Anti-Eviction Movement Gains Momentum

Mark Andrew Boyer

Mark Andrew Boyer

En Español.

The anti-eviction anxiety and rhetoric playing out on the streets is moving to City Hall as Supervisor David Chiu plans to introduce a new tenant protection law during today’s Board of Supervisors meeting.

Chiu declined to provide details until the law is introduced, but his would be the sixth tenant protection law introduced by city supervisors recently. “I don’t want to spoil the surprise,” he said.

The Board of Supervisors has adopted three tenant protection laws, including one that would give priority for public housing to those who’ve been evicted under the Ellis Act. Two other proposals are working their way through the legislative process.

“The current laws are not keeping people at their homes,” said Tyle Macmillan of the Eviction Defense Collaborative (EDC), a coalition of nonprofits.

Many of the ideas being proposed are coming from activists and residents who have been meeting at conventions throughout the city. A city-wide convention held on Saturday at the Tenderloin Community School was a standing-room-only affair. Some 400 activists, politicians and tenants from throughout San Francisco chanted anti-eviction slogans and proposed laws aimed at slowing down evictions.

“Whose city?” chanted Maria Zamudio, an organizer with Just Cause, a nonprofit that helps tenants fight evictions. “Our city,” responded the crowd in unison.

“Vote them out!” one man yelled in the background as the crowd laughed.

The meeting was a culmination of four conventions held throughout the city designed to come up with ways to stop evictions in San Francisco, which are on the rise in the city. Ellis Act Evictions, a law that allows landlords to evict tenants to get out of the rental market, have increased by 170 percent from 2010 to 2013, according to a report by the city’s budget analyst.

Neighbors have proposed everything from an eviction moratorium to taxing people who work outside of San Francisco.

“We have momentum,” said Macmillan of the EDC. “Some of the ideas are pretty radical, but even if they lose at the ballot at least it will be part of the conversation.”

Their apparent success is also playing out down the street at City Hall as local politicians seeking higher office have adopted some of the ideas. Six of the 11 Board of Supervisors were at the meeting, including Supervisors David Campos, Malia Cohen, John Avalos, Eric Mar, Jane Kim and David Chiu.

Last week, Campos, who is running for State Assembly, introduced a law that would force landlords who enact the Ellis Act to pay higher relocation costs to tenants. Under the proposal, landlords would be forced to pay the evicted tenants the difference between their current rent and a comparable apartment for two years. The hope is that it will persuade landlords that eviction is simply not worth it.

His rival in the city-wide election, Supervisor David Chiu, introduced legislation that would legalize some of the estimated 30,000 illegal in-law apartments — a move that would grant those residents protection under the city’s rent laws. He plans to introduce another tenant protection law on Tuesday’s Board of Supervisors meeting.

Blanca Reyes, who is facing the threat of eviction from her rent-controlled apartment on 25th and Florida streets, welcomes the politician’s attention.

“They offered me $25,000. I haven’t accepted their offer,” she told the crowd. “It is my neighborhood and I don’t have to leave.”

At the meeting people were asked to rank seven policy proposals, ranging from a moratorium on evictions to imposing a tax on expensive rentals. The ranking is just to see which policy they prioritize because it’s possible that they could pursue all seven ideas, Macmillan said.

Back at the school gymnasium, Zamudio was encouraging the crowd when one of the banners fell and hit her from behind.

“Evictions, man,” she said, “they hit everyone.”

Now that the convention is over, organizers plan to march on 24th Street on February 26.

Below are some of the proposals being considered.

“Anti-speculation tax.” Impose windfall profits tax on speculators who buy and sell off housing without keeping the building for at least six years. The rate would decrease each year of ownership starting at 50 percent of the gain, with the quicker the “flip” the higher the tax.

“Eviction moratorium.” One-year pause on certain no-fault evictions including owner move-in evictions for long-term tenants with more than 10 years of tenancy. Pause also on demolition and capital improvement evictions except for code compliance or safety upgrades. The moratorium would not apply to the Ellis Act evictions. Other exceptions would apply.

