Report: Addressing Dangerous Rental Properties in Austin (Spring and Summer 2015)

The Entrepreneurship and Community Development Clinic has published the report, “An Analysis of Austin’s Repeat Offender Program and Efforts to Address Dangerous Rental Properties.” The report finds major flaws with the City of Austin’s policies for addressing hazardous building conditions at older rental properties. The report, prepared by students and faculty, expands on the Clinic’s prior work in this area and outlines a number of policy recommendations to improve Austin’s programs for addressing dangerous properties.  The report follows a series of tragedies involving hazardous conditions at local rental properties, which have led to the displacement of dozens of low-income tenants, as well as deaths.

For Randy Teich, the president the North Austin Civic Association, which commissioned the report as a client of the Clinic, the report’s policy recommendations need to be adopted in order to protect tenant lives and improve neighborhood safety. “Many rental properties in Austin continue to lack any kind of maintenance program where any day now another tenant or guest could be killed because of hazardous building conditions,” said Teich.