Rental Program

In June of 2023, the Grimes City Council adopted the Grimes Rental Program.  This program is necessary as the State of Iowa requires cities with a population above 15,000 to regulate rental units within their respective cities.  The most recent census indicated that the population of the City of Grimes is 15,397. 

Since that time, the City has been going through a process to develop the program.  This process included evaluating the existing programs in the Des Moines Metro area, conducting meetings with stakeholders, rental owners, and tenants, and receiving feedback from the City Council.  

The intent behind the Rental Program is to establish a process that minimizes the burden upon rental owners and tenants while ensuring that adequate life safety measures are in place for tenants.  The general framework for the program is listed below. 

  • Rental owners shall be required to register their rental unit(s) every two years with the City.  Following the registration of your rental units, the City will provide an invoice for the necessary rental fees. For single-family, townhomes, and condos, the fee is $70.00/unit.  For apartments and duplexes, the fee is $70.00/unit for the first unit within the structure, plus $30.00/unit for all other units within the structure.  
  • Rental owners shall be required to provide a Rental Owner Acknowledgment Form with their registration.  This form indicates that the owner has reviewed each unit for conformance with the inspection checklist.  This is also referred to as the self-inspection. 
  • Rental owners of multi-family units are required to provide accommodations for recycling within the property.  The City understands that this may require planning and investment into the property and will provide a grace period with the first registration cycle.  If accommodations do not exist currently, please provide a plan and schedule with your registration materials.  Enforcement of this provision will occur with the second registration cycle. 
  • The City will seek to schedule and conduct an audit inspection of each rental unit, every four years.  Audit inspections will be conducted based on the same inspection checklist that the rental owner utilizes in their self-inspection.  Audit inspections will be scheduled based on geographic area, unit type, and ownership.  If you wish to be prioritized for an audit inspection, please inform the Development Services Department, and staff will do their best to make the accommodations.  All audit inspections will be scheduled by the City with the rental owner. 
  • Complaints are encouraged to be handled between the rental owner and tenant.  The City will however intervene in situations where a complaint, which has been provided in writing to the tenant, has not been responded to or mitigated within 10 days of receipt.  The City will also intervene in situations where matters of life safety are in question.  In these situations, the City will assist in the evaluation of the complaint and will help to establish a time frame and plan for mitigation.