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Board agrees to extend cap on rent increases


Small rent increase in unincorporated areas

The Board of Supervisors has extended–but slightly increased–a cap on allowable rent increases for tenants in rent-controlled apartments in unincorporated areas.

In November of last year, the board approved a temporary 3% cap on rent increases for tenants of buildings covered by the county’s Rent Stabilization and Tenant Protections Ordinance, and for mobile home spaces.

That cap is set to expire on Dec. 31. The cap will be extended through June 30, 2024. The increase in allowable rent hikes will jump to 4%.

“Keeping people in their homes by stabilizing rent to keep it affordable is essential in preventing homelessness,” Supervisor Lindsey Horvath, who co-authored the motion with Supervisor Hilda Solis, said in a statement after the vote. “Doing so is responsible, just, and necessary in the

face of the homelessness crisis we face–anything less will undermine our ongoing emergency response.

“This moment calls us to level the playing field and protect our most vulnerable while we gather better data on rent stabilization impacts throughout our unincorporated communities.”

While the 4% cap will be in place for six months, the county will conduct an analysis during that time of the economic impact of “recently enacted rent increase formulas to recommend permanent changes” to the county’s rent-stabilization ordinance.

Barring any changes to that ordinance, once the 4% cap expires on June 30, 2024, increases of up to 8% would be permitted.

“Strong eviction protections are critical in preventing mass displacements–especially for low-wage workers who are essential in keeping our economy running,” Solis said in a statement. “What happens when food service employees, hospitality staff, and janitorial workers are unable to afford places they call home? Today’s vote on extending the rental increase cap for stabilized units and mobile home spaces is critical to helping us avert more people from falling into homelessness–an issue we are severely grappling with.”