“Department of rent-control enforcement and compliance.” Create a new city office charged with assuring that policies comply with laws protecting tenants, monitoring enforcement and supporting research on rental housing.

“Upgrade relocation assistance.” Increase relocation for no-fault evictions (aside from Ellis Act evictions) to pay the difference between displaced tenants’ existing rents and market-rate rents for not less than two years. Proposal would follow now-pending Ellis Act relocation assistance legislation.

“Excessive rents tax.” Create a tax on rents on new rental agreements if rents exceed affordability levels set by the city. The tax would increase with higher rent level up to some level less than 100%.

“Housing balance requirement.” Restrict or condition city approval of new market-rate housing based upon meeting affordable housing goals and replace housing lost because of Ellis Act Evictions and demolitions. Policy would create incentives to build new affordable housing and preserve rent-controlled housing.

“Legalize illegal units.” Improve process to convert illegal rental units into legal rent-controlled housing. Restrict “removal of unit” evictions where units can be legalized. Waive non-essential zoning and code requirements not related to safety.

130 Comments

  1. marcos

    This relocation is going to be key in ensuring that Ellis Act evictions pay the full freight of their impacts so that the communities involved can be stabilized.

    • John

      Except that the courts will throw out anything that looks like a fee to deter Ellis because Ellis specifically bans that.

    • lol

      Less than 200 evictions a year does not make a crisis. That’s 0.08% of the whole housing pool.

      There’s a lot of hysteria out there. Yes SF is changing, but it has been going on for 240 years now.

      • nutrisystem

        Current housing prices are so high that ONLY loyal corporate drones can now enter SF. The city’s traditional role as the welcoming home for refugees and “different people” is finished. If you don’t see that as a huge loss, you don’t understand this place.

        The change is happening in slow-motion (thanks entirely to strong tenant protections), but it’s happening hard.

        • John

          But that trend would be the case even if Ellis was not allowed, because Ellis is overall a very small number of evictions.

          SF has gotten more expensive because it has become more successful and desirable. The only way to reverse that is to the the “Detroit solution” and sabotage our local economy just so we can all have cheap housing.

          And nobody wants that except for a few left-wing extremists. Remember, Ed Lee easily won running on jobs, jobs and jobs as his top three objectives.

        • lol

          You mean there are people we want and people we do not want, is that what you mean, nutrisystem?

          Glad we had this settled.

          • John

            Identity politics is predicated on such notions.

          • nutrisystem

            What I mean is I’m not OK with cutting down the Amazon rainforest and replanting it with GMO soybeans.

          • lol

            nutrisystem, your comment is extremely offensive. You are basically saying that some people are better than others and therefore should be treated differently, protected, when others should be discriminated upon.

            There are countries where this is actual policy, like Tibetans in China. fortunately the US constitution is still the law of the land.

        • zig

          I would say that loyal corporate drones like me are also being displaced. There has always been professionals in San Francisco of course. It was a normal mix for a normal city. My wife and I are both white collar and can’t afford Noe Valley, Bernal Heights or Glen Park where we were looking. Maybe we could afford a wreck in the Mission

          • lol

            I cannot afford to buy a mansion in PH neither. SF is full of smart successful people. Competition is fierce.

          • Ben

            “Maybe we could afford a wreck in the Mission”

            Then buy one while you can, roll up your sleeves and fix it up like the rest of us – and stop whining. You’re fortunate to even be able to do that, get in while you can.

          • poor.ass.millionaire

            I love corporate drones- they are reliable rent payers for me.

            You may also want to start checking out D10, as it’s more affordable, and you can get an actual SFH without uber-competitive-up-the-ass-over-bid. Matter of fact I’m a fixin” to makie my next real estate acquisition in D10, so I’m relying on corporate drones shifting over to those hoods, as i’ze ain’t inturested in rentin’ to no section8. See ya!

