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California Rental Housing Laws Update – August 2018

by | 0 comments | Aug 30, 2018 | 4.5 min read |

Since the beginning of 2018, the United States rental housing market has seen much change, California included. In an earlier article in January, we highlighted and discussed the newly enacted the newly enacted California rental housing laws of 2018 which you can read in case you missed it.

Despite California’s rental housing laws being amended at the beginning of the year, a couple of other updates has been done again with some of them becoming effective from August 2018 and others after.

In this post, we will bring you updates to the California Rental Housing Laws which will be effective from August 2018.

Price Gouging during a State of Emergency (AB 1919)

This bill makes it an offense for a rental property landlord, whether individual or corporations, to raise rental prices for an existing or a prospective tenant more than 10 percent during a declaration of emergency. It also makes it a misdemeanor to evict a tenant after the proclamation of a state of emergency in order to rent the property out to another tenant.

This bill reads:

Be aware that recent emergency declarations are in effect for Riverside, Mariposa, San Bernardino and Shasta counties due to the Ferguson, Carr and Cranston Wildfires. You are therefore prohibited from raising rent by 10 percent for 30 days after the emergency declaration issue date. Keep in mind that the governor and local officials’ can extend these protections after the expiration date as they deem fit.

Unless the emergency declaration is extended again, rent protections for Mendocino, Napa, Solano, Sonoma and Ventura Counties in response to last year’s wildfires will end on December 4thwhile Siskiyou and San Diego’s will end on August 4th and 5th respectively”.

You can read more about the AB 1919 bill on the legislature.ca.gov website.

Eviction Process Changes (AB 2342)

Rental housing laws would not be complete without changes to eviction policies. This bill would require landlords to extend the period before starting an eviction process. Judicial holidays (including Saturdays and Sundays) will not be included in the eviction notice waiting period. This bill is expected to become effective on September 1, 2019.

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Law Enforcement and Emergency Assistance Protection for Tenants and Property Owners (AB 2413)

Currently, the law in relation to an unlawful detainer allows victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, human trafficking or elder/dependent adult abuse to attach a documented copy of a restraining or protection order or report by a peace officer.

This bill further protects the renter’s and property owner’s right to call law enforcement or emergency assistance on behalf of a victim of abuse, crime or individual emergency that the caller believes needs law enforcement or emergency assistance to prevent or de-escalate. It would also prohibit landlords from retaliating against victims or their households from contacting law enforcement or emergency assistance in the context above. It will also allow victims to provide a statement or witness report from a qualified third party.

You can read more about the AB 2413 bill on the legislature.ca.gov website.

Section 8 Voucher Acceptance in San Diego

On July 30, 2018, the San Diego City Council successfully passed an ordinance that requires landlords to participate in the Section 8 Housing Voucher Choice Program and other additional assistance programs. Effective from August 1, 2019, all rental property owners within the city of San Diego will be required to accept Section 8 housing vouchers.

This ordinance will prohibit discrimination based on the source of income from the rental assistance of any federal, state, local, or nonprofit administered subsidy programs.

The City Council and San Diego Housing Commission will be putting together an education and outreach program over the next year to educate landlords about the ordinance and the Section 8 program. These rental housing laws update will have drastic effects on the overall rental housing market in San Diego.

Related: Six Myths About Rental Property Pricing (Landlord Guide)
Recommended: NYC Landlord Sued For Rental Housing Discrimination, Made Children Take Unnecessary Lead Tests 

Rent Control Initiative in California

By November 2019, the Costa Hawkins Act will be in the hands of California Voters in relation to National City and Santa Cruz. If passed, it will allow rent caps on rental properties and allow the inclusion of single family homes and newly constructed rental properties in Rent Control.

Currently, activists in places like Glendale, Inglewood, Long Beach, Pasadena, Pomona, Sacramento, Santa Ana and Santa Rosa are still collecting signatures before they can go to the polls on the Costa Hawkins Act. 

Evictions Due to Unlawful Weapons (AB 2930)

Currently, rental properties in the city of Oakland, Sacramento and Long Beach are filing for an action on an unlawful detainer to abate the nuisance caused by illegal conduct involving unlawful weapons or ammunition. This law will cease to be effective on January 1, 2019. AB 2930 will eliminate the sunset date and impose a state-mandated local program.

You can read more about the AB 2930 bill on the legislature.ca.gov website.

Temporary Rent Control Ordinance for Mobile homes

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has approved temporary rent caps on mobile homes. This will be in effect for 180 days after final approval next month. It only applies to mobile home parks in unincorporated areas of the county and limits rent increases to 3 percent a year for leases of 12 months and below.

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Menlo Park Ordinance

This is a set of codes which operates in relation to the Menlo Park area. The Menlo Park area is currently working on passing an ordinance which might require landlords to compensate tenants that are evicted without cause or on whom they impose rent increase above a certain level. These rental housing laws updates can trickle throughout the Menlo Park and Palo Alto area if successful

Tenants will be eligible to receive cash in equivalence of three or four months market rate rent from their landlords when they are evicted unjustly. They would also be eligible for assistance when they face a rent increase greater than what is allowed in relation to the Consumer Price Index.  Plus five percent (5 percent) over a period of twelve (12) months. They will also receive an additional month’s rent if there is at least someone who is disabled, below 18 years or above 62 years old.

Rental housing laws get confusing and are ever so changing. Make sure you stay updated on the rental laws in your area by scheduling a free rental consultation with Onerent Property Management. Onerent offers transparent and simple rental services for the modern homeowner.

Schedule a free rental consultation and receive a rental property analysis to see how much your home is worth. 

Fred Glick
About the Author
Fred Glick is the VP of Real Estate and Broker of Record at Onerent. As a licensed broker and experienced real estate professional of over 30 years, Fred has contributed to stories on CBS television, Wharton Business radio, NPR’s Marketplace, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the Philadelphia Inquirer. He is also CEO of US Loan Mortgage Inc., US Spaces Inc., and Arivva Real Estate Brokerage.

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