City Rent Certification?

3 Replies

I've been looking at multi-family properties in Michigan. I noticed that many of the property descriptions mention a "city rent certification" or something to that effect. Can someone please clarify what this means? (I live in California and have not heard of this practice.) Thanks!

@Rachel Kokosenski

I live in Allentown, PA but we have something similar to that here. As a landlord, you have to register your property with the city as a rental. You especially have to do it if the property was previously owner occupied and now being turned into a rental. For us here, it must first get a certificate of occupancy (it certifies that the property is safe to live in) then you pay $75 to the city to get the rental property certification. Honestly, its just a way for the city to generate more revenue for themselves. So do as what is required and you will be alright.

Cities will typically have an inspection process whereby they do an inspection of the property to make sure it's safe and things are up to code. Very location specific and usually towns under certain sizes don't require them.

Here, they're not too bad, but there's always little things that we'll get dinged on that we may overlook, such as a handrail having a return, a smoke detector in just the right spot, a hole in a screen, etc.

Thank you for the feedback. I guess it is good for the tenants so they don't get stuck in a dangerous home. Sounds like just another hoop to jump through for us! 

Free eBook from BiggerPockets!

Ultimate Beginner's Guide Book Cover

Join BiggerPockets and get The Ultimate Beginner's Guide to Real Estate Investing for FREE - read by more than 100,000 people - AND get exclusive real estate investing tips, tricks and techniques delivered straight to your inbox twice weekly!

  • Actionable advice for getting started,
  • Discover the 10 Most Lucrative Real Estate Niches,
  • Learn how to get started with or without money,
  • Explore Real-Life Strategies for Building Wealth,
  • And a LOT more.

Lock We hate spam just as much as you

Create Lasting Wealth Through Real Estate

Join the millions of people achieving financial freedom through the power of real estate investing

Start here