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Can your landlord raise rent? What to do if you're facing a crazy price hike

Arizona has no rent control laws which give landlords freedom to increase the rent as much as they want.

PHOENIX — The Valley housing and renters market is booming! In the third quarter of last year, economists estimated rent increases of more than 20% and Arizona has no ceiling.

RELATED: Valley housing prices skyrocket in 2021, will trend continue in 2022?

State law under A.R.S. § 33-1329 effectively gives no limit on rental increases limiting cities to impose rent control. 

“It just lines my pockets at the expense of anything else. That’s just the way the world works nowadays. What do you expect, it’s Arizona,” said Ken Volk, founder of Arizona Tenants Advocates & Association.   

“I’ve got people calling me on the phone crying," said Volk. "I had an elderly couple just the other day saying their rent is going up $400 to $600 and saying, 'we are going to be homeless.'” 

What can you do if your landlord increases your rent? 

“One if you are on a month-to-month tenancy, the notice (rent increase) has to be delivered to you at least 30 days prior to the date you pay rent,” said Volk. 

He says that can buy a tenant time to negotiate for a reasonable increase. But if a tenant has a lease, then the landlord is legally bound to that contract. 

“Just because you have a landlord that says we need you, or you must do something, no that doesn’t apply. You have a contract,” said Volk. 

Another option is buying if you can afford it  

Rich La Rue is the designated broker for HomeSmart and says buying a home allows for people to build equity and prevents payments from increasing. 

“Once you buy a place, at least you have your stake in the ground. You’re building equity and your payment isn’t necessarily going to go up,” said La Rue.   

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