SB 567 Advances in Assembly

A bill (SB 567) supported by tenant advocates aiming to provide stronger protections for renters and promote housing stability made progress in the state Assembly this week, despite opposition from many landlord and apartment associations. The bill proposes measures to increase the requirements for landlords seeking to reclaim their properties or carry out extensive renovations.

SB 567 Advances in Assembly

What is SB 567?

The legislation currently being discussed aims to introduce certain amendments to the “just cause” for eviction provisions outlined in the California Tenant Protection Act of 2019, commonly known as AB 1482. These proposed changes have drawn attention and debate, particularly in relation to the redefinition of a property “owner” under the law.

According to the proposed legislation, an “owner” would be defined as a natural person who possesses a minimum ownership interest of 51%. The intention behind this redefinition is to provide stronger safeguards for tenants and promote housing stability. However, there may be potential consequences of this change.

The redefinition of an owner could have unintended negative effects on certain landlords, specifically those who own property through a family trust or shared ownership arrangements. This provision might restrict such landlords from occupying their own units or providing housing for their family members.

The proposed legislation seeks to strike a balance between the rights of landlords and the protection of tenants. Advocates for the bill argue that it is essential to prevent abuse of eviction practices and ensure that landlords are not using claims of personal use or significant repairs as a means to displace tenants unnecessarily. They believe that the redefined ownership criteria will help maintain fairness in the rental market.

Property must be removed from the rental market?

SB 567 also introduces a significant provision related to “no-fault just cause” evictions in California. Under the proposed legislation, if a landlord invokes the “no-fault just cause” provision to evict a tenant based on the intention to sell the property, an additional requirement would be imposed. Specifically, the property in question would be obligated to be taken off the rental market for a minimum period of 10 years.

This provision is designed to address concerns about potential abuses of the “no-fault just cause” eviction process, where landlords may use the justification of selling a property as a means to evict tenants without valid reasons. By imposing a mandatory period for removing the property from the rental market, the legislation aims to deter such practices and promote housing stability.

The proposed 10-year requirement is intended to provide a significant deterrent to landlords who might otherwise use this provision as a loophole to displace tenants and subsequently resume renting the property at higher rates or under different terms. It seeks to ensure that if a property is indeed sold following an eviction, it will not return to the rental market for a substantial period.

As the bill continues to advance in the state Assembly, stakeholders from both sides of the debate will likely engage in further discussions and negotiations to address the concerns raised by landlord advocates while aiming to maintain the overall objective of promoting tenant protection and housing stability.