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South Portland considers capping rental increases at 10% a year

Corey Templeton
via flckr
A view of South Portland and Portland Head Light from Fort Allen Park.

South Portland is considering a new ordinance that would cap rental increases at 10% a year.

City leaders outlined the plan at a workshop this week.

A majority of the council appeared to support the plan, saying that it would reduce displacement and unexpected price hikes.

But Councilor Misha Pride says he's concerned that the threat of rent control could prompt more landlords to convert apartments to condos.

"And I'm concerned about a decrease in new construction, because who wants to build in a place, where they're going to get less for selling the building to a landlord, because the landlord isn't going to be able to have as much control over what they can charge for rents," Pride says.

Landlords with fewer than 15 units would be exempt from the new limits, and rents could still be increased by more than 10% after a unit is vacated.

The council is expected to vote on the ordinance next month.