Washington Landlord Association

A look at the New Organization by Rob Trickler

27 Jul 2017 12:09 PM | KATRINA CHRISTOFFERSEN (Administrator)

A look at the New Organization by Rob Trickler

First let me begin by giving all of our members a profound welcome to the newly merged organization. Whether you are member of Washington Apartment Association doing business as Washington Rental Owners Association or a member or a Washington Landlord Association, as a result of this merger you are now members of the oldest and largest landlord support organization in the State of Washington. With a membership of approaching 9,000 paid members across the state, you have a very strong voice in Olympia and our industry. Welcome to your new leadership role.

Let me open a bit on what this powerful new marriage brings to the table. First, if you are a WLA member you have had a tenant screening option but there are some things you may not know about that tenant screening.  Despite having been presented for many years as a WLA benefit, the truth is that WLA has absolutely no ownership interest in the screening that has been promoted. That means no money spent on that screening goes back into WLA to support the cause. What you may know is that it had a very limited, in fact, singular menu.  All you could do was check court records and not credit or other financial matters.  What you now have is a strong partnership with NTN that allows you a wide variety of choices.  You may check credit details personally or you might just provide your personal criteria and standards and let our partners tell you if the candidate meets those standards.  You might also want to do checks of the court and even courts of other states if you have a candidate that has moved from another state. You may want to know how they behaved in that former state. You can do that now.

We offer an attorney help line. While there may have been limited help by phone in the past you now have an option that can get you to an attorney practicing in landlord tenant law in your area. There are three of us and we very nearly cover the entire state in our practice area and we can provide competent advice in your landlord tenant issue.  It is not an open hotline that has no limits but most answers can be provided in a 10 or 15 minute call and you will get that for free without having to hunt and peck through the phone book or google.  Let me add that Eric Steven, Chester Baldwin and myself very much know what we are doing in this arena and take pride in supporting landlords.

Both organizations have long had legal forms related to landlording. I am going to be brutally honest. All three of the afore mentioned attorneys have spent significant time trying to fix problems that landlords have had based on the forms that WLA has been providing to its members. Now you get forms that are vetted and tested and proven my attorneys that practice as landlord attorneys. You know have free access to those reliable forms in a digital form that will be updated accurately and responsively as the law requires. Your forms library is responsive to the law as it is, not as a layperson would like them to be. We have your back.

One of the biggest additions is that you now have in your corner one of the most respected and effective lobby teams on Capitol Hill. Going strong for this organization for circa 30 years we have had a great deal of success. Respect from law makers is not something that just comes over night. It must be earned and nurtured and we have done that. Everyone in our industry has a very influential voice in Olympia and that cannot be undervalued or replaced on a whim.  The number of bills that would negatively impact landlords and rental owners that have been stopped by our team is stunning and we have had a number of successes getting helpful bills passed such as our deceased tenant legislation.  We are all members of the legislative “A Team” now.

Political Action Committee is another benefit that the merger brings to the table.  It probably goes largely unnoticed but we win a number of battles for our industry by getting the right candidates elected and reelected.  For example the issue of rent control has been a looming battle for several years.  That may not be obvious to many members because we have managed to keep a bill allowing rent control from even coming to the legislative floor by helping to elect and reelect the candidates friendly to the landlording industry.  This organization has an active PAC that does not sit idly by hope we hit the election lottery.  We hold fundraising events for our candidates where we can sit across the table from them, tell them our concerns, stories and hopes then get up and shake their hands and hand them a check showing that we support them when they support us.  That gets noticed.  That makes a difference.

Oh and did I mention that our organization, which you are all members of, is an owner of the Trends Trade Show held every year in December at the Seattle Convention Center. This happens to be the largest landlord orientated trade show in the Pacific Northwest. Possibly the west.  Not only does this trade show provide a tremendous wealth of information in the form of vendors and workshops, and a venue to advertise and market, but it also brings in significant revenue to the organization. Probably my favorite part of this asset is the education that it provides to our members. That is why I remain an active member of the Trends board and do my part to guide our Trends programs.

Let me close with a couple of simple but relevant points. Our members get this all at the lowest cost of any similar organization.  Let’s face it $50 is less than a single dinner with your significant other. We are flat giving everything I mentioned above away at that rate. Do an internet search on some other organizations and the cost of their memberships and you will find that this is the best value you can find anywhere in my opinion. In effect, this is the cheapest insurance you can buy for protecting your hard earned and hard kept landlord investment. Your membership makes it possible and every member is to be commended for protecting our livelihood and industry.

Semper Fi

Rob W. Trickler

President WLA

Attorney and Counselor at Law.

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