Landlords: We Can Help You Get Your Property Licensed

The goal of thisshouldbeillegal.com is to ensure all collegiate off-campus housing is licensed and has been inspected for safety. DCRA can help you get the information you need to be sure you are legally renting to students – or any resident – and that your property is safe.

You can dowload a business license application and view fact sheets at the DCRA Web Site. Choose your property type and all of the information is available. You can also view the housing code information page for tips and details on what we look for during an inspection if you want to walk-through your own property.

Our goal is make student housing safe and we hope you can help us in this effort by getting licensed and putting your property through the proper inspections.

If you have issues you need help with, you can call our partners at the D.C. Department of Housing and Community Development. Gilles A. E. Stucker Jr., Housing Provider Ombudsman with the Housing Regulation Administration, can walk you through any issues. You can call him at his office at 202.442.4569.

4 Comments on “Landlords: We Can Help You Get Your Property Licensed

  1. I want to rent out one room in my house, which is also my primary residence. Rooming house, which was a category on the business license just didn’t seem right. However, when I emailed DCRA looking for guidance I got silence. The whole thing seems set up for investment properties.

  2. M –

    Thanks for your questions. If you are living in the house, you can have up to 3 unrelated people living with you without being flagged for a business license. If you did not reside there, you would have to get a license. Hope this helps and thanks for your question. – Mike

  3. Thanks it does. I was under the impression a license was required reading the DCRA FAQ (http://dcra.dc.gov/dcra/frames.asp?doc=/dcra/lib/dcra/information/publications/rooming_house_faq.pdf). It said I needed a basic business license for housing. So when I went into the system for that, that is where I got confused.
    So just to be sure, I can rent out the guest room in my primary residence, to 1 adult roommate, and it’s legal without a business license provided I report the income?

  4. M –

    Absolutely. A rooming house is much different than your proposing to do. Rooming House is when a property owners essentially turns their home into a motel, renting rooms to individuals on a daily or monthly basis. This is really no different than if you asked your significant other to move in with you. That would obviously not require a license. Think of it that way. Now if you had four, five or six roommates in a single-family home, that is where a red flag would pop up. Thanks again.

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