Can't Flee the Fees

Anna Alabaugh manages more than 30 rental properties for owner Chris Hopkins. She says a lot of owners who invested in rental real estate after stock market declines in the early part of the decade are now feeling the pinch.

"Insurance, everything's escalating," Alabuagh says. "And it's difficult for the landlord to keep up with it all. You have tenants who don't pay their rent, and they leave the city with bills as well. If it's in the tenant's name it comes back to the landlord."

Residents who now live in homes reconverted into apartments probably wouldn't notice much difference since they most likely already pay the fees that are being passed along. She says, however, dwellers in multi-unit complexes she and others own would definitely see a difference.

"It depends on what they use, what they'll have to pay," Alabaugh says. "Forty to 50 dollars a month probably. It needs to be addressed, the situation needs to be addressed."

And if that isn't enough for Parkersburg residents, their sewer rates could be going up again.

The city utility board is considering a rate hike, which if later approved by City Council, would be on top of a $2.30 average increase passed earlier this year.


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