don't care If your landlord owns a two family or is a corporation you have no right jeopardize their financial success because you don't believe your rent increase was un-just. Free trade, we live in America like it or not. These units are small and will never be luxury however their value lies in the location. Every other property surrounding is collecting higher rents even properties in conditions sub par do collect higher rent. If you think not you have not look at the rental market lately. Right now it is a Landlord market not a renters market all these units will be rented quickly don't be foolish if you have a good place keep it sign a lease lock in your price now then you will have lease protection if you think you can get a better place do so move on. (No I don't work for the landlord I am a well informed and intelligent citizen)
howard mcgowan August 18, 2012 at 05:26 PM
Great speech Now comment on Habitabilty responsibility of the Landlord. PLUS the State Sanitary Code violations un acceptable and really criminal that that can/and maybe cited by the board of Health or the Tenants. We respect the right of the landlord but lets see the rights of the Tenants(the customer) are considered and respected. Greed is the name of the game not a good profit for the product offered By the landlords count (Malden Observer) 70 of 266 vacant apartments as of August No rush to rent at the asking price?
DannyBoy August 18, 2012 at 06:03 PM
Reality Stinks: since you claim to be a "well informed and intelligent citizen", you must have searched on Google, using the keywords "Anwar Faisal Alpha Management" and come across facts that describe this new owner and his RE management company as the poster boy for slumlords everywhere. I'm curious that you don't even mention that anywhere in your comment, or is that omission intentional? You have no credibility.
Marc Levine August 19, 2012 at 02:33 AM
Has anybody seen the ugly looking "BILLBOARD" Alpha has put up in the front of 17-19 Washington St. That is the most disgusting sign (awning) I have ever seen in my life. Kind of a wolf marking his territory. As I said Alpha IS entitled to "SOME" kind of increase but if enough to cover his HUGE mortgage payment. He probably mortgaged the place to the max based on his proposed increases. From what I hear people are giving in and paying the increases. If you are now paying market rent, get your monies worth. New kitchens, new bathrooms and windows, dishwasher, workout room. Get the point!!! You are going to pay full market price demand full market services. Any replies for Alpha's defense....bring it on!!!!!!

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