Phil Querin Q&A: Landlord Refuses to Accept New Applicants

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Phil Querin



Question: A landlord recently informed the residents of the manufactured home community that they will no longer accept applications of new residents. The landlord has stated that the residents may place the homes on the market for sale, but the park will not accept any applications. Can the landlord do this?





Answer: ORS 90.680 permits tenants to resell their homes to qualified prospective tenants. The refusal to permit or process new applications would appear, on its face, to be a clear violation of the statute.[1] The landlord certainly has the right to screen the new applicants, but not to refuse them outright. Moreover, it is highly likely that some or all of the existing tenants' rental agreements also mirror ORS 90.680, which gives them the contractual right to resell their home, on site, to qualified prospective purchasers. Thus, on two counts, the Oregon Residential Landlord Tenant Law, and the rental agreement, it would appear that the landlord's conduct would expose him/her to potential legal action. It is also possible that even the potential purchasers may have a potential cause of action against the landlord.

[1] The question does not indicate why the landlord has adopted this policy. While there may conceivably be some rationale explanation, I know of no legal justification for the policy in the Oregon Residential Landlord Tenant Act.

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