Overland Park City Council to discuss rental inspection program

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OVERLAND PARK, Kan. -- If you own rental property in Overland Park, you might soon have to pay up for a new licensing and inspection program that the city council will discuss and possibly vote on Monday night

City officials say  they’ve received a lot of complaints over the years of people letting their rental properties fall into disrepair. So they decided to create a license and inspection program to help clean up the neighborhoods.

There are a total of 30,000 rental properties in Overland Park, which includes homes, townhomes, duplexes and apartment buildings.

The program is a two-year program. So every year, inspectors will go to half the rental properties and take a look at the outside of the structure.

They want to make sure the grass is not overgrown, that the siding and paint are not peeling off, that the deck is not falling apart. If there are problems, the rental property owner will be asked to fix them or face a fine.

"Really the emphasis has been on the exterior," Overland Park community services manager John Rod said. "From the standpoint of what is the biggest impact on the neighborhood and that's why they're emphasizing that, it's really the property next to you and how it appears."

The new program will cost more than $300,000 to run, so rental property owners will have to pay a $60 licensing fee for every property they own.

"Education is a component out of all this," Rod added. "So it will be known as to exactly what we are looking for so property owners will have plenty of time to look at that thoroughly and understand and if they have questions they can contact us."

Some don’t think this program is necessary and say it’s not fair rental property owners are being targeted. But city officials say this is where they get the most complaints and will make sure property owners know what to fix to avoid being fined.

The city council held a public hearing on this issue a couple weeks ago and will take action Monday night.