The Assembly takes up a landlord tenant bill today that critics say would harm renters in Wisconsin.
Charlie Breunig, a board member at the Madison-based Tenant Resource Center, says AB 183 would leave tenants on the hook for pest mitigation.”It makes it easier to declare the tenant liable for treating pest infestations especially bed bugs,” says Breunig.
The bill’s author, Saukville Republican Duey Stroebel, says “only if there is proof” that a tenant is responsible would he or she be required to rectify the situation. He cites the example of a tenant who brings in a pest-infested old couch that was found on the curb.
Currently, a third-party must be present when landlords handle property left behind by a former tenant. Stroebel says this mandate requiring a bonded mover, and often law enforcement, is burdensome and leads to higher costs for the property owner which is passed down to other tenants.
Brenig says easing current regulations for property left behind would open-the-door to lawsuits when landlords dispose of something valuable.