Overbearing and self-righteous

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Overbearing and self-righteous

Democratic Party (DP) Rep. Yoon Joon-byeong came under fire after making a casual observation that switching to monthly rental contracts rather than lump-sum deposits was the right trend after controversial bills passed National Assembly committees to mandate a two-year extension toward long-term contracts and cap rent rises. He said fears about a crumble in the jeonse concept were outdated. He was responding to the social media hype over opposition rookie Rep. Yun Hee-suk’s five-minute argument behind his opposition to the three bills on tenants’ rights on the assembly podium.

Yoon’s comment not only upsets the public but is also misleading. It is true many landlords have been putting out rent more on a monthly basis than jeonse terms as lump-sum deposits have become less appealing due to record-low interest rates. Jeonse supplies could dry up faster if prices are capped. But commenting as if the disappearance of jeonse could be a good thing can be injuring common people. Jeonse is beneficial for both tenants and landlords. Tenants who cannot afford to buy a home are secure for a minimum of two years without worrying about extra costs.

Yoon argued he meant to say the financing cost made no difference. But he is wrong again. Loan rates for rent goes up when long-term leases change to monthly ones. Although the legal rate is set at 4 percent for conversion to loans for shorter rents, banks typically charge more than 6 percent. Yoon came under heavy attack because he owns multiple homes and would never have experienced living with monthly rent.

Despite its design to protect tenants, the three bills related to the rent market have already caused side effects before they even went into effect. Rent supplies have become scarce and prices have jumped. Landlords and tenants can war due to the sudden implementation. The ruling party is defensive of its plan. It has been attacking the main opposition for being pretentious as most of the party members will not have lived under a rent system.

The ruling party is entirely devoid of connection with the public. Ordinary people work incrementally toward their dream of having their own home one day by moving from a monthly rent to a longer lease. If jeonse is an outdated system, will the majority party move to ban it? The DP has become overbearing in its self-righteousness after it secured a supermajority of 176 seats.

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