        • JerkStore

          The “traditional role” is an apocryphal opinion and not a part of the city charter.

      • John

        Yes, I really do not understand why there is such a focus on Ellis. If you add up every Ellis eviction that has ever happened in Sf, it is still well below 1% of the rental housing stock.

        Evictions for tenant bad behavior far exceed Ellis or OMI. more homes could be saved simply by educating tenants on the basics of their obligations when entering into a lease.

    • The courts already ban “ransom” to deter legal Ellis acts.
      Property owners have rights also and they are superior to tenants everywhere but the banana republic of San Francisco. I would love to see a proposition on the state ballot to ban rent control and property theft statewide. IT WOULD PASS

    • Jay

      Except when you are now forced to make your landlords realize they first tried to illegally evict the wrong people and , well, now they are gonna pay us a lot more. maybe not in cash but in their careers and other things. I have no sympathy for any landlord who tries to skirt laws and who think that I am going anywhere when they have 37 violations. I have no money for my crappy lawyer but i am meeting my buddy Ed tomorrow. Still can’t wait to do my Elaine B at those overpriced restaurants on valencia, like soon. :)

  2. pete

    There are more tenant protections here than anywhere in the country. You’ll be lucky to get your security deposit back after being evicted in most places. Here they give you thousands of dollars and people are still complaining? Count your blessings.

    • John

      Yes, 35 years of struct tenant “protections” have created a rental housing crisis because they have made property owners reluctant to rent out properties or to keep the tenants they have.

      So the obvious solution is to double down on the same losing ideas, right?

      • nutrisystem

        Wrong. The housing crisis doesn’t come from tenant protections. It comes from the surveillance/advertising corporations busing their drones into SF.

        • lol

          Hard to get any kind of discussion going when political activism gets in the way

          • nutrisystem

            So in your mind the tech influx and housing crisis are unrelated? And bringing up the tech influx is “political activism”, unrelated to the discussion? lol!

          • lol

            Nutrisystem,

            “surveillance/advertising corporations”

            The bias is very clearly visible. Maybe it is common to you to put these words together automatically, but the language in itself is political. You have decided by default that Facebook or Google were the enemy.

            How can we take posts at face value when the agenda is there for everyone to see?

          • nutrisystem

            Search, Social, Sexting, etc. are just the nectar that these companies use to get the bees to land.

            Their REAL purpose is spying on you in great detail, and then using the resulting dossiers to better sell advertisements. And, ominously, these dossiers may be used in the future for ANY purpose they wish.

            I think it’s important to have a realistic discussion about what “tech” is now really about., and whether we want an industry with such loathsome ethics in our midst.

          • John

            SF doesn’t have these companies in our midsts. They are mostly 20-40 miles away, and probably because SF was perceived as being more anti-business, with higher taxes and regulations.

            We benefit indirectly from SV being so close, of course. But it’s really not SF’s decision whether these businesses exist or where they are located. That is for the voters of San Mateo and Santa Clara, and I suspect they think very differently there, not least because so many of the voters work for those very same companies, and have done very very well out of them.

        • landline

          Isn’t that what those companies do? Data mining and selling ads based on that information.

          • ThatGuy

            Is that why all I get is Weight Watchers (nutriretard), Alcoholics Anonymous (twolosers) and AT&T (landidiot) ads on this goddam website?

        • John

          nutrisystem, there are many factors driving SF’s housing supply/demand imbalance. I feel sure you know that.

          Having a booming business sector here (tech) happens to be one, obviously. But having tenant protections that discourage property owners from renting them out is clearly another.

          It’s helpful to acknowledge that as a factor when more of the same is being considered.

        • Better a Tech influx that a bum influx….

        • marcos

          It comes from the Federal Reserve and Wall Street throwing negative interest rate money at the banks which then turn around and invest in speculative venture capital. The portion of that capital which ends up as wages is then recaptured by the real estate wing of Wall Street. One hand fleeces us and then washes the other.

