After answering a slew of questions on Prince of Petworth in March, it was abundantly clear that DCRA had not done a very good job of providing information about the unique and often confusing laws and regulations about basement apartments in the District.
So on a Friday evening a week later, we created this blog to try to answer the easy, the obscure, debunk myths and admit to our own issues. We created a new document and new procedures to help make the process easier and answered over 600 questions from more than 50,000 visitors in just 9 months.
While the laws and regulations are in place to ensure these apartments are safe for tenants and property owners, they can be cumbersome. We are doing everything we can, within the current codes, to make the process easier or, at the very least, understandable. DCRA is charged with issuing licenses and doing inspections to ensure the city’s basement apartments are safe for tenants. And in many circumstances, this is an easy responsibility and for some there are some challenges.
As this blog’s creator and moderator, it has been a pleasure getting answers to your questions and meeting many of you “in real life” at our office or over the phone. We have had tons of new license applications approved this year that are a direct result of the conversations we’ve had.
I am moving on to other opportunities, but the work on improving these processes and the conversations will continue. During the transition to new moderators, please be patient as they get onto the swing of things.
Thank you all again for making this a great resource for property owners. It has been a pleasure speaking with all of you.
- Mike Rupert