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La Salle University’s Off Campus & Commuter Communities and Community Building Team Presents:

Landlord Resource Guide Publication Year: 2013-2014


Inside This Issue Letter from Landlord David Hess Off Campus Security Off Campus Behavior Millennials Moving In Tips & Tricks of the Trade Landlord Liability Helpful Resources

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Landlord Resource Guide


Welcome Letter from the Off Campus & Commuter Communities Staff Dear Landlord, Welcome! Whether it’s your first year serving as a landlord for student rented property in our La Salle University community or if you are serving in this role again, welcome! We are incredibly excited to get to know you and work with you to ensure that our communities are safe, positive and thriving throughout the academic year. At La Salle University we make student safety and student success a top priority and we thank you in advance for being a partner in such an important mission. The Off Campus & Commuter Communities Professional Staff is small in number, but great in passion, knowledge, and resources! It is a department headed by three individuals: TiRease Holmes, the Director of Off Campus & Commuter Communities, Dennis Velez, the Off Campus Community Coordinator and Doris Martinez, the Commuter Student Services Coordinator. Together, we work with our commuter and off campus students; serving as resources, guides, and program planners. In addition, we work with our community members to ensure that landlords have the tools and resources to be effective and successful. We work to get to know the people living in the communities; to address their needs and concerns, and to work together to create harmonious communities. This resource guide is intended to help you work with our students, to better understand the University and to give you additional resources and support in your role. We hope it proves helpful. Together we can give students a wonderful off campus living experience and we can create incredible communities throughout the year. We welcome and encourage open dialogue between all landlords and the three professional staff members in the Off Campus & Commuter Communities division. Please visit our website at studentaffairs.lasalle.edu/offcampus and familiarize yourself with the resources available online and how to best contact us.

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Roster Collection Process Every August, the roster collection process begins. The Roster Collection process is an important task for the Off Campus Community Coordinator. The roster collection process ensures that our department, and the University, knows where all of our off-campus students are residing for the academic year. It provides our department and La Salle University with the latest contact information for our students. It’s a project that takes place on a yearly basis.

How you can help: You can help us when we collect roster information next summer: • Notify us of any students living in your property. • Send contact information for all off campus students to offcampusliving@lasalle.edu.

Landlord Resource Guide


Letter of Advice from Local Landlord, David Hess Dear Fellow Landlord, I have found the La Salle University CBT to be an excellent resource for managing my La Salle student rental properties. I am reaching out to you to share this and other resources and to invite you to participate so that we can all work together to improve the stability of our investments. Furthermore, our joint involvement will enhance the off campus housing environment for us and our student tenants. The following is a list of some of the benefits of working together as members of the CBT: • Creating an open line of communication with La Salle departments, such as Off Campus & Commuter Communities, so that when we have a shared problem that involves our tenants, we can seamlessly work together to solve them. • Access to La Salle resources, which members of the CBT work very hard to prepare & make available to the group. • Be advised of important dates that affect our student tenants; as well as events and holidays where house party activity increases. • Build relationships with our non-student neighbors & help our tenants cultivate them. • Learn about resources that assist us in general house keeping issues such as trash. • Become more involved in the community • Learn from each other & the university Ms. Holmes and the other members of the CBT are extremely pragmatic, eager to partner with landlords, and encourage open dialogue between members. Please contact Ms. Holmes or me at phillydave@gmail.com if you would like to share ideas or simply “talk shop”. Very truly yours, David Hess.

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Security Map of La Salle University Services The La Salle University Security and Safety Department is deeply committed to the mission of ensuring the safety of our students, faculty, staff and guests. In addition they seek to deliver the highest level of quality service that is possible. They have created a security map of La Salle Services that demonstrates that areas and services that the Security and Safety Department provides for students, whether they live on or off campus. The security map is pictured below. For a larger version of the map or to find out more about La Salle University Security and Safety please visit: http://www.lasalle.edu/financeadmin/security/safetyservices.htm

Landlord Resource Guide


Security & Safety Protocol for Protected Areas La Salle University Security and Safety Department has established the following resources and guidelines for our off campus students that reside within the parameters of the security map: • The public property immediately adjacent to the University is largely a public domain which is not fully controlled by the University. Despite the public nature of these spaces, La Salle University Security and Safety Department provides patrols and the University has made the decision to contract and partner with Allied Barton Security Services to provide bicycle patrol with the purpose • Of establishing safe walking corridors. The primary responsibility for the safety and patrol of this area resides with the Philadelphia Police Department.

