RENT Magazine Q1 '22

RENTAL OWNERS ARE RUNNING TOWARDS RUBS With both utility rates and rental restrictions on the rise, there’s never been a better time to increase tenant accountability and create a community around conservation with a Ratio Utility Billing System (RUBS). NEW RESTRICTIONS COMING NATIONWIDE WHAT IS RUBS?

Prior to the pandemic there was already a trend towards increasing tenant protections. In 2019, Oregon, California, and New Jersey all passed statewide rent control laws. In other states, similar ordinances were put on hold as legislators worked on emergency coronavirus measures. As legislative agendas get back to normal in 2022, Illinois, New Jersey, Minnesota, Virginia, Massachusetts, and Maryland are all among the states likely to add more permanent rent control restrictions. Many of these imminent measures will make unilateral lease changes more difficult. In many rent-controlled jurisdictions, such changes and additions can only occur during unit turnover. Time may be running out to simply and easily add a ratio utility billing program to your properties.

RUBS uses factors like the number of occupants, the square footage of the unit, or a customizable combination of factors to fairly and legally make tenants accountable for their utility usage. Owners can choose to pass on 100 percent or less of water, power and waste management costs, depending on the particulars of the building and market. With RUBS, tenants simply receive an invoice every month which they can pay online, and the property owner receives a direct deposit or check for all the money collected. RUBS incentivizes tenants to use less of our valuable natural resources every day since they become financially responsible for how much they use. That incentive is more important than ever given that utility rates are expected to increase their upwards climb in 2022.

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