You Look Like Satan

I came across a really interesting article in the Seattle PI from the 11th of January about the massive rental hikes that are expected and being handed out in the Belltown area (and all over the rest of the Seattle Metro area as well).  More interesting than the article were the comments that followed.  There is a TOTAL disconnect!  I can tell you that, yes, unless you get VERY lucky, it's going to be a rental increase this year when you renew.  However, the cited $400 leaves not only a bad taste in a renter's mouth, but ...well you look like Satan.

Yes.  You are now the Rental Prince of Darkness.  Because you tried to make a profit.

Look, we're all here to run a business.  We're all here to make money and we're here to increase the value of property.  But, and I prepare for the onslaught of people's hateful comments as I type this, YOU DON'T HAVE TO RECOUP YOUR LOSSES OVERNIGHT.  Housing is a long term thing, people.  An increase of 8% works.  An increase of 20% in the current climate...not so much.  You might as well break out your horns and pitchfork when you deliver the notices.

The last two years weren't happy times for ANYONE.  Not just for the owners and operators of the buildings, but for the renters as well.  Pushing and pulling rents is like trying to toss a softball in to those bushel baskets at the county fair: it's always a game of skill and luck.  You've got to find a happy middle ground.  And I'm going to ask you right now - How much common sense does it take to realize that $400 in a rental increase is going to piss off your renters, who, might I remind you, rented from you when the market was tough...when you were having problems finding residents...or watching residents break leases every other week...when your books weren't balancing quite so well and your reports were written mostly in the red...

How quickly we forget.

I know you want to recoup your losses, but don't kill your good name in the process.  Because... You look like Satan.

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