The local landlord is a go-to bad guy in the pantheon of Bullywood villains. Trotted out to help a young Vito Corleone emerge a don in “The Godfather,” a landlord is pressured not to evict, but instead even to lower the rent, for a tenant who squanders a below-market lease by keeping a dog against the rules.

Landlords are worse than mobsters in Lala Land but not here in New Hampshire, a state in desperate need of more workers who’ll need somewhere to live. Enter the local landlord stage right, our state’s best hosts.

Owning rental property is a cornerstone of middle-class investment in the Granite State. Many families have parlayed a couple grand squirreled away in a property early in a marriage into a college education for a child or a retirement home. Now, with real estate prices up, expenses rising, higher taxes, and ever more government regulation “empowering” sometimes surlier and more litigious tenants, why not cash out? It’s not an easy way to turn a buck, and it’s getting harder.

Institutional investors see an opportunity and are loading up on rental properties. Fueled by global markets flush with cash, a large company might come to control thousands of rentals. The headaches of day-to-day operations offloaded to a property management company, this owner won’t be coming around to see how you’re doing.

To a corporation controlling thousands of rental units, regulation, inflation, taxes, lawsuits, are just expenses to be passed along to the tenant or government agency paying the rent. More regulation will surely help speed their growth and the flight of small-time landlords, and that’s what the Democrats’ legislative agenda in Concord hopes to deliver.

One bill requires landlords to provide 90 days notice of an eviction instead of 30. That’s 60 more days on top of the minimum of 90 days that anyone can realistically expect to execute an eviction in New Hampshire.

Another bill gives renters more time to “deal” with proposed rent increases. Rep. Casey Conley, the Dover Democrat sponsoring it, says 30 days isn’t enough time to find a new home in the state’s tight housing market. Forty-five days is? They will have a couple more weeks to find their lower-cost Shangri-La elsewhere.

There is even a bill to prohibit landlords from refusing to accept Section 8 renters and all the federal regulatory entanglements that come with that. One Nashua landlord found this out the hard way, compelled to pay a woman $35,000 for not allowing her “emotional support” pooch.

As young Vito said, “Of course, the dog stays. Right?”

Sunday, January 16, 2022

The Biden administration is overdue for a booster shot. The efficacy of its public health messaging is clearly wearing off, as more and more Americans become less and less confident in what it says.

Mayor Joyce Craig, confronted with what looks like a nice little pay scandal in the Manchester Fire Department, has her “policy director” out with the standard government-issue response.

Friday, January 14, 2022

The local landlord is a go-to bad guy in the pantheon of Bullywood villains. Trotted out to help a young Vito Corleone emerge a don in “The Godfather,” a landlord is pressured not to evict, but instead even to lower the rent, for a tenant who squanders a below-market lease by keeping a dog a…

When did New Hampshire’s Republican Party develop such an inferiority complex? We reference its House majority attempting to stack the voting deck to win future congressional races in the 1st District while ceding the 2nd District to the Democrats. Somewhere the ghost of Jim Cleveland must b…

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

In the matter of Harmony Montgomery, age 7, missing for more than two years, New Hampshire is going to need more than the “it takes a village” platitudes coming from New Hampshire’s outgoing child advocate. New Hampshire needs a full and transparent audit and accounting of any and all intera…

Outside of the Salem area, where he lives and runs his Freshwater Farms business, and Concord, where he is president of the state Senate, Chuck Morse flies under the radar. That will surely change this year as he campaigns for the U.S. Senate. He has our thanks and best wishes. He has done e…

Sunday, January 09, 2022

Some things are supposed to go downhill in New Hampshire. Perhaps it is fitting that even as the state loses the institution that is Secretary of State Bill Gardner, alpine skiing has been turned upside down.