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I agree with the above. Things change. Got to keep up with it. This ain't no backwater burg - it's a place where prices go up. Luckily, opportunities have been created that allow those who take advantage of them to meet the rising costs. You get a choice - complain on behalf of all the victims of circumstance you can identify, or get with it. It's one or the other-not time enough to do both. Consider - some former cab drivers drive for UBER now and some of their kids are software engineers.
Here we go again. Legislation based on supposition. Actual harassment is already well covered under existing tenant laws. If a landlord is foolish enough to engage in harassment in the ways described by this article, he or she places themselves at a high risk for legal action, without the new law as a factor. Landlords, as a class, are not foolish, though of course, as with any group, there are always some.
In an ongoing expression of frustration at the rising cost of housing, however, a new law gets enacted that does nothing to address the rising cost of housing. At best, it aggravates the situation by providing some opportunistic tenants with an additional tool to use to extract payments from their landlords -whether or not they deserve them and whether or not an actual problem exists that is widespread enough to require such a remedy. That is unfortunate, as what this kind of thing does is add to the list of reasons to sell rental property in Oakland and reinvest elsewhere. That, in turn, could be of interest to investors who use the Ellis Act.
The rent was set 40 years ago by the market. The landlords at the time based their rent on comparable listings. You want to cling to a naive view or apply blame, that just doesn't matter. The comps will still be whatever they happen to be at any given time. Rent for a vacant unit today is set by the market - today's market. Way it is. Anger directed at people who chose real estate as an investment is simply beside the point. This is a central problem to the discussion. Right or wrong -who cares? It is what it is. Madonna said it well when she responded to a equation about her royalties, "Lucky me."
The landlords raised rent in accordance with allowable increases. From a cost perspective, the effect on the tenant's rent is the same whether they informed the tenant with the exact paperwork the rent board wants them to use or not. He didn't want the increases, saw an opportunity, and tried to extract payment from them. Once the tenant filed his case on the technicalities, they had no alternative but to protect themselves and get into the details of how the regulations all work. This would lead them to discover the possibility for exclusion from rent control, which they filed for and received from the Board. Had he simply asked them for the proper rent increase paperwork in the first place, he would most likely have gotten it. But he went adversarial, even though he was not being gouged. It is interesting that while this article explains the rent was not being raised more than it should have been, it still manages to portray the landlords in an unfavorable light. A bias in the premise, perhaps?
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