Many DC residents do not know that the renter population is significant in DC. Charles Davis, program analyst, Office of the Tenant Advocate, indicates that as of a 2011 American Community survey by the U.S. Census, renters comprised almost 60% of DC’s total population.
Ward 3 has a large number of rental properties along both Wisconsin and Connecticut Avenues and ranks second in the number of rent-controlled properties in the city. (Source: A Rent Control Report for the District of Columbia (PDF download), June 2011, by Neighborhood Info DC. See page 13 for the rankings of all Wards)
In Forest Hills, we have 18 rental apartment buildings, including 15 rent-controlled buildings (marked with *):
• Archstone Albemarle*
• Archstone Connecticut Heights*
• Archstone Consulate
• Archstone Van Ness*
• Archstone Park Connecticut
• Clarence House*
• Connecticut House*
• Ellicott House*
• Sedgwick Gardens*
• Tilden Hall*
• Yuma Gardens*
• 3801 Connecticut*
• 4107 Connecticut*
• 4801 Connecticut*
“Rent-controlled” means that rent increases are governed by a law that limits the amount and frequency of a rent increase.
Buildings that are federally- or District-subsidized, or buildings built after 1975 are not covered under rent-control.
Renters are an important voting bloc, and at this year’s Fifth Annual Tenant Summit on Saturday, September 22, 2012 held at the Kellogg Conference Center, at Galludet University, the politicians showed up:
• The Honorable Eleanor Holmes Norton, DC Delegrate to the U.S. House of Representatives
• The Honorable Vincent C. Gray, Mayor of the District of Columbia
• The Honorable Michael Brown, Councilmember, At-Large
• The Honorable Mary Cheh, Councilmember Ward 3
• The Honorable Yvette Alexander, Councilmember, Ward 7
Other attendees from Ward 3 represented tenant leaders from 4000 Massachusetts Avenue Tenant Association, Idaho Terrace, Van Ness South and Brandywine Tenants. Total Summit registration was 505, but actual attendance was much lower.
The focus this year was a morning plenary session featuring District agencies that provide services relevant to tenants, including the DC Office of the People’s Council, DC Department of Housing and Community Development and the DC Department of Community Affairs.
The afternoon break-out sessions featured panels and workshops on a wide range of topics, including how to win a tenant petition and everything you should know before starting a tenancy, led by attorneys, tenant association officers and policy leaders.
The Office of Tenant Advocate (www.ota.dc.gov) highlighted their live online Q&A, a monthly chat session to answer questions from renters. They are usually held on the last Tuesday of every month. The next session is being held on Tuesday, October 30th from 1-2 p.m. If you have an issue, check in.
Need an immediate answer and can’t wait until the chat? You can use the “Ask the Director” feature on the OTA website.