Portland Oregon Tenant Law Changes – Learn More About Changes For 2021

2021 is officially here and with the start of the new year comes changes to Portland Oregon Tenant Laws.

In this article, we will break down the latest changes and provide you with information on how they will affect the rental market this year.


Oregon Eviction Moratorium Extended Until June 30th

The first big news that affects both landlords and tenants is that the eviction moratorium has been extended until June 30th.

Unlike previous extensions of the eviction moratorium, tenants must fill out a declaration of financial hardship and submit that form to their landlords for the eviction moratorium protections to continue applying to them.

  • House Bill 4401, also provides $200 million total for landlords and tenants. $50 million goes to tenants in the form of rent relief and $150 million goes to landlord compensation.
  • To apply for landlord compensation, landlords must be willing to forgive up to 80% of their tenant’s back rent.
  • What’s also notable about this legislation is that if a landlord plans on evicting their tenant, they must warn them up to 90 days in advance, especially if the landlord plans on selling the property or turning it into their permanent residence.

Oregon’s move to extend the eviction moratorium will provide tenants with peace of mind in knowing that they will be protected from eviction during the winter months.

Even though the eviction moratorium has been extended, a ban on foreclosures in Oregon has not been extended and this is a cause for concern to housing advocates. Some tenants may still find themselves homeless because their landlords fell behind on their mortgages.

As of today, the Federal ban on foreclosures is in effect until January 31st so there’s still time for lawmakers to extend Oregon’s foreclosure ban at least until July so that the rental market can hopefully get back on track once Covid-19 has been defeated.

Changes To Security Deposits In Portland

Security deposits have also been changed in Portland in the effort to make the local rental market more affordable to prospective tenants.

Landlords cannot charge more than $600, or more than half of one month’s rent and there are more requirements as to how the security deposit can be used including the following:

  • Upon move-in, landlords must provide their tenants with the name and address of the bank where their security deposit will be held.
  • Security deposits must be held in a separate holding account within two weeks of the landlord receiving funds.
  • Landlords must provide tenants with a written notice within 30 days if the security deposit is applied towards the cost of repairs on the property.
  • After a tenant moves out, the landlord must provide their tenants with a complete accounting of how their security funds were used and a refund of the remaining balance within 31 days.

Any landlord who doesn’t comply with these new requirements may have to pay their tenant up to two times the amount of their full security deposit along with attorney’s fees and other costs.

  1. If a Landlord requires, as a condition of the tenancy, a Security Deposit that includes last month’s Rent, a Landlord may not collect as an additional part of the Security Deposit more than an amount equal to one-half of one month’s Rent.

  2. If a Landlord does not require last month’s Rent, a Landlord may not collect more than an amount equal to one month’s Rent as a Security Deposit.

  3. If a Landlord conditionally approves an application subject to an Applicant’s demonstration of financial capacity or to offset risk factors identified by the Applicant screening for tenancy as described in Section 30.01.086, the Landlord may require payment of an amount equal to one-half of one month’s Rent as a Security Deposit in addition to the other amounts authorized in this subsection.  The Landlord must allow a Tenant to pay any such additional Security Deposit in installments over up to 3 months in installment amounts reasonably requested by the Tenant.

For more information on security deposits in Portland Oregon, click here.

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