NNPHD to host free renting crash course for first-time tenants


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Students can use this QR code to sign up for the Rentwise course.

Maddie Genoways, Staff Writer

Calling all students considering renting this upcoming school year; the Northeast Nebraska Public Health Department (NNPHD) will be hosting a free class on the steps and benefits of renting a home on Saturday, March 25. 

The class covers Nebraska Rentwise’s curriculum of safe and productive renting strategies, and will be offered in both English and Spanish at the Wayne Community Activity Center from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Admittance is open to all, and lunch will be provided for all attendees.  

According to WSC’s website, less than half of current students live on campus, with 44% of the student body living in the residence halls. A large population of commuting students live in rental homes or apartments, and with more future sophomores deciding whether to move from the dorms to their first rented space, safe and responsible renting practices are vital to the success of students in the community. 

This course will be taught in English by Lindsey Hallgren and in Spanish by 

Georgina Bernel, both of whom are Community Health Workers at NNPHD and certified Rentwise trainers. Hallgren described the class as a day packed full of essential survival tips for first-time renters.  

“We’ll cover everything from managing money, setting budgets, finding a house, landlord-tenant law, home maintenance, moving out, getting your deposit back, to the general expectations you should have for your landlord, and they should have for you as a tenant,” Hallgren said.  

Rentwise’s program advocates for a strong understanding between renters, landlords, and neighbors to help more Nebraskans obtain and maintain their leases, and stresses overall tenant responsibility. To summarize Rentwise’s stance on the benefits of renting vs. buying, renting generally offers tenants lower overall payments, aid with maintenance and repairs, inexpensive insurance, less strict credit requirements, and simpler relocation.  

The Rentwise class will follow several modules encompassing the different aspects and responsibilities that come with renting a home, and will include interactive demonstrations and a Q&A with local landlord and owner of White Farmhouse Realty, Trisha Peters.  

“We’ll start with communication strategies and conflict resolution to get everyone used to talking with landlords,” Hallgren said. “The later modules will cover managing money and getting through the rental process.” 

NNPHD hopes this free course will help apprehensive first-time renters learn what to expect from a renting situation, versus a dorm or family housing one.  

“It’s a complicated subject, especially since a lot of people don’t fully understand the laws surrounding landlords and tenant rights. This class is for anyone who’s never rented, or anyone who has had issues with renting in the past, or just anyone who wants to understand the ins and outs of the renting process,” Hallgren said. 

Due to space and food limitations, the class is capped at 20 seats, which are all currently available as of March 21. For any hopeful renters who are unable to attend NNPHD’s in-person class, there is a general online version of the course offered on Rentwise’s website.

Students can use the QR code shown above this article or call 402-375-2200 to sign up.