  3. mission resident

    If they make a law allowing 30,000 illegal units “legal”, many landlords will kick out there current tenants or raise the rent the day before the law takes place. The rent on these units is probably lower than normal because the unit is illegal. This is a windfall for landlords as they’d be able to collect higher rents. unintended consequences…….

    • John

      Many owners who rented out their illegal in-law units did so only because they knew that their illegality was a valid and just cause to evict if they ever wanted the space left.

      These are usually owners who live in the same building and so it is a very different situation than the normal rental. Often they share the same keys, utilities, water etc.

      No owner of a SFH with an in-law will suddenly want to inherit a tenant who can never be made to leave. So yes, like most tenant protections, this one will hurt tenants.

      Wiener’s idea, to allow new in-law units, is a much better proposal. It actually adds housing units rather than takes them away.

      • Also any new units by state law cannot ever be rent controlled….

        • John

          Yes, and I’m really not clear whether rent control can be conferred upon these newly legally units.

          But the tenant mob will argue that illegal units are already under rent control.

          There is a type of petition at the Rent board called a Costa-Hawkins petition where a property owner can ask for a formal determination of whether Costa-Hawkins applies to a unit you own. You can ask a court to do that as well, of course.

    • citizen

      They are referring to in-law units. While anyone who is renting out an apartment is a ‘landlord,’ these are mostly just regular home-owners trying to subsidize their mortgage by renting out their downstairs. They are not big rental corporations, or even people that own multiple properties to rent out. This legislation would a) help those looking for a small studio by making more available, b) grant the same protections to thousands already living in these units that other renters enjoy, and c) help people (especially families) buy homes they otherwise couldn’t afford to.

      • John

        But it would also deter people from renting out their in-law because they would no longer be able to get it back with 60 days notice.

        • citizen

          My sister rents out her in-law unit. She really can’t afford not to. It would always be really easy to claim “renter move-in” for these in-law units, so I’m not sure that would be a concern for most home-owners.

          • John

            No, you cannot do an OMI on an in-law in your building for the simple reason that you already live in it. The law says that you have to offer the tenant another vacant unit if there is one, And the main house would become vacant if the family moved into the illegal unit. You can only have one primary home for this purpose.

            The way you currently get rid of a tenant in an illegal unit is to go to the city, declare the unit to be illegal and, when DBI signs off on that and demands a demolition of the unit, then the tenant may be evicted with 60 days notice.

            That avenue would go with this change, which would effectively create rent-controlled 2-unit buildings out of SFH’s. It’s possible that that may be illegal under Costa-Hawkins as that states that no unit may be brought under rent control that isn’t already covered by it. But it’s going to be messy.

  4. lol

    These people who are calling for diversity are showing their true colors. They are for a diversity, but only of people of their kind.

    Is this what San Francisco is about now? Social protectionism? Will it become a gated community of people who think alike, look alike? If we are going that way then we are no better than the right wing nutjobs who want to send us back into the dark ages.

    • nutrisystem

      So what’s YOUR idea of diversity? A healthy mix of millionaires, billionaires and trillionaires?

      • John

        “Diversity” means having a mix. That mix would include, say, poor Hispanics, but it would also include white hedge fund managers.

        Can you put your head on your heart and say that, in the interests of diversity, you want to see both in the Mission? Or do you somehow regard the former as inherently more desirable?

      • lol

        There is no risk of any of this happening, simply because there are just not enough rich anywhere in the BA to fill a city of 800K+

        • John

          Yes, the very rich aren’t the problem here. They are not the ones buying Mission TICs that have been forged from an Ellised rental building.

          The newcomers who are being blamed are mid-income, maybe 80K to 150K a year. Not really a lot for SF and certainly not wealthy.

          But it’s much easier to blame rich people and it feeds that grand old deadly sin – envy.

        • marcos

          “World Class” city.

      • poor.ass.millionaire

        Might I add, being a millionaire isn’t what it used to be. I know first hand, being a poor.ass.(multi).millionaire. 5 million is the new millionaire status of yesteryear (and I ain’t there, yet.)

