Tenants would be protected from big price hikes

New Hampshire cities and towns would be allowed to set their own rent controls on large developments — including limitations on how quickly rents could rise — under a bill proposed in the House this year.

House Bill 95 would allow municipalities to cap the amount that certain landlords can increase rents and allow the municipalities to choose the limit they want.

The bill would also allow cities and towns to require a certain amount of time to pass before landlords could increase a tenant’s rent. Currently, the state law requires at least 30 days notice; the proposed bill would allow cities to increase that.

Protesters stand in solidarity against rent hikes in downtown Newmarket Saturday, Sept.  10, 2022.

Sponsored by Rep. Ellen Read, a Newmarket Democrat, the bill would allow towns to introduce such controls only on what are known as “restricted” properties. They could not pass controls on “non-restricted properties,” defined in state law as single-family homes whose owner does not own more than three homes; rental properties in buildings with fewer than five units; or single-family homes acquired by banks through foreclosures.

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