Beyond the areas within the parameters of the security map: • These areas are not controlled by the University. Responsibility for the safety and patrol of these areas resides with the Philadelphia Police Department. • La Salle Security & Safety may provide limited service to these areas.

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Off Campus Student Behavior Policy All La Salle University students, whether they reside on campus in University property, or chose to rent homes in the surrounding neighborhoods, must abide by certain rules, standards and expectations. These general rules and expectations are found in the Student Guide to Rights, Resources, and Responsibilities or SGRRR for short. The most important thing to remember is that students are held responsible for their behavior, if they violate policy or University expectations both on and off campus. As such the SGRRR explicitly states that “As a member of the local community, La Salle University is committed to assisting neighborhood residents with the prevention of disruptive incidents that may arise from student behavior. Most students who live temporarily in the local community make positive contributions but all must understand the behavior expected of them as residents of these communities”. The behaviors expected of off campus students include: • As members of both the University and their neighborhood community, students who live within walking distance of campus should demonstrate respect and concern for all members of both communities. • The University imposes an obligation upon all students to behave as responsible citizens when in local neighborhoods. • Furthermore, the University reserves the right to refer any student involved in disruptive or offensive behavior off-campus to the student disciplinary system for investigation and action. • Such behavior includes: • excessive and/or unreasonable noise • rude & abusive language • large disruptive activities • illegal use, sale, and/or distribution of alcohol or other drugs • related violations of local community standards Students living off campus must also remember that the University will exercise discretion with disciplinary action against students for off-campus violations. Mediation efforts to resolve disputes with neighbors and/or landlords will precede formal University action. However, students should realize that disciplinary investigation and charges will be initiated when the University’s interest, reputation, and/or capacity to function as an academic community is distinctly involved.

Landlord Resource Guide


You’re also responsible for holding tenants accountable. What policies do you have in your contract regarding student behavior? What are the repercussions for violations? Feel free to include University policies as well as your own provisions. Landlords should familiarize themselves with the resources they have at their disposal to address any serious behavioral infractions: contacting La Salle University Safety & Security; and the Police. SGRR online: http://www.lasalle.edu/students/dean/divpub/manuals/sgrrr/

Millenials Moving In! You’ve decided to rent to young college students attending La Salle University. What do you know about them? The more you understand the people you rent to, the easier it will be to form meaningful and positive relationships with them. Luckily for you, there has been plenty of research conducted about millennials. Millennials is a term that describes individuals born in the 1980s to the present. They are often defined by a new set of values and characteristics: • They are collaborative and enjoy working on a team. Establish positive relationships with them and engage them in community efforts. • They respect their elders. A majority say that the older generation is superior to the younger generation when it comes to moral values and work ethic. • They embrace diversity. • Millennials are more racially tolerant than older generations and embrace things such as interracial dating and alternate living arrangements.  • They cast a wary eye on human nature. Two-thirds say “you can’t be too careful” when dealing with people. Help them trust you by introducing yourself & getting to know them. • They embrace multiple modes of self-expression. Three-quarters have created a profile on a social networking site. Try email with them to communicate. • They are stressed out; the biggest causes of stress being money, work and the cost of housing. Get to know your students and identify when they seem especially down or stressed.

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Tips & Tricks of the Trade Being an effective landlord means that you make a true commitment to the job. The properties that our students are renting are yours, and as such, you should be fully invested in the property. Below you will find some tips to help make you an effective and efficient landlord: • It is your job to educate tenants when they first move in—especially if they are renting for the first time. • Let them know what your expectations are, what their responsibilities are, and how they best can work with you. • It is always useful to exchange contact information with them (phone number, email, etc). • Make sure you are making frequent and consistent visits to your property. • Being a landlord is a JOB; you should be fully invested in the upkeep and maintenance of your property. Your tenants should kn ow who you are, and should feel comfortable communicating with you. • Make sure you stay on top of any preexisting arrangements—grass cutting, etc. • Also, please stay on top of all repairs. Nothing makes a tenant unhappier than when repairs aren’t taken care of in a timely manner.

