You Think Your Landlord is Tough...- By: Jamie Mathwig
If you own a condo, rent your home, or lease office space, the last thing you want to hear is that your rent or HOA fees are going up. Well you can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that the increase will be miniscule compared to what a certain sector of property owners are facing. Imagine owning a tiny cabin in the woods that was built 50 years ago by your grandfather. You spent your summers there as a child, and now your children are enjoying the peaceful setting, but now the vacation is over for the average folks that have enjoyed their modest cabins for generations.
The high fees are not only accompanied by tough restrictions, they also do not provide for road maintenance, water, or fire protection. Permits can be renewed if it is determined there is not a better use for the land but continued ownership is not guaranteed, as was seen in California. After the massive forest fires in 2002, 110 cabins were destroyed and only 4 owners were granted permits to rebuild.
Not everyone is sympathetic to the plight of the cabin owners. Jay Butler, director of the Arizona Real Estate Center at Arizona State University, says cabin owners are finally being charged fair market value lease rates for land they have been using on the cheap for decades; he states "It doesn't benefit me that you have this cabin, so why should the federal government subsidize your recreation?"
Whether or not you sympathize with the cabin owners, there is no denying that the government could have handled this situation in a better manner. A one thousand percent increase on any fees seems unjust and is likely to cause far more harm than good.
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