        Besides, the way SF is going, it’s already become a city of wealthy and poor. The mere middle class millionaires are getting priced out. Sucks.

        • John

          We don’t have to have everyone in any one part of the Bay Area. some will be happier outside of SF, and they have my blessing.

      • ThatGuy

        Lol! You have *no* idea what you’re talking about.

    • zig

      In the formerly diverse SF there was a normal mix of people including white collar people. In the new San Francisco forget about being a middling white collar worker with two kids. We are being displaced too

      • John

        Isn’t the situation the same for homeowners as for renters? If you bought a home a long ago, your mortgage is low and you are Prop13′ed up the wazoo. But if you are an aspiring homebuyer, it’s tougher.

        Likewise, the boomer renters who have been squatting for a couple of decades are sitting pretty, Ellis aside, while new renters are stuffed.

        We have policies that help boomers and screw younger folks. Social Security and Medicare are federal examples of the same structural bias.

  5. John

    About half those ideas are illegal under existing law and the other half require a substantial level of funding that has been neither identified nor approved.

    The best way to encourage rental housing is to have a healthy, vibrant rental housing business in SF. These tinfoil-hat ideas achieves the opposite of that and will lead to more evictions, higher rents and more units that are kept off the market or which have their use change to non-rental.

  6. lol

    The City has painted itself into a corner and instead of doing the right thing and acknowledging the absurdity of the situation, they prefer to go further into the theoretical assumption that adverse effects of failed policy can be resolved by strengthening these same failed policy.

    Hey, it will work this time, right? And if it doesn’t, we can always add more rules.

    And the unpainted corner gets smaller and smaller…

    • nutrisystem

      Yes, the city has made itself SO unpleasant that nobody wants to be here! lol.

      • lol

        nutrisystem,

        You probably misread my post. I am saying that we have painted ourselves in a corner. Low turn-over due to overreaching renter protection has created the most expensive rental market in the country. This means that a few 1000s techies will have a disproportionate effect on rental rates, which makes the insanity of the current situation unsustainable.

        The goal was to make SF affordable to its resident. The reality has been that only the wealthiest will move in now. And these wealthy folks in themselves are creating a cottage industry that lives off displacement. It’s not huge, but it’s starting to become noticeable.

        • John

          The only way the left can further tighten rent control is to essentially mandate that property owners in SF rent out any unit they are not living in, and ban all other uses.

          Of course, it was Santa Monica’s attempt to do something like that which led to the Ellis Act in the first place.

          These people never learn.

  7. nutrisystem

    Can we ask Ed “knee pad” Lee to removing special tax breaks for multibillion dollar companies like Twitter? That would be an obvious first step in bringing the housing crisis under control.

    • John

      No, because it’s a five year deal.

      The supervisors passed it too, you know?

    • lol

      A few years ago everyone thought Mid-Market was a hopeless mess that would stay that way for ever.

      And Twitter employees would choose to live in SF anyway. The alternative would be Twitter buses!

      • John

        Twitter was only moving to Brisbane anyway, so not a bad commute.

        Anyway, Twitter had since had it’s IPO which was the event excluded from SF’s payroll tax. So it’s moot now and not much would change if their tax break went away

        It was a one-time deal to cover the IPO.

    • citizen

      Can I ask how would that help? (honest question) Is it because you think Twitter employees would make less money and put a lower upper-limit on rentals? Because Twitter would have left San Francisco, and fewer of its employees would live here? Is it because you think the revenue from the taxes could be spent on some affordable housing programs?

      • nutrisystem

        Rolling out the red carpet for Twitter with special tax breaks is not only unfair to other businesses which must pay the normal tax, but causes thousands more employees to come and seek housing – predictably driving up prices.

        If there were high residential and commercial vacancy rates in the city, perhaps such a policy could be justified. But just the opposite is true.

        So it’s a double screw-over: unfair special tax breaks (to a super-rich company), and higher rents.

