By Bob Katzen

The House 23-136, rejected an amendment that would repeal the 1994 law that prohibits rent control from being implemented by local cities and towns. Rent control places limits on the rent that a landlord may charge. The Bay State outlawed rent control on a 1994 voter-approved ballot question that was approved 51 percent to 49 percent. At that time, only Boston, Cambridge and Brookline had implemented rent control.

The amendment sponsor Rep. Mike Connolly (D-Cambridge) said that allowing rent control would make it possible for cities and towns to bring everyone to the table, homeowners, and landlords alike, to craft tenant protections, including rent control, that make sense and are fair on the local level. “While the governor’s Housing Choice proposal will help ensure that all of our communities do their part to support the production of new, multifamily housing, this amendment is important because it would provide municipalities with flexible options to help stop displacement as new housing comes online,” said Connolly.

Amendment opponents said rent control leads to some landlords losing money on rentals which results in landlords no longer wanting to rent out their apartments at the new lower prices. They noted that this, in turn, decreases the supply of rental housing on the market. They said that since rent control ended in 1994, the House has continuously worked to make rents more affordable by supporting housing production and affordable housing initiatives.

In the meantime, the Legislature’s Housing Committee has endorsed a separate bill (H 3924), filed by Rep. Connolly that would allow rent control in Massachusetts.



  1. RENT CONTROL can never work. They tried it in Cambridge and how we got all these crazy liberals because our rents were always lower than most surrounding cities and we had the best access to the MBTA which other towns desperately lack– Arlington, Medford and Everett being the worst. If you have never experienced being a small landlord — (greedy landlord is the problem, not the small landlord, there is a distinction, learn it!!) You might want to research how many local lawyers, one a former alderman, who has bought up many condos and others have also bought up most neighborhood homes which they also run a practice to be that greedy landlord you describe and they are also close to the mayor! Go there to complain about high rents. The facts are that the small landlords are paying over $14k annually in taxes and water/sewer to run 2-3 family homes which they reside. So tenants are also getting an in home service when things break in their apartment. The landlord lives there and not in one of their many condos in FLORIDA, NH, ARUBA and CAYMAN ISLANDS. Plus some of the shady realtors are also benefiting by the city rigged RE market. Get educated on this topic before you start blaming the wrong people. If they were to implement rent control, the city would go bust. No more repairs, landlords will sell to worse landlords and get out of Dodge. There are other towns to move to where you can access transportation. Consider a different town. Many have and are not buying into this rigged shitshow.

  2. I’d rather see a limitation on property ownership and a REQUIREMENT that renters get first chance (and subsidized loans) to purchase the units that they are living in.
    The Somerville Community Corporation is A JOKE !!!!
    It is apparently, a scam by the Curtatone family.
    WHY can’t they use their 501c 3 status to CONVERT multi-family rentals into renter owned “condo” buildings – sold to those ALREADY LIVING THERE???

    Snapping up Somerville housing and then RENTING IT TO THOSE LIVING THERE = slum lord. How is SCC and The CURTATONE crime family ANY DIFFERENT than TRUMP, KUSHNER, or HANNITY?
    The LAST market “crash” occurred because some people had enough money to simply outbid ANYONE ELSE to snap up “investment” housing.
    But won’t our country be stronger and more stable – if we all (who wish to) own, instead of rent?

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