You can now read 10 articles in a month for free on Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

The Boston Globe



Inspections law good for tenants and city

Current law requires Boston landlords to arrange for a city housing inspection each time a rental unit turns over. The owners almost never comply. And why would they? It’s a poorly conceived, unenforceable ordinance that flies in the face of human nature. It’s the rare landlord who picks up a phone and invites city inspectors to come traipsing through the premises in search of violations of the state sanitary code.

The result, however, is an ugly, adversarial system that kicks into gear only when tenants call the Inspectional Services Department to complain about their living conditions. Worse still, city officials say that old people, immigrants, and students are often clueless about the complaint system or afraid to speak up. That could mean that hundreds or even thousands of apartments have fallen below minimum safety standards without the city’s knowledge.

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week