On November 14, 2018 the County Board of Supervisors passed legislation that brings rent and eviction controls throughout the unincorporated area of the County of Los Angeles that consists of 88 cities and over 50,000 apartments. While this is “a temporary measure” the writing is on the wall that it will become permanent.
The trend is for more and more local governments to pass rent and eviction controls the limit rent increases and the reason(s) for evicting tenant.
The importance of this current trend of legislation to the owner/lessor of rental properties throughout the State of California cannot be overly stressed.
In the case of the current legislation for the County of Los Angeles over 50,000 rental units will be affected.
Key points of the County of Los Angeles Rent Control Law is that it (1) affects apartments built prior to 1995; (2) it limits rental increases to 3% per year; (3) for the purpose of the 3% rent increases it uses rent that was in place on September 11, 2018 and (4) tenants in the regulated apartments can only be evicted for just cause.
Evictions in the County of Los Angeles regulated apartments means that a landlord will no longer be able to use a 30/60 Day Notice to Evict a Tenant. (Target /30-60-day-notice-to-vacate) Such evictions must be based on (1) the failure to pay rent; (2) breach of provisions in the rental agreement such as having too many occupants in the rental unit & having unauthorized occupants living the rent unit; (3) engaging in conduct that is considered a nuisance to other tenants and the neighboring community; (4) engaging in criminal activity; (5) engaging in gang activity; and (5) refusing to allow access to the landlord to make repairs to the rental property.
As we have seen under LARSO and similar legislation the cost of evicting a tenant will rise substantially because the landlord will now have to prove a just cause for eviction. This will bring attorneys from B A S T A, Neighborhood Legal Service, Eviction Defense Network and the like into the courtroom to defend the tenants affected by the new rent control law in the County of Los Angeles.
Demands for Jury Trials by these eviction defense lawyers will rise throughout the County of Los Angeles costing the landlord more dollars for the preparation for trial and loss rents due to the increased time the eviction case will come to trial.
In response to this legislation and others on the way it is important for the landlord to review their written rental agreements to add more teeth to the reasons for eviction. There should be a default section in every rental agreement that includes a definition of a cause eviction that mirrors the ordinance.
The landlord should begin to prepare addendum to the rental agreement that will let the tenant know about the 3% annual increase. The landlord should also serve a 24-Hour Notice of Entry to every rental unit to inspect the rental unit for needed repairs and the number of occupants living in the rental unit.
Finally, the landlord/property management companies must understand that more and more rent control laws are being considered by many Cities. Even though Proposition 10 failed the 2018 Election the Rent Control Advocates have bigger plans in place to limit the return a property owner can expect from the rental property.
At Fast Eviction Service, help on any of the issues discussed in this article is simply a click or phone call away. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call our office at (800) 686-8686 to discuss your questions for a free evaluation of your case.
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