Spiros Zorbalas, bad landlord, faces rental license revocation hearing

Spiros Zorbalas, South Minneapolis's most notorious landlord and the subject of a City Pages expose three years ago, is facing the possible loss of the rental license for three properties today.

Despite documentation that his properties are rat- and roach-infested, filled with lead paint, and lacking adequate heat, Zorbalas has continued to rent out his properties for years. But if his licenses are revoked, he could be banned from being a landlord in Minneapolis.

"Ultimately, if these three get revoked then there's a process to not have him be able to hold license for a period of five years," says Matt Lindstrom, City spokesman.


The City of Minneapolis wants to revoke the rental licenses for Zorbalas's properties at 905 Franklin Avenue, 3725 Cedar Avenue, and 1830 Stevens Avenue, because Zorbalas worked on the homes without a permit. 

In a thinly veiled attempt to evade the City's notice, Zorbalas formed "shell" corporations that attained the rental license for each property. Though all of the corporations list him as an officer and do business at the same address, Zorbalas argued that he merely owns the company that manages the three corporations.

However, an administrative law judge was not convinced, and recommended in December that Zorbalas be shut down as a landlord. 

Today, a subcomittee of the City Council holds a public hearing on the matter, at 1:30 p.m. in City Hall. On April 15th, the entire City Council is scheduled to vote to revoke Zorbalas's ability to be a Minneapolis landlord. 

Related coverage:
*Spiros Zorbalas update: Are notorious properties getting cleaned up?
*The Slumlord of South Minneapolis