• • • •

Provide secure premises. Don't let your tenants and property be easy marks for a criminal. Assess your property's security and take reasonable steps to protect it. Provide notice before entering. Learn about your tenants’ rights to privacy and make sure you honor it by giving your tenants’ at least 24 hours’ notice before entering the property. Disclose environmental hazards. If there's a hazard such as lead or mold on the property, tell your tenants. Familiarize yourself with the laws. Being an effective landlord means knowing the laws governing that occupation . Introduce yourself to the neighbors & exchange numbers with neighbors and encourage your tenants to do so. Designate individual contact with at least 1 student in the property. Try to resolve disputes with your tenants without lawyers and lawsuits. If that doesn’t work, seek a third party mediator . Be organized. We all let things slip our minds now and then, but when it comes to important things, the consequences can be severe. Avoid becoming an absentee landlord

Landlord Resource Guide


Tips for Renting to Students & How to Avoid Becoming an Absentee Landlord This next section will provide you with some tips on renting to students in particular: • Make sure the student can cover the rent. (Or get a cosigner.) Student or not, any tenant must be able to cover the cost of rent of your unit. • Consider allowing yearlong students to sublet. • Take the time to show your tenants how to use the appliances correctly – it’s likely to be the first time they have lived away from home. • Ensure your property is being looked after. • Leaving your tenant with a welcome pack with emergency contact will save you time and worry. • Don’t underestimate the length of university holidays. Remind incoming tenants of their obligations if they are likely to be away for extended periods of time during their tenancy (ex. Trash, security, etc). An absentee landlord is a landlord that is not a visible presence at their property and who is not fully invested in their role. Often, the students do not know who this person is or how to best contact them to address any concerns. Being an absentee landlord can result in: • The inability to regularly check properties. Absentee landlords do not frequently visit their properties & have no idea what condition it’s in. • Homes that are more likely to be reported and cited for violations are homes managed by absentee landlords. • More police visits. Homes owned by absentee landlords are also more likely to turn into nuisance houses where frequent, loud parties or drug dealing happen on a regular basis.

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Landlord Liability: What You Need to Know to Avoid Being Responsible As a landlord you are responsible for upholding the rights of tenants. You are expected to familiarize yourself with the laws in Pennsylvania that have been established to protect tenants and landlords alike. This section will provide selected examples of when landlords can be held responsible, as well as information about useful resources to utilize as you embark on this journey.

Landlord Liability for Criminal Activity • • •

Under Pennsylvania law, a landlord who fails to provide reasonable security measures may be held liable for criminal activity on their premises. This rule of law is applied in cases where tenants, guests and other visitors to the property, such as mail delivery employees or utility company employees are injured as a result of criminal activity on the premises. Most cases of criminal activity at a house are not isolated. Criminal activity tends to occur in waves. Oftentimes, a landlord had knowledge of criminal activity or an increased risk of criminal activity on the premises, yet failed to take reasonable precautions. Such failure to act can lead to liability. Common defects which, if present, may lead to liability for criminal access include: • Broken doors or locks • Unsecure windows • Inadequate lights

Source: http://www.laffeybuccikent.com/pennsylvania-landlord-liability-for-injury-resulting-from-criminal-activity/

Landlord Resource Guide


Warranty of Habitability When people offer an apartment or house for rent, they guarantee that it is safe and sanitary. They also guarantee that they will make the necessary repairs to keep it safe and sanitary during the lease term. This is called the warranty of habitability. The following items are just a few examples of things that landlords generally must make available for tenants: • Drinkable water • Heat • Working sewer system • Working smoke detector Source: http://www.splas.org/housing-implied-warr.html

