Beyond California

As 'Personal Use' Evictions Appear To Spike in Toronto, Tenants Suspicious of Landlord Cash Grabs

Marc-André Giasson is joining a growing number of Toronto tenants who say they've been burned by a landlord claiming to need to their apartment for personal use, then putting it back on the market.

Giasson's apartment was sold to new owners several months ago, and his former landlord told him that they needed it for their own use.

So he signed a document agreeing to move out at the end of his one-year lease and began the onerous process of looking for a new place in a city where rental housing availability is at a 16-year low.

No-Cause Evictions Imminent at North Portland Apartments; Tenants Push Back

Life is somewhere between hard and heartbreak for the majority-Latino tenants remaining in The Melrose apartments, where residents of 40 of its 72 units are facing an eviction deadline of Feb. 1.

This is the latest, and probably the final, wave of no-cause evictions at the apartment complex, where tenant rights have gone head-to-head against its ownership for the past year.

Brooklyn Landlord Tried To Boot Latino Tenants, Demanded To Know Their Immigration Status: Lawsuit

A Brooklyn landlord is trying to drive out Latino tenants, demanding they prove their legal immigration status and cooking up baseless eviction cases, according to a federal lawsuit.

Now current and former residents at two Sunset Park buildings are looking to bring Adel Eskander’s years of alleged discrimination to a halt with the class-action lawsuit filed Tuesday in Brooklyn Federal Court.

East Harlem Rezoning Did Not Consider Rent-Stabilized Tenants, Lawsuit Says

Two East Harlem residents filed a lawsuit Thursday challenging the city’s recent rezoning of the neighborhood, claiming the move was preceded by analyses that failed to account for pressures facing them and other rent-stabilized tenants.

The suit claims the city did not consider rent-stabilized housing tenants when estimating how many East Harlem residents could be vulnerable to displacement after a rezoning, and what the city could do to protect them.

Seattle-Area Rents Drop to a Level That's Still Far from Affordable for Most

According to Mike Rosenberg, the Seattle Times business reporter, rents in King and Snohomish counties are finally falling "significantly" for the first time in a decade. By significant, he means a 2.9 percent drop "as compared to the prior quarter." Rosenberg suggests that the market is removing some power from landlords and transferring it to renters because the number of empty apartments is growing. All of this sounds like supply and demand have not been de-linked and deformed by unknown forces.

Washington Renters' Protections May Be On the Way

It was a car accident that catapulted Gina Owens into advocacy. In 2000, Owens was working as a medical assistant and activism wasn’t on her radar, but a collision left her with disabilities that prevented her from continuing with her job. The landlords of her Central District apartment were understanding … for a time. They allowed her to pay about 75 percent of her $475 rent as she searched for new work. She survived on Temporary Assistance for Needy Families prior to earning disability payments. But she was evicted from her apartment once the backlog on her owed rent reached $1,000.

Rent Control Gets New Lease on Life from Two Democratic Gov Candidates

Rent control, until now the domain of Chicago’s far political left, could be going mainstream with two major Democratic candidates for governor endorsing the concept.

State Sen. Daniel Biss of Evanston and Chicago businessman J.B. Pritzker each say they would support legislation to lift a statewide ban preventing local governments from limiting how much rent landlords can charge.

Lifting the ban, which was enacted by the Legislature in 1997, would allow home rule units such as the city of Chicago to enact ordinances controlling rent increases.

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