The Associated Students Legal Resource Center has come up with a new and possibly more effective way for people at UCSB to bitch about their landlords.
Students, staff and faculty will be able to rate their landlords beginning Jan. 21 on the ASLRC’s Online Landlord/Management Company Evaluation system. When the survey is completed, a statistical analysis of the results will be done and released to the public.
Participants will enter their perm number, P.I.N., and U-Mail address on the secure web page, gaining access to a site on which they can grade their landlord and management company. The system is designed to retain U-Mail addresses in a database, preventing duplicate entries. No personal information will be shared, and the site is under strict UCSB and A.S. regulations.
Participants will fill out a survey consisting of 10 to 15 questions about the relationship between themselves and their landlords based on current law relating to tenant/landlord affairs. Tenants will also be able to give their opinion of how well their landlord responds to complaints and problems.
When results are compiled, students, staff and faculty will be able to log on to the website and find out which landlords are more popular among tenants than others, allowing them to better decide from whom they should lease.
“The grade of I.V.’s landlords and management companies will allow students to make an informed and educated decision when selecting where to rent for next school year,” ASLRC Committee Member-at-Large and senior political science major Jeff Marek said. “It is our hope that good landlords and management companies will be praised and bad landlords and management companies will be held more accountable.”
ASLRC committee members hope the program will encourage landlords and management companies, who will also receive the survey results, to improve their service in the UCSB area. As a result of the survey, some landlords may experience a rise or decrease in tenants for the upcoming year, depending on their rating, ASLRC Chair Laura Vik said.
“We will provide each landlord with the results so that they can be made aware of the opinion UCSB students hold of them, and what they do [in response] is up to them,” Vik said. “This survey is the first step to better the relationship between landlords and tenants in I.V.”
The ASLRC has offered a previous version of the landlord/management company evaluation since fall 2001. Last year, the ASLRC committee only met a handful of times and the website was put together by the ASLRC director. The survey was not well-publicized and few students participated, Marek said.
This year’s ASLRC committee, which now meets weekly, decided to redevelop the system in summer 2002 to make it easier to use and has planned to publicize it widely.
The project is funded by an ASLRC lock-in fee and will cost under $1,000 to operate. Because the project is funded by a UCSB lock-in fee, SBCC students and permanent residents may not participate; however, Marek said the survey may be expanded in the future to include them.
“Being inclusive to all I.V.’s residents would yield a more comprehensive and accurate evaluation of Isla Vista’s property owners and property managers,” he said.
Participants can log on to www.myivlandlord.com next week. For more information on the services the ASLRC provides, students may go to www.as.ucsb.edu/aslrc.