        This is standard operating procedure for the Burton-Brown-Newsom-Lee political machine: use of public office as a tool for sneaky piracy deals.

        • John

          Tax policy should normally not be discriminatory, and be as broad-based as possible. All good so far. But there has always been the concept of an “enterprise zone” for areas that are depressed and not attractive to business. You offer businesses a tax break to go there. Every US city does that so you cannot blame Brown/Lee etc.

          In this case, the city didn’t lose revenues. It gained them, since twitter was relocating out of the city, and partly because SF is the only city that tries to apply payroll tax to stock options.

          Your other point applies more generally to any level of business success. The more local business does well, the more housing costs will tend to go up. IOW, higher costs are a quid pro quo of a good economy.

          So are you arguing that we should somehow sabotage the local economy – the strength of which Lee election win was predicated upon, just so rents might decline some?

          Isn’t that cutting off your nose to spite your face?

        • citizen

          Would it bother you less if Twitter employees lived in San Francisco and took the bus to the office on the Peninsula? I think that it’s obvious that they would be living in San Francisco regardless. I’m really not arguing fairness here, I’m asking pragmatically how you think this would directly affect the housing crisis.

          • John

            He also ignores the fact that far more people commute into SF than commute out of it.

            So if we net out those migrations, SF has too few residents and not too many, and is effectively outsourcing it’s housing crisis to the suburbs.

            So the surrounding counties have more reason to be angry with us for not building enough homes to house our workers, then we can credibly complain about them.

          • nutrisystem

            What would bother me least would be for Twitter to go far away.

            Second best would be for Twitter to provide an attractive housing option for their employees. They have plenty of money to build a big deluxe hotel/resort thing and offer free lodging in it as a perk for their employees. If they did it right, probably >1/2 of their employees would take this option and thus remove much pressure from the city’s existing rental stock.

          • John

            I don’t want homebuilders designing software and I do not want software companies building homes.

          • nutrisystem

            John, the software companies have sufficient moneys to hire excellent architects, contractors and interior designers – the coders won’t need to do it themselves!

            If they were so inclined, the surveillance/advertising corporations could quickly build desirable housing options for their employees.

          • John

            You’re really advocating a special tax on companies in just one business. Sounds discriminatory to me.

            Some businesses, but not many, choose to provide housing. But that’s a Victorian concept that I think people these days are not happy about.

            Nobody wants to live in a work camp, surrounded by the people you see all day long.

          • poor.ass.millionaire

            Nutrisystem, no offense bro, but those ideas are plain nutters!

        • ” unfair special tax breaks” how is that any less fair than ….unfair special below market rent breaks?

          • lol

            yep, better not play the “fairness” card, because this is a massive and messy can of worms that tenant advocates do NOT want to open.

          • nutrisystem

            A tax giveaway to a multibillion dollar company is UNFAIR.

            Protecting full-time workers from getting banished from their home and city is FAIR.

          • John

            Fairness is too tragically subjective a concept to be that helpful here.

            Throwing out successful people so we can have more unsuccessful people is not a really aspirational long-term strategy for a city that has bills to pay.

          • I have a home… my name is on the deed… it is my property and home… if you rent, it’s your rental and temporary, only till the rightful owner wants their property back.

          • lol

            nutrisystem,

            There’s nothing fair in rent control until it becomes means-tested.

            High rents for newcomers are unfair when old timers have voted themselves the low rent.

            This is clearly a “I got mine, you won’t get yours” deal.

  8. sfreality

    Unintended consequences……..tenants and the city think that these proposal are going to help? More LL are going to hold vacant units off the market, more owners are going to sell now than wait for new laws to be past. Until the city or Rent Control addresses 95% of the LL who own 1 to 3 buildings and make it more equitable for them to make money its only going to get worse.

    • John

      When SFMTA make changes they are mostly required to consider the environmental and traffic consequences of the change. They look at what will be the real-world outcomes from the decision and take that into account.

