Boarding houses, apartments not covered by rent holiday in Baguio

Published June 9, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Zaldy Comanda

BAGUIO CITY – Owners of boarding houses and apartments, who operated even as the whole of Luzon was declared under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), are not covered by Ordinance No. 054-2020, or Baguio City’s ordinance on rental holiday.

Vice Mayor Faustino Olowan issued the clarification on the heels of reports tenants were using Ordinance No. 054-2020 as an excuse not to settle outstanding obligations with their lessors.

Olowan explained that spaces in privately-owned buildings, used as exclusive living quarters were not covered by the rental holiday ordinance, particularly on waiver of rentals.

Boarding houses and apartments, after all, did not cease operating as such during the ECQ.

The ordinance covers government and privately-owned buildings whose tenants were either forced or opted to close during ECQ, he added.

The ECQ was ordered by the national government to prevent spread of the Corona Virus Disease of 2019 (COVID-19).

Nonetheless, he said, lessees and lessors of boarding houses and apartments were being encouraged to negotiate grace periods or discounts pursuant to the same measure.
The Bayanihan to Heal as One Act (RA 11469) provides for a minimum of 30-day grace period on residential rents falling due within the period of the ECQ without incurring interests, penalties, fees, and other charges.

Olowan called for understanding over the confusion but pleaded with lessors to be considerate.

The lessees’ finances, he said, were also affected by the ECQ which lasted 2-months.

He appealed that, during these difficult and bizarre times, understanding, compassion, and consideration should prevail.