As of today August 1, 2018, a new law takes effect requiring all Baltimore City rental properties, including one- and two-family and multi-family dwellings, to be licensed to operate as a rental by January 1, 2019. In order to receive a license from the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) the property must meet two requirements:

  1. The property must be registered with DHCD using the online portal and
  2. The property must be inspected by a State Licensed, Baltimore City registered Home Inspector.

Inspectors at Property Inspection Pros are registered and in good standing with the Baltimore City Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) as a Rental License Home Inspector and can walk you through the process. Failing to register and have your property inspected could result in a $1,000 fine and suspension, revocation or denial of your rental license. The Section 8 inspection, or another similar government program, will be accepted. The approval letter must be uploaded with your documents.

New Rental Inspection Licensing Rules

  1. All Multiple-family dwellings (MFD) must be licensed.
  2. All one- and two-unit dwellings must also be licensed.
  3. All rental units must pass an inspection to obtain a license.
  4. All rental units must have a sanitation plan educating tenants on proper waste storage and disposal.
  5. The effective date of January 1, 2019.

What if my rental property does not pass inspection?

  1. Owners are required to relocate tenant in situations where unit becomes uninhabitable and the tenant is not at fault for the condition.
  2. The city can collect the cost of relocation of the tenant and any related expenses when the owner fails to relocate tenant.
  3. Cost is a lien on the property.

Below is a summary of the Rental License Inspection Form.

We will complete one form for each unit in a dwelling. Please look over the form and make any necessary repairs before you book the inspection.

  1. ELECTRICAL: Electrical wires are not visible in living areas All electrical outlets are grounded and protected by cover plates. All lighting fixtures are functional and switch protected by cover plates.
  2. SMOKE DETECTORS: Smoke Detectors are properly installed on every level of the home and inside each sleeping area. These do not have to be interconnected and can be 10-year sealed lithium battery-only units. They must be in proper working order.
  3. CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTORS: Carbon Monoxide Alarms are properly installed outside of sleeping areas and near fuel-burning heating units. They must be in proper working order. Properties without any fuel-burning appliances, wood burning stoves or an attached garage are exempt.
  4. PLUMBING: There is both hot and cold running water with the hot water having a minimum temperature of 110°F. There is adequate water pressure throughout with no leaks below fixtures and all toilets properly flush. Property is free of interior leaks with no standing water in the basement
  5. BASEMENT SLEEPING AREAS: If there is a bedroom in the basement, there is proper egress in case of fire.
  6. STAIR RAILINGS: Railings are present for interior and exterior steps with more than 3 risers.
  7. INTERIOR: The interior of the property is clean/sanitary and free of all signs of infestation by rodents, insects, or pests. Walls are free of holes that will allow rodents, insects, or pest to enter. Windows function properly with locking mechanism.
  8. EXTERIOR: Walls are free of holes that will allow rodents, insects, or pest to enter. Gutter and downspout system is installed and designed to channel water away from the property. The exterior is clean, sanitary, and free of rodent burrows and all trash and debris that could attract infestation by rodents, insects, or pest.
  9. UTILITIES: Gas and electric service is properly installed and ready for service.
  10. LEAD PAINT: If property built prior to 1978, there can be no peeling, flaking or chipping paint on the interior or exterior. The property must have a current Lead Free Certification or Full Risk Reduction Certification. Property Inspection Pros perform lead paint risk reductions inspections and can even do one at the same time as the rental inspection.
  11. HEATING: If the inspection is being conducted during the period of October 1 and April 30th, inclusive, the property must have a sufficient heat supply to maintain an average temperature of 70°F in all habitable rooms, bathrooms and toilet rooms and 65°F in all other rooms.
  12. OTHER CONCERNS: Are there any other readily observable problems that don’t meet the minimum requirements of the Baltimore City Building, Fire, and Related Codes that in the inspector’s opinion represent an immediate threat to the health or safety of the occupant?