California Black Media Briefs: Landlords Are Hiking Rents Before Rent Control Law Takes Effect

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Before a new rent control law Gov. Gavin Newsom signed in October goes into effect in January, some landlords around the state are trying to get ahead of the restrictions they see coming by slapping tenants now with double-digit rent increases and no-violation evictions.

AB 1482, the Tenant Protection Act of 2019, will limit the amount landlords can hike rents within one year to 5%, plus local inflation. It will also protect tenants who have rented a place for more than one year from no-violation evictions.

The law only exempts rented single-family homes and condos that are not owned by corporations.

There are reports from all around the state about the sudden new rent increases and rise in evictions. According to a renter advocacy group, ‘Tenants Together,” about 36 cities – including Long Beach, Los Angeles, Pasadena and Stockton – have responded by passing local ordinances to prevent evictions or place temporary moratoriums on rent increases.

The good news is that once the law goes into effect next year, any rents raised since March 2019, the month the bill was referred to the Legislature, will drop back to what they were at the time. But evictions that happened in that same period will not be reversed.

‘Tenants Together” says there are legal resources and vital information available to help Californians affected by rent hikes. Communities can also pressure their local governments to pass urgent ordinances against the practices.

Some landlords are pushing back, saying that this period before the signed bill becomes law allows them an 1 lth-hour chance to bring the rent on their properties up to market- rate prices and get rid of bad tenants.

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