Sunday, June 7, 2009

Keith Reitman Doesn't Like To Be Called A Slumlord...

Photo By John Hoff

First of all, let me make one thing clear: I've never had an unpleasant interaction with Keith Reitman. He is a savvy, self-made man who possesses a modest empire of what might be called "moderate income housing." Some might apply a particular label to Reitman's enterprise. However, Reitman has told me--in person--he takes offense at the phrase "slumlord."

To this I respond, "I have worked for low-income property managers in the past. I think it's fair to say I have slumlord blood running through my veins. And I don't mean that in a negative way."

But Reitman doesn't like the phrase. At all. So when people who have a problem with Reitman talk behind his back--and they so often do--they make a point of saying "slumlord" loud and often.

By what appears to be strategic shifting of loyalties, Reitman has played a role under both the "Old Majority" and "New Majority" in the Jordan Neighborhood, where grass roots politics have the intensity of revolution. Currently, Reitman sits on the board with "New Majority" members, and talks with them amicably, and votes on board issues. However...

...over in the Jordan Neighborhood, they have NEVER forgotten Reitman's true nature. It is never far from their mind how he was the seller at 1564 Hillside Ave. N., the deal at the center of the Larry Maxwell mortgage fraud trial, and how somehow $5,000 got scraped off the seller's side of that deal and ended up in the pocket of Jerry Moore.

Lately, here at the Johnny Northside blog, I have an emerging mission and emphasis. I will get my hands on lists of properties owned by slumlords, I will publish these lists, and I will let the chips fall where they may. Several weeks ago, somebody sent me a list of Reitman properties. KEEP IN MIND this list is a couple years old. It is not considered current. Consider the list a beginning, a basis for discussion.

The list was compiled by some people in the Jordan neighborhood who were researching slumlords. At some point, a public presentation was made, along with PowerPoint and pictures projected on a screen. The young woman giving the presentation was kind of shy, not really much into public speaking, but she had a job to do and was up there in front of the audience doing it, by god.

In the middle of her presentation about Reitman properties, somebody started to boo. Loudly. Repeatedly.

Boo. Boooooooooo. Boooooooooooooooooo.

This person turned out to be Keith Reiman himself. And, as a result of this action, a kind of imbalance was created in The Force, an imbalance which I now intend to remedy through a two step process.

Step One. Here is the list which I emphasize, AGAIN, is an old list:

1. 1405/1407 21st Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55411 - Provisional – 13 Housing violations, 132 Police incidents, 20 Police reports filed.

2. 2111 4th St N Minneapolis, MN 55411 – Provisional – 53 Housing violations, 40 Police incidents, 2 police reports filed.

3. 1406 Golden Valley Rd Minneapolis, MN 55411 – Provisional – no violation, incidents or reports.

4. 1600 Golden Valley Rd Minneapolis, MN 55411 – 52 Housing violation, no police incident, reports.

5. 1301 Holden St N Minneapolis, MN 55405 – 13 Housing violations, no police incidents, reports.

6. 1564 Hillside Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55411 – Approved – 44 Housing violations, 75 Police incidents, 11 police reports filed.

7. 2373/2401 James Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55411 – 26 Housing violations, 72 Police incidents, 11 Police reports filed.

8. 620 Lowry Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55412 –Approved – 25 Housing violations, 67 Police incidents, 9 Police reports filed.

9. 1910 Penn Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55411 – Provisional – 11 Housing violations, 23 Police incidents, 1 incident.

10. 2331 Penn Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55411 – Provisional – 23 Housing violations, 1 Police report filed.

11. 2335 Penn Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55411 – Provisional.

12. 2341 Penn Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55411 – Provisional - Homestead.

13. 2522 Penn Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55411 – Approved.

14. 1900 Portland Ave Minneapolis, MN 55404 – Provisional.

15. 1336 Upton Ave N Minneapolis, MN 55411 - Provisional.

16. 1409/1405/1407/1411 West Broadway Minneapolis, MN 55411 - Provisional.

17. 1415 West Broadway Minneapolis, MN 55411 -Approved.

18. 2329 West Broadway Minneapolis, MN 55411 - Provisional.

19. 2601 West Broadway Minneapolis, MN 55411 - Provisional.

20. 2619 West Broadway Minneapolis, MN 55411.

21. 2623 West Broadway Minneapolis, MN 55411.

Step Two: Mr. Reitman, I have this to say:

Boo. Boooooooooooooo. Booooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo.

Readers and contributors, keep the lists coming of slumlord empires dragging down North Minneapolis.


Anonymous said...

Straight from Websters:

Main Entry: slum·lord
Pronunciation: \ˈsləm-ˌlȯrd\
Function: noun
Etymology: 1slum + landlord
Date: 1953
: a landlord who receives unusually large profits from substandard properties

While an individuals' interpretation of slumlord certainly leaves open for debate whether or not Mr. Reitman conforms to the dictionary's definition, I would propose that he is certainly representative of a certain standard that all good Jordan residents (along with other Nomi neighborhoods.

