The City of Allentown website newly contains a resource page of vital information for residential tenants. https://www.allentownpa.gov/Community-and-Economic-Development/Housing-Federal-Grants/Tenant-Resources
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the havoc it has played on both tenants and landlords, the city Department of Community & Economic Development, in collaboration with Allentown Human Relations Commission commissioners, has created the page to inform renters of their rights as paying tenants.
“We want to make sure every citizen in Allentown has a safe and habitable home and knows where to turn when conditions warrant,” said Mayor Ray O’Connell.
“Making resources available to educate and inform our tenants and landlords is part of Principle 1 of Vision 2030,” said DCED Director Leonard Lightner.
Among other things, a safe and habitable home includes working smoke alarms and hot water, heat in the winter, adequate waste disposal and sewage, plumbing maintained in sanitary working condition free from defects and leaks, safe and operable electricity, and functioning locking windows and doors.
Allentown Vision 2030, the city’s comprehensive and economic development plan, says “Homeowners and landlords both have responsibilities and opportunities to create well-built homes, whether new or renovated, that are more resilient, attractive and equitable. The city and its partners can help ensure that all residents live in quality housing with code enforcement, education and assistance programs.”
Tenants are urged to contact their landlord to report any problems and seek repairs. If the landlord does not take action to make repairs in a timely manner, tenants should call the city’s Bureau of Building Standards & Safety at 610-437-7694 to file a complaint or schedule an inspection.
“The city can’t do this alone, and this resource page demonstrates how many organizations are committed to safe and habitable housing,” Lightner added.
The page also contains links to information on the Fair Housing Act and current community housing programs and projects and more.
Currently, the page can be translated to Spanish, and the city is working on translating to other languages.