Hesperia landlords will now have to treat family just as well as they treat any other renter.


The Hesperia City Council voted at its Dec. 20 meeting to bolster the 2007 Rental Housing Certification program. The change means $150 each year in fees for anyone who is letting someone else occupy their home even if it's a family member living there rent-free.


The program requires that all rental properties in the city be registered and inspected once a year to make sure all health and safety codes are being complied with. Previously, the program didn't apply to properties where no rent was being collected, which often equated to residences occupied by a relative.


However, the council at its last meeting voted 4-0 (with Mayor Russ Blewett absent) to amend the program, now called the Property Management Certification program to match similar programs in Adelanto and Apple Valley. Hesperia now requires that all non-owner-occupied properties be inspected annually, at a cost of $65 for a property management certificate and an $85 re-inspection fee.


"So now they will be included, so the city can ... make sure that properties are properly maintained and meet the state's health and safety codes," city spokeswoman Kelly Malloy said Wednesday.


City officials estimate the change will add approximately 100 more properties to the 3,700 or so properties already in the program.


The next regular meeting of the Hesperia City Council will take place at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 17 at Hesperia City Hall, 9700 Seventh Ave. (The previously scheduled Jan. 3 City Council meeting has been canceled.)


Beau Yarbrough may be reached at (760) 956-7108 or at beau@HesperiaStar.com. Follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/Hesperia.Star.