Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Venezuela: Controversial Law Making it Difficult to Evict Tenants Dries Up Rental Market

According to EFE, Venezuela’s rental market has dried up, with owners reluctant to rent properties three years after enactment of a controversial law that makes it extremely difficult to evict tenants.

Thousands of would-be renters are finding it nearly impossible to rent an apartment, Venezuelan Real Estate Association president Aquiles Martini Pietri emphasized.

“Once you rent your property, it becomes practically impossible to get it back,” Martini said.

COMMENT: This is yet another example of how the unsuccessful Socialist experiment of the late Hugo Chávez and incumbent President Nicolás Maduro went terribly wrong as have so many other attempts in history.

The Law for the Regulation and Control of Rental Housing was one of a series of measures enacted by the government in 2011 to protect tenants.

The government enacted the law in response to a study that found that Venezuela had a shortage of 3 million rental units.

The law, among other provisions, gives tenants the right to acquire a dwelling after paying rent for 20 years and expanded government control over landlord-tenant relations.

“Ten years ago, renting accounted for 30% of housing options. Ten years later, the rental market accounts for just 1% of the real estate market,” Urban Property Owners Association (Apiur) president Roberto Orta told EFE.

The National Rental Housing Administration (Sunavi) is currently handling about 50,000 eviction cases and has resolved just two cases, Apiur figures show.