      But when SF passes tenant protections, that stage and type of thinking is strangely omitted. People vote on the emotion and the ideology of it. And punishing a landlord is seem like a sport as if landlords are made of stone, do not react to things, and will always be around to kick.

      The reality is more like you say. Every new tenant “protection” is another nail in the coffin of both existing and future landlords. The protection may protect the odd tenant here and there. But mostly it will drive landlords to ease out of the business, change the use for their buildings, or otherwise just refuse to play the game any more.

      There’s a crisp analysis of why rent control doesn’t work by the Cato Institute (easily googleable) which shows how this trend has happened everywhere in the US that has tried rent control.

      The more the city controls rents and evictions, the less rental units are available, and the higher rents go. It’s as close to a 100% correlation as can be.

      but when the crowd are baying politicians to “do something” in an election year, why would any politicians look beyond November and four more years?

      • lol

        Yes, it is definitely an emotional issue. Then again we are not extremely rational to begin with, living on an earthquake fault and all…

        • poor.ass.millionaire

          Yo, lol, wassup!

          I seen you’ve joined us on the dark side!

          • John

            Eventually all those with a brain develop the maturity to take a more moderate stance. I was a long-haired left-wing liberal arts major when i was twenty, and now I have come to realize that that never works.

            If you are not a liberal at 20, you have no heart. If you are not a conservative at 40, you have no brain. (Churchill, or someone like that).

          • lol

            yup, p.a.m., glad to see you there. Our other venue is a bit too tame these days.

          • poor.ass.millionaire

            John- I think most bay areans prefer: liberal at 20, limousine liberal at 40 :)

            At any rate, conservative is such a harsh word. How about moderate democrat?

            Actually now that things for property owners like us are getting fat again, I can see the appeal of limo- liberal. You’re still well off but can afford to hold perspectives that are technically against your interest. I was always a fan of blatant hypocrisy. It’s subtle hypocrisy that annoys me more. And in actuality, all these nutty new rental restrictions just help those landlords that know how to work with the system. Airbnb, corp rentals, non RC units…there are ways to make it work.

          • poor.ass.millionaire

            Lol- yup, too many douche bag realturds there. Here it’s mostly lefty nutters and a smattering of techies. Welcome!

          • John

            yeah, p.a.m., i’m only conservative on economic issues. I’m all soft and cuddly on social issues.

          • lol

            p.a.m.

            Amazingly enough I think ML gives a better prospective on what the core of the tenant demographic thinks and feels.

            It’s crazy for someone who comes from a place where socialism has been applied to some extent. In the Old Country they know what works and what doesn’t. Rent control, why not, but please allow some turnover by giving the landlord the occasion to press on the reset button. Current rent control laws are creating an ugly confrontational environment.

      • Mark

        The politicians might push this so far that we’ll see a case go to the Supreme Court. It almost happened a few years ago in NYC.

        • They don’t care what really happens, they just have to pander to their voting base the poverty pimps….

          • Mark

            Yes. Almost every local politician owns real estate in this city. They understand that their housing security depends on being a homeowner. Meanwhile they sponsor laws which make it even more difficult to own a home, often in the name of protecting renters.

      • sfreality

        Well said.

      • marcos

        Except that the MTA and Environmental Review Office often cook environmental review. Their record in court is bad so you gotta know that much more crapola got through than was able to be litigated away.

        The proposed Masonic project cuts out a lane of traffic for bike tracks which will slow down the 43 Masonic, but that sailed through ER.

  9. Bob

    Enough of this eviction hysteria. It is not sustainable to keep large portions of the city in $500 rent controlled, landlord subsidized apartments.

  10. Mark

    How about temporarily removing rent control for all new tenancies? Limited to 12 months, and only to units without evictions.

    Housing currently kept off the market would become available almost immediately.

  11. gaston

    Anyone remember the Bierman Amendment of the late 90s? Sponsored by Supe Sue Bierman, it was a similarly cynical piece of political theater designed to curry favor with renters. It put a nearly year-long freeze on OMI evictions for any reason. