Attention Landlords – A New Seattle Ordinance May Apply to Your Rental Property

By /

If you own a residential rental property in Seattle, then you’ll want to pay attention to the new Rental Registration and Inspection Ordinance (RRIO).  RRIO requires landlords to register all rental housing units located in Seattle with the City of Seattle.   The purpose of RRIO is to help ensure that all rental housing in Seattle is safe and meets basic housing maintenance requirements. 

Registration is required for all residential rental properties, from single family houses to large apartment complexes.  Exceptions to the registration requirement include commercial lodging, state-licensed facilities such as adult family homes, and housing owned by government groups or housing authorities. 

Landlords must register their property according to the following schedule: 

All properties with 10 or more rental housing units                       By September 30, 2014 

All properties with 5 to 9 rental housing units                              By March 31, 2015 

All properties with 1 to 4 rental housing units                              Due date determined by zip code 

Registration can be done online, in-person, or by mail, and must be renewed every 5 years.  The registration fee is $175 for the first unit and $2 for each additional unit.  Penalty fees apply to late registration or failure to register. 

The ordinance requires all registered rental properties to be inspected at least once every 10 years, starting in 2015.  Property owners may choose to use a private qualified rental housing inspector or hire a City inspector.  Once a rental property has passed inspection, the inspector will issue a signed Certificate of Compliance to the property owner who is then responsible for submitting the certificate to the RRIO program.

For more information about RRIO and how to register your rental unit, please contact an attorney in the Real Estate Group

About the Authors


Learn More