The City of New Orleans has implemented the Healthy Homes Program, a new registration program that requires the owner of any parcel of real estate containing residential rental units to file with the City, annually, a certificate attesting that the residential units in that parcel of real estate meet certain minimum quality standards. This applies to properties containing rental condominium units, rental STRs, and rental apartments.

This new requirement became effective January 1, 2024. The registration requirement is being phased in, with different filing deadlines for different properties, as outlined below.

Presumably this program was implemented because of several well-publicized recent instances of landlords maintaining sub-standard rental properties in the City. The new regulations can be found in Chapter 26, Article XIII of the City’s Code of Ordinances. Article XIII is entitled “Healthy Homes Program.”

Healthy Homes Program website >

Healthy Homes Program Regulations

The regulations set certain minimum standards for rental units, including an operable fire and smoke alarm, a working bathroom, a working hot water heater, a working HVAC system, a working electrical system, safe working cooking appliances, a sound roof, and the absence of mold. Each year, the owner of any property containing rental units must file a registration document with the City, certifying that all of the foregoing conditions are met with respect to all rental units on that property. There is no fee for filing the registration certificate. There are penalties for failing to file the registration certificate.

The regulations provide that the City will, in response to the filing of the registration, issue a certificate of compliance to the property owner. The City has not yet provided the mechanism by which inspections might be made to verify the matters set forth in the registration and to issue the certificate of compliance.

Download the registration form >

Filing Deadlines

Obviously a number of important details remain to be spelled out. However, the filing deadlines are clearly set forth in the new regulations, and one of the deadlines is fast approaching.

For a property with 50 or more rental units, the registration form must be filed on or before February 15, 2024.

For a property with between 4 and 49 rental units, the filing period is July 1, 2024 until August 15, 2024. For a property with between 1 and 3 rental units, the filing period is January 1, 2025 through February 15, 2025.

Therefore, owners of properties containing more than 50 units need to act fast. Other property owners have some time within which to study the program and become prepared for it.

The program applies on a property-by-property basis. Thus, the owner of 100 doubles scattered throughout the City, each containing two units, has the benefit of a filing period of January 1, 2025 through February 15, 2025, but also has the burden of having to file a separate registration for each of those two-unit doubles. On the other hand, the owner of a single facility with 200 units needs to file only one registration covering all of the units in that property, but the filing deadline for that 200-unit building is February 15, 2024.

Questions can be addressed to the Healthy Homes Administration of the City at 504-658-7133 or by email at healthyhomes@nola.gov.

Filed under: Commercial Real Estate, Industry News, Residential Real Estate
Archives >