New rental requirements in Hoisington

HOISINGTON, Kansas – A new set of rules in the small town of Hoisington now means that landlords have to make sure their properties are livable, or they can’t rent them out.

So far feedback is mixed

“What it does is it puts the houses on a even playing field where if you want to rent a house in town, the houses are nice they’re fixed up and they’re well taken care of,” said Don Doerschlag, Hoisington’s Code Enforcement Officer.

The rental licensing program is meant to make things livable for renters, so things as simple as having windows that open and having screens on them is a requirement.

The city will inspect the property and either give the landlord a license to rent or give them more time to get the rentals up to the new standards.

“I think that it’s a good idea, there’s quite a few houses here in Hoisington that are dilapidated and they need someone to control it to bring it up to a good standard,” said Chris Wikoff of Wikoff Property Management.

Some owners aren’t happy about the upfront costs that come along with the new rules.

“A lot of the property owners that we work with, they have ten, twelve rentals, and with that many rentals, it’s a lot to replace in a short amount of time,” said Wikoff.

The city says while the rules protect renters, they’re also set up to help landlords.

“There’s also some protections built in for the landlords of the property, if someone is renting a house from them and demolish the house, surely the city can step in and help the landlord as well as the tenant,” said Doerschlag.

The Hoisington City Council will have a work session on the Rental Licensing Program in August.

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