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Housing Department

On June 15, 2009, the City of Altoona Council passed Code of Ordinances Chapter 162 “Housing Code” establishing a Residential Rental Property Ordinance. This ordinance creates and establishes a Department of Housing in the City and requires staff to conduct inspections of all rental properties in accordance with the 2006 International Property Maintenance Code, including amendments.  The provisions of this chapter apply to all residential properties which are occupied by a non-owner and requires all non-owner occupied residential properties to have a rental certificate. No owner shall rent, lease, let, or otherwise allow the occupancy of any dwelling or dwelling unit without having a current valid rental certificate.

It is the responsibility of the property owner to make certain that his/her residential rental property has a valid rental certificate. At least thirty days prior to initial occupancy as a rental property, the owner or agent shall apply to the Department of Housing for inspection of the structure and all units therein. Certificates shall be revoked if not renewed within thirty (30) days from the date of expiration.

In order to obtain a rental certificate, a property owner is required to submit an Rental Inspection & Certificate Application to the Department of Housing.  An application fee shall accompany the submittal. Upon receipt of the owner’s application and fee,  the applicant will be contacted schedule an inspection.  If the property complies with the provisions of the adopted code, a rental certificate shall be issued.  If the inspection discloses the premises does not meet the provisions of the code, then notification to the applicant will be provided, and a re-inspection is required once the violations are corrected.

Single-family and duplex rental certificates are issued for thirty-six (36) months.  A certificate will not be issued for a duplex unless both units comply with code. Multiple-family dwelling rental certificates are issued for twenty-four (24) months.  A certificate will not be issued unless all dwelling units within the same structure comply with code.

If you have any questions about the Housing Code or about the procedure for obtaining a rental certificate, please call 515-957-5128. We look forward to working with you to provide safe, habitable environment for all occupants of rental properties in the City of Altoona.

TENANTS: If choosing to lodge a concern or complaint with this office against a property owner, then the Tenant Complaint Form must be filled out and submitted to the landlord and a copy given to this office prior to Housing staff conducting an investigation. An owner or agent shall have seven (7) calendar days from the date of submittal to address the complaint. If the complaint is not remedied to the tenant’s satisfaction within seven (7) calendar days, the Department of Housing will schedule an inspection appointment with the tenant and owner (Section 162.18). If upon inspection it is found that a deficiency exists due to the actions of the tenant, then said tenant will be charged for the inspection fee. This office will not resolve any cosmetic or personality disputes. For further information, see Housing Code Section 162.18.

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