My personal opinion is that he is a slumlord and that he doesn't care snot about the quality of life for those that actually reside in Jordan. I truly wish someone would prove me wrong about this.

I have followed the Jordan neighborhood for roughly 11 years now, and have watched individuals like Keith "hitch their horse" to numerous different wagons as the situation suited them.

It is imporant to keepp focused on the fact that demanding that rental property owners maintain their properties to a suitable standard is not mutually exclusives to having a high number of rental properties within a neighborhood. Nor is it a form of gentrification... It only means that those that push that agenda firmly believe that everyone, including rental tennants should have the right to live in a decent dwelling.

Anonymous said...

Just a small point (and yes, you said the list was old): Mr. Reitman no longer owns 7 of the 21 properties according to the city database.

Johnny Northside said...

Yeah, could you give more details about that?

Anonymous said...

Keith is far from being the worst of landlords in our neighborhood. He lives in north Mpls. He attends public meetings and is a board member for JACC. He knows more about the public transit plans for north Mpls than anyone else I know. While he and I have had our differences, he has been available and willing to hear feedback, some of which he has taken. I don't think anyone can accuse him of hiding in the 'burbs while we are stuck dealing with his tenants. Perhaps the fact that he is active in the community and everyone knows him makes him an easy target and a name that is recognized.

Before we all jump on Keith, let's go after some of our more outrageous landlords. I agree his dealings with the property at 1564 Hillside are troubling, but he has not been charged with any crime. In fact, he was not even named in the criminal complaint, unlike Mr. Moore.

You admitted that the list of complaints was an old list. Until more recent information is produced, perhaps a little less hostility is in order. Does anyone know how many properties Gregg Johnson still owns in NOMI? Now there's a Slumlord.

Anonymous said...

Johnny, speaking of slumlords, have you ever heard of Kaizen Property Solutions, also operating as A&M Property Management? They are located at 3021 N. 3rd. Some really great people moved into one of their units on my block and the drug dealing biz is hopping as well as a steady stream of garbage, screaming kids who's favorite past time is beating their pitbull with sticks. We just love having them for neighbors!! Wondering if there are other houses "managed" by these folks and what state they are in.

Anonymous said...

Listed purchase price of 1564 Hillside in 1993 by Mr. Reitman was $6,000. Since that time there were roughly $7500 (declared value) of permitted improvements made in to the property.

What was the sale price to "Mr. Foster"?

Would this qualify him as a slumlord in Websters definition as "a landlord who receives unusually large profits from substandard properties"?

Johnny Northside said...

In regard to the entities named....

Get me lists. Get me lists of their properties and I will publish them. My email address is

Anonymous said...

I would suggest that neighborhood associations on the northside work together in establishing a written and quantifiable set of standards based on municipal codes/ordinances, along with developing the processes for dealing with renatl property owners.

While the recent poster may be correct in stating Mr. Reitman probably isn't the most "outrageous" landlord on the northside, it becomes pretty hard to determine what is and is not acceptable behaviour (for a landlord) unless there is a defined and quantifiable guideline for accurately determining "outrageous" behaviour....

At first-blush, just looking at the number of times city law/code enforcement have been involved with properties Mr Reitman either currently owns, or has owned, leaves me to believe that something is lacking in the management of those properties.

However, it should be up to the municipality (with neighborhood involvement) to determine what is and is not acceptable. Tempered of course with the legal rights of landlords....

Anonymous said...

The purchase price for Mr. Foster was 179,000.00 A real deal for that nicely kept up property wouldn't you say? Only a profit of over 165,000.00, and selling it through Maxwell, with a 14% commission, and giving 5,000 to Jerry Moore, and over 100,000.00 to various other greedy hands gives one reason to be careful with any deals involving any of these characters.

Anonymous said...

Re: the 1564 Hillside address yes he did only pay 6000.00 he took advantage of a family who lost there parent and due to housing mareket at the time was taking awhile to sell. and then offered only 6000.00 to the family that he knew did not want to keep the home. then procedeed in stripping it of hand carved baisters and marblle fire place as well as pocket doors I assume he sold them to a dealer that works with poeple removating older homes you can get a great price for it. then put up cheap walls to block where he removed the fire place and the pocket doors with shotty drywall work so yeah he may not be the worst but he sure as heck is not the best. and yeah what a profit he made on the property. now it sits vaccant and boarded up really kind of sad.

Johnny Northside! said...

Are you connected with the family? I'd be interested in getting more details. Can you email me at

James Shoals said...

Keith's a theif he stole my cat,

Johnny Northside! said...

Oh, that's just ridiculous and furthermore you can't even SPELL the word "thief." Who would steal a cat? There are shelters full of cats and they can barely give them away. There are stray cats all over the place being fed tuna by the ghost of Joy Mattice. I will believe a lot of stuff about Keith but to say he stole your cat? Silly. I'll publish you comment--federal law protects me in this regard--but I will point out how off-the-wall your comment is.