Pros & Cons of How Rent Control Effects Housing in California
Rent control laws in Los Angeles County seem to be in the landlords favor since rent prices through the roof, most apartment tenants spend 2-3 of their income just in rent every month. Rent regulations also effect the real estate housing market in a drastic way.
Rent control laws are a set of rules that regulate or prohibit the landlord from raising the rent. It is not a universally supported concept. Generally, the Rent Stabilization Ordinance (RSO) is applied to rental properties that were first built on or before October 1, 1978, as well as replacement units, under LAMC Section 151.28.
and is either an apartment, condominium, townhome, duplex, two or more single-family dwelling units on the same parcel, rooms in a hotel, motel, rooming house or boarding house that is occupied by the same tenant for 30 or more days consecutively, or a residential unit(s) attached to a commercial building.
Rent control and landlords
A landlord is prohibited to raise rents above a prescribed amount, meaning there is a price ceiling for rent for that specific apartment. This rent regulation stipulates grounds for eviction, required repairs, and rent increases.
The RSO covers allowable rent increases, registration of rental units, legal reasons for eviction,
and types of evictions requiring payment of tenant relocation assistance.
The landlords’ rights under Rent Stabilization Ordinance (RSO)
Checklist for no-fault evictions:
- File a Landlord Declaration of Intent to Evict filed with HCIDLA
- Give the tenant a 30-day and 60-day written notice (some require 120-day and/ or up to year extension)
- Payment of tenant relocation assistance
Keep your property well-maintained
The city’s regulations protect the health, safety, and welfare of residents and you can check here to ensure your property is meeting city standards, says, Local Records Office.
Services for landlords offered, including but not limited to: workshops on Rent Stabilization Ordinance, online bill payment and registering a foreclosed property online.
What if my property is not rent stabilized?
Even though your property is not covered under the Rent Stabilization Ordinance, you and your tenants still have rights and responsibilities under the California law.
Rent control pushes to spread across California
Rent control is becoming more popular and lawmakers and tenant advocates are pushing to repeal laws from banning cities to impose rent control or limits to regulate rent increase, the Wall Street Journal reported. As advocates in California “have gathered 100,000 of roughly the 365,000 signatures required to put a measure on the ballot in November in order to repeal a 20-year-old law that has statewide limits on rent control”, and with the law repealed, the cities would then be able to put rent control on apartments built after 1995 and on single-family rentals.
“We cannot build our way out of a crisis this proportion,”
says Elena Popp, the founder of Los Angeles-based Eviction Defense Network, and explains rent control is the best way to protect affordability.
Though Tom Bannon, the president of the California Apartment Association takes the opposing view, as he acknowledges it is an unpopular one in the Golden State, “at the very heart of this you have to build and you have to build fast.”
Rent control affects the demand for housing
Making an uncontrolled market, prices will vary with the amount of demand, thus, making the availability of rentals lower. This shortage of housing will affect vacancy rates to lower and prices to keep at a current value. And ultimately, will make it much harder for tenants to find housing.
As rent is low, more renters will attempt to seek their own housing and those college kids who live with their parents and could afford it would naturally move out to pay for an apartment. And it would create a struggle to find adequate housing.
The long-term effects in an unregulated market
It then becomes very difficult for investors to profit from the residential housing with rent control, and their livelihood to profit themselves from the involved investment will turn to start building commercial structures instead of residential housing. An article from The New York Times illustrates that there was more residential development taking place in New York during the great depression than in 1997- due largely because of rent control.
Rent control furthermore, does not have only have an effect on the housing that would be developed, but also the housing that currently exists will have reduced quality and/ or eliminated entirely. And because the landlord does not profit from the property, they are no longer able or willing to make necessary repairs. Normally landlords would pay to improve a property to either get more profit or to compete for a larger pool of better tenants.
Will landlords and tenants work together in finding a happy medium?
Rent control continuously becomes a controversial issue and creates an imbalance for both landlords and tenants. And clearly, as landlords start to renovate and skyrocket their rents, I can clearly see how the middle-low class is furious. By keeping landlords from spending a pretty penny on unnecessary renovations and landlords working with renters together by maintaining the rental (and by renters treating the property as their own) can be a wise solution for both parties to work together in finding a happy medium.