Recently approved by the California Assembly on Wednesday, June 19, a new proposal which places a cap on rent hikes across the state will now be advanced into the Senate, albeit with major changes that lawmakers partnered with realtors to make.
As time was ticking down, there was an 11th-hour handshake deal with the California Association of Realtors that resulted in raising the rent caps proposed under Assembly Bill 1482. Now, they will be 7 percent along with the rate of inflation which currently averages 2.5 percent in California.
As lawmakers were working to meet the deadline of Friday, June 21 to approve bills in the California Legislature, Assembly Bill 1482 was the only tenant protection bill that was approved and passed to move forward into the Senate. However, a companion bill to AB 1482 known as Assembly Bill 1481, did not come up for a vote and will not be eligible to be discussed for another year. This bill would have made tenants to obtain just cause before evicting tenants.
In fact, over the course of this year, the California Legislature has worked relentlessly to pass housing bills that benefit both parties. As a result, this year has seemed to be a win for both realtors and landlords, especially in regards to Assembly Bill 1482. The California Association of Realtors will maintain many of their interests, and renters will be able to avoid many of the rent- hikes that have occurred across California.
The amended version of Assembly Bill 1482 was approved by a vote of 43-28. This only came after a number of changes were made to the bill which was created with the hopes of helping both the California Association of Realtors as well as renters. In the weeks leading up to the compromise, the bill would have set a firm cap of 5 percent, plus inflation. However, the bill has now set the cap at 7 percent, and the limits have an expiration date of 2023. Plus, property owners with fewer than ten single-family homes will not be subject to the limitations established by the bill.
The bill was crafted with language that looked to appease both parties, and the California Legislature clearly worked to achieve this goal. Despite the compromise, the bill is believed to be a step towards protecting the rights of tenants. By protecting them from rent-gauging, it should set the precedent for years to come.
Assembly Bill 1482 will apply for all types of rental properties. However, it will not impact tenants in the cities of Los Angeles, Santa Monica, and West Hollywood because these cities already possess a number of rent control laws.
Although AB 1481 did not come up for a vote at this years California Legislation, politicians and proponents hope that it will work hand-in-hand with AB 1482 to further protect the rights of California tenants. Overall, Assembly Bill 1482 appears to be a solid start for tenant-right bills in California.