Rent control

A Roundup of Rent-Control Measures in the Bay Area This Election

Blanca Retano is one of many Richmond tenants to experience a significant shake-up in their monthly rent this year. This past April, her landlord bumped it up $300-a-month, which jumped the price of her two bedroom to $1,400. She wants to move, but she says it's difficult to find a place for her husband and four kids for less than $2,000 a month. "It's unjust," she told the Express in Spanish, via a translator. She said the landlord doesn't pay attention or fix things, either, which makes it worse. "Hay cosas destruidas, ratones, cucarachas — tenemos muchos problemas con animales."

Bay Area Voter Guide

The November 2016 election ballot is daunting, to say the least, but there are some real gems at the city and county levels that renters and those who want to fight against gentrification and displacement don't want to miss. We've put together a simple flyer to use when you vote. This year, when you vote, you can help keep tenants in their homes! 5 cities are going to the ballot to pass rent control, which would collectively protect at least 125,000 people from displacement.

Through the "Eviction Mill"

WHEN ELENORE WILLIAMS' family of seven moved into a new apartment in 2013 and found it infested with fleas, she says, management’s response was to give her a bottle of Hot Shot insect killer spray.

“The landlord did not make repairs,” Williams wrote in court documents. “[The] dishwasher hasn’t worked [in] over a year, my son caught a skin disease called PLEVA from the fleas biting him... Mold in [the] bathroom has not gotten done, which caused my son to [begin] taking a steroid inhaler.”

Poll: Majority Support Repealing Statewide Ban on Rent Control

As housing costs increase across the state, a slim majority of Oregon voters support repealing the statewide ban on rent control — with the most support being in the Portland area.

According to a new poll by DHM Research, 52 percent of statewide voters support eliminating the existing ban on rent control.

Support is highest in the Portland area, where 58 percent support a change in Oregon laws to allow cities and counties to enact their own rent control policies.

Renters Highlight Lack of Affordable Housing with National Day of Action

More than 110 million people in the United States are renters – a reflection of how the American dream of owning a home has increasingly become a fantasy. And many of those renters who cannot afford to buy a house are straining to pay rents that consume more and more of their incomes. According to Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies, one-quarter of renters in the U.S. pay more than half of their earnings on housing.

Renters Unite to Demand Affordable Housing

The lack of affordable housing across the country has gained increasing attention in recent months. A report released earlier this year by the personal finance website SmartAsset found that in 12 of the top 15 US cities, rents had increased from 2015 to 2016. In some places, rent prices skyrocketed; San Francisco, Seattle and Miami all had increases of over 7 percent. In Los Angeles, average rental rates went up 17 percent.

Dueling Rallies on Peninsula Rent Control Initiatives

It was National Renter Day of Action on Thursday, and there were dueling rallies on the Peninsula, where the housing crisis has become politcial, with looming rent control initiatives on the November ballot.

Measures Q and R would limit rent increases and no-cause evictions in San Mateo and Burlingame, respectively.

On Thursday, Ruby Blake said she's not sleeping at night because of an eviction notice she received. Instead, she's up three or four times a night praying.

"It can happen like that," Blake said. "If we don't find anything, we will be homeless."

Landlords Submit Anti-Rent Control Petition in Santa Rosa

Opponents of Santa Rosa’s new rent control law appear to have submitted enough signatures to suspend the law and put the issue before voters.

A local property manager aligned with the California Apartment Association, which advocates for landlords statewide, turned in five boxes of petitions apparently bearing 12,543 signatures at City Hall Monday morning, Santa Rosa City Clerk Daisy Gomez said.

Petition gatherers needed to submit 8,450 signatures of registered voters by Thursday to force the City Council to either repeal the law or send it to a citywide vote.

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