Minneapolis landlords who have been hesitant to rent to Section 8 voucher holders may soon have a financial incentive to change their tune.
City officials are looking at creating a pool of money, in collaboration with the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority (MPHA), to help pay damage claims in units rented by voucher holders.
"The idea really is to create an incentive for landlords to want to participate," Minneapolis Housing Director Andrea Brennan said at a meeting Wednesday with the MPHA board.
Though there's no proof that voucher holders do more damage to rental units than non-voucher holders, Brennan said, some landlords cite it as a reason for not participating in the Section 8 program.
The pool would become available when a claim exceeds the tenant's security deposit, and cover repairs up to $2,500.
There is already $50,000 in the city's budget for this purpose, said City Council Vice President Elizabeth Glidden.
Officials are exploring other possible uses for the pool, if additional funding can be identified. One possibility is offering a one-time payment to landlords renting to a voucher holder for the first time.
The landlord incentives are intended to complement a proposed ordinance, which Glidden co-authored with Council Member Abdi Warsame, that would prevent Minneapolis landlords from discriminating against voucher holders. It is expected to come up for a public hearing next month.