If the tenant raises concerns about problems that need to be repaired or replaced, the landlord often must make provisions to address the problems in a timely manner. If not, tenants have the right to take the following actions: • Move without any further duty to pay rent. • Withhold rent and keep it until the problem is fixed. • Make the repair and deduct the cost from the rent. • Recover past rent paid by suing for damages in District Justice Court. • In some cases, a tenant can seek a court order requiring the landlord to do certain things to make the residence safe and sanitary. Source: http://www.splas.org/housing-implied-warr.html

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Holidays and Important University Dates Month October

Thursday, October 31st: Halloween

Sunday, November 3rd: Trash Bash Neighborhood Clean Up Monday, November 11th: Veterans’ Day Saturday, November 16th: Homecoming (tentative) Sunday, November 17th: Trash Bash Neighborhood Clean Up Thursday, November 28th: Thanksgiving No classes from Wednesday, November 27th-December 2nd

• • • • •

• • • •

November

December

Christmas Holiday begins Friday, December 13th. Students return on January 13th Wednesday, December 25th: Christmas Day University closed from December 20th to January 2nd Tuesday, December 31st: New Year’s Eve

Changes in Trash Pick Up/High Party Time •

Tendency for Parties (Speak with your tenants about expectations)

Landlords and tenants are encouraged to participate Trash pick-up: Thursday, November 14th Tendency for parties (Speak with your tenants about expectations) Landlords and tenants are encouraged to participate No change

• • • • •

No change, but students may go home for the holidays. They will need a reminder to make arrangements to have their trash put out for trash day.

Arrangements should be made to have trash put out during holiday break Trash pick-up: Thursday, December 26th No change

• • •

January

Wednesday, January 1st: New Years’ • Day

Monday, January 20th: Martin Luther King Day

Tendency for Parties (Speak with your tenants about expectations) Trash pick-up: Thursday, January 2nd. Arrangements should be made to have trash put out during holiday Trash pick-up: Thursday, January 23rd

Landlord Resource Guide


Month February

Trash pick-up: Thursday, February 20th

University closed (March 3-7)

Monday, March 17th: St. Patrick’s Day Tuesday,, March 18th : Trash Bash Neighborhood Clean Up

Arrangements should be made to have trash put out during break Tendency for parties (Speak with your tenants about expectations) Landlords and tenants are encouraged to participate

Monday, February 17th: Presidents Day

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Changes in Trash Pick Up/High Party Time

March

April

• • •

Friday, April 18th: Good Friday University closed from April 18-21 Greek Week/Spring Fling 3/31-4/6

• • •

Sunday, November 17th: Trash Bash Neighborhood Clean Up

Monday, May 5th: Cinco De Mayo

Students leave on May 9th

Monday, May 26th: Memorial Day

May

No Change No change Tendency for parties (Speak with your tenants about expectations) Landlords and tenants are encouraged to participate Tendency for parties (Speak with your tenants about expectations) Students will be gone for the remainder of the spring semester Trash pick-up: Thursday, May 29th

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This resource is brought to you by:

1900 W. Olney Avenue Philadelphia, PA 19141 Email: offcampusliving@lasalle.edu Website: studentaffairs.lasalle.edu/offcampus

Helpful Resources La Salle University Safety & Security Office: For Emergencies Call: 215.951.2111 For Non- Emergencies Call: 215.951.1300

Brother Augustine Center For Commuter & Off Campus Students: Check out the website for additional resources & helpful information. You can also post property listing here: Studentaffairs.lasalle.edu/offcampus

Landlord Resource Guide


Off Campus & Commuter Communities Professional Staff:

TiRease Holmes, Director of Off Campus & Commuter Communities 215.951.1916

Doris Martinez, Commuter Student Services Coordinator 215.951.5057

Dennis Velez, Off Campus Community Coordinator 215.951.1532

The Landlord Resource Guide is a working document. The information provided in this guide are just some tips and suggestions. Landlords have differing years of experience. For you, this might not be your first stint as a landlord, so you might have acquired useful tips and resources. We are always looking to help educate new landlords, so please send any helpful tips to Dennis Velez, our Off Campus Community Coordinator. He can be reached at velez@lasalle.edu or via phone at (215) 951-1532. Help us keep in contact with you. Provide us with your name, email, phone number and mailing address. Do your part and be a great landlord. It’s your business. Be invested.

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