With new renter protections, LA is now the second-largest pool of regulated apartments in the U.S.

The Los Angeles City Council adopted important renter safeguards on Friday, including one that establishes nationwide just-cause eviction provisions. As a result, the city’s apartment stock is now the second-largest collection of regulated housing in the nation.


February 1st, 2023 | Los Angeles, CA


The hearings over the last week have revealed that renters have more council allies than ever before and that this group is prepared to take action.

Two of the suggested safeguards have not yet been put to a formal vote, but one significant safeguard for tenants has. There are now only roughly 14 grounds for eviction of a tenant due to the development of just-cause safeguards for renters. These laws shall be applicable to all rentals in the City of Los Angeles, including single-family residences and newly constructed apartments, as indicated by the term “universal.” The new rule is now in effect because it was passed with an urgency clause.

These safeguards are comparable to those that presently apply to the estimated 650,000 rent-stabilized homes in the city, but according to the city’s housing authority, these new regulations will also apply to an additional 400,000 units. A housing department official informed the council on Friday that the city will have the largest inventory of controlled housing in the nation, excluding New York City, with more than 1 million units.

The lifting of the eviction moratorium has brought comfort to many landlords, albeit short-lived with this introduction of new limitations on how they can conduct business.

Aaron Cohen, Chief Operating Officer of CGI+ Real Estate Strategies, expressed excitement about the conclusion of the eviction moratorium at the end of January.

But according to Cohen, these additional renter protections that aim to mimic the impact of the eviction moratorium will put a cost on landlords that they shouldn’t have to bear.

“It was never the right solution to me, to say ‘Let’s force landlords to take the burden of this,’”  Cohen said.  “It doesn’t make any sense to me. ” He vehemently disagrees that landlords should be forced to arbitrarily bear this responsibility at random.

Cohen pointed out that even after the moratorium on evictions expires, tenants can only be evicted for failing to pay their current rent, not for any rent they owe during the time between 2020 and the end of the moratorium. Tenants have 12 months to make those payments.

Landlord Joyce Mitchell called into the council’s housing and homelessness committee meeting on Wednesday and stated, “We feel we have no representation with this city council.” She claims that small-property owners of color, like herself, stand to lose everything as a result of the eviction moratorium and additional laws since they have invested their retirement funds in their homes.

According to Mitchell, it’s past time to stop holding mom-and-pop apartment owners accountable for the fact that the city and county elected authorities have done nothing about the homeless epidemic in this community. Mitchell added, “We will be the next wave of homelessness in this city if you continue to treat us this way.”

Research demonstrates that eviction safeguards helped keep people housed throughout the crucial period of the pandemic, according to tenant advocates and renters. These supporters contend that maintaining renters in their housing shouldn’t end with the pandemic’s emergency phase in a city where a sizable portion of the population is homeless.

Nithya Raman, a council member whose district includes Encino, Silverlake, and Los Feliz, described the additional safeguards as the most significant since the establishment of the Rent Stabilization Ordinance in a tweet on Friday.

Before the end of this week, the council is expected to hear from the two last components of the renter safety net. The other would establish a minimum amount of time that would need to pass before tenants could be removed for nonpayment. The first would mandate that landlords provide basic relocation assistance for tenants who move out because they have experienced a rent rise of 10% or more.

Sasha Harnden, the public policy advocate with the Inner City Law Center, said, “We must put the two remaining permanent protections in place so that we can have a really full safety net of protections and make sure that we do not see a rise in evictions and homelessness.”

According to Harnden, only those two safety net components can effectively address rent and renters in the future. In the event that they are put into effect,   “we will have the strongest protections for non-payment evictions in the county of Los Angeles,  maybe in the entire nation,” he claimed.

In a way that we haven’t seen in a while, according to Harden, the council’s five new members have demonstrated genuine leadership and real engagement with these issues.

Although Cohen said he doesn’t expect these new laws to have a significant impact on his firm, he does claim that they raise the cost of doing business in the city, which is counterproductive in a city where more affordable housing is desperately needed.

In contrast to essentially forcing landlords to accept the loss, Cohen urged municipal authorities to really go the route of figuring out ways that charitable organizations pay for unpaid rent in order to help property owners pay these outstanding debts.

The SVN Vanguard team knows investors need an experienced commercial property management company by their side. Contact us for multifamily properties for sale/lease.


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