The Public Comment Period is Now Closed

The Department of Safety and Inspections is now reviewing comments and will publish the final rules, along with text addressing substantive concerns on the City’s website by Friday, December 30, 2022.  On January 2, 2023, the updated intake form will be available on the website for landlords to complete to formally request an exception to the limit on rent established by the ordinance.  

Learn more about the ongoing work to implement the revised ordinance.

Overview

About Rulemaking and Implementation

On November 2, 2021, Saint Paul voters approved a Rent Stabilization Ordinance for the City of Saint Paul. The Ordinance limits residential rent increases to no more than 3% in a 12-month period. Ordinance also directs the City to create a process for landlords to request an exception to the 3% limit based on the right to a reasonable return on investment.  

After the Rent Stabilization Ordinance became law, the Department of Safety and Inspections (DSI) was tasked with working toward a May 1, 2022, implementation date.  Subsequently, the City Council adopted amendments to the ordinance which go into effect January 1, 2023.  To that end, DSI is proposing rules to clarify and implement Saint Paul’s Rent Stabilization Ordinance. Rules clarify how a law or policy is to be carried out or enforced and have the force and effect of law.  

This webpage provides an array of information including proposed rent stabilization along with proposed processes and definitions by which landlords would request an exception to the 3% limit.   

Proposed Rules

About the Rulemaking Process

DSI is proposing rules that clarify how landlord requests for exceptions to the limitation on rent increases will be processed. The department has also proposed rules that identify the information to be considered when determining whether a landlord has demonstrated that an exception is needed to achieve a reasonable return on investment. While Section 193A.06 of Ordinance lays out nine factors that DSI must consider when determining whether a landlord’s request should be granted, it does not specify a means of analyzing those factors. DSI’s proposed rules create a means to analyze landlord requests using the nine factors required by the Ordinance. 

With the amendments made by City Council, additional rules include just cause vacancy, utility costs, the 20-year new construction exception, and low-income housing provider income. 

For the definitions of terms below, see the ordinance language.  The rules below are intended to clarify the ordinance language, not create new or different requirements.  Each section of the ordinance has its own rules however, many relate to each other.  

Review a PDF of the Proposed Rules for 2023

Proposed Process for Requesting Exception to 3% Rent Cap (effective starting January 2023)

Please note that exceptions for new construction or low-income housing are handled separately. 

To learn more about the current rules and processes in effect through the rest of 2022, visit the Rent Stabilization Rules and Processes (2022) page.

Download an accessible PDF version of the process for requesting an exception.

Complete initial financial worksheet and other forms

Documentation includes:

Submit "Rent Increase Exception Request" form

The form will be available online and the rules describe what needs to be submitted, including:

  • Applicant information
  • Property information
  • Justification selection
  • Increase amount proposed
  • Portion of building impacted
  • Rent roll for notification - unit numbers (use the format "Resident of Unit #" rather than include names)

Self-Certification Administrative Process

Self-certification is available for rent increases between 3% and Consumer Price Index (CPI) +1.95% (evaluated annually).

Staff Determination

Landlords will receive confirmation of the application for a rent increase exception, including:

  • Information for submitting supporting documentation
  • Next steps for making a determination
  • Staff contact information

Residents will be notified of a pending application.

Work Towards Determination

This step includes:

  • Dialogue with City staff
  • Submitting additional details or missing information
  • Please note: an application is abandoned if no action after 60 days

Conclusion

Staff Determination

The staff determination process concludes with:

  • Determination letter provided to applicant and tenants (notification comes from the Department of Safety and Inspections)
  • Option for appeal within 45 days of determination

Self-Certification

After submitting the self-certification, landlords will receive confirmation of:

  • Confirmation of receipt of self-certification
  • Tenant notification (from the Department of Safety and Inspections)
  • Option for appeal within 45 days of determination
  • Audit information

Appeal to Hearing Officer

This is optional for landlords or tenants not satisfied with staff determination. 

Last Edited: December 2, 2022