Rental ethics called for

Addressing the current rental shortage for residents at a Cayman Islands Recovery Operation leadership meeting, Chief Secretary George McCarthy called on landlords to be ethical in dealing with tenants and to be sensitive when instituting rent increases.

He said rent gouging could threaten Cayman’s ability to attract expatriate workers necessary in fields such as education and health as well as victimize many Caymanians who reside in rental accommodations.

Mr. Wil Pineau, chief executive officer of the Chamber of Commerce, said the state of the rental market calls for specific legislation that will protect tenants as well as landlords, states a GIS press release.

‘The Chamber recommends the establishment of a task force to look at drafting specific legislation that would regulate future landlord-tenant relationships. We have heard stories of unreasonable landlords, but have also heard of people refusing to pay rent even though the properties they occupy were repaired. In order to address such problems we need proper legislation that clearly define the rights of both groups.’

Mr. Pineau said the only thing the Chamber could do was to issue an advisory to landlords asking them not to evict tenants without good reason.

He also urged government to consider a way to standardize strata agreements to help recovery in future: ‘Some properties had no contingency funds or disaster plans which means it will take so much longer to get back on their feet.’

If you value our service, if you have turned to us in the past few days or weeks for verified, factual updates, if you have watched our live streaming of press conferences or sent an article to a friend... please consider a donation. Quality local journalism was at risk before the coronavirus crisis. It is now deeply threatened. Even a small amount can go a long way to sustaining our mission of informing the public. We need our readers’ financial support now more than ever.