Orange County

Orange County working on ordinance meant to protect tenants from bad landlords

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — Orange County commissioners are moving forward with an ordinance meant to protect tenants from bad landlord practices.

Commissioners spent part of Tuesday working on the details of a new tenant bill of rights, which could take effect as soon as March. It comes after months of conversations about skyrocketing rents and record-breaking increases in evictions.


The tenant bill of rights provides an overview of renter rights that are already law and it adds three new requirements for landlords.

If the ordinance passes, landlords would need to provide a copy of the bill of rights to tenants before they move in. They’d need to list all rental fees up front and would no longer be able to discriminate against prospective renters based on income types like Section 8.

Read: ‘I thought I was going to lose everything’: The stories behind Central Florida’s eviction crisis

Some voiced concerns these provisions are too burdensome, but others say they don’t go far enough to bring public accountability to bad landlords.

“I just think that putting that on landlords is going to add one more thing to do, which I can already see big apartment buildings passing that onto tenants,” said Steve Simson, owner/broker with Central Florida Property Management.

Read: Hundreds of Orange County families being evicted after Hurricane Ian damages complex

Pastor Charles T. Meyers, a tenant advocate, said the bill of rights would allow people to see if their landlord has any code violations to know “am I renting from a place that is viable or am I renting from a slumlord?”

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Sarah Wilson

Sarah Wilson,

Sarah Wilson joined WFTV Channel 9 in 2018 as a digital producer after working as an award-winning newspaper reporter for nearly a decade in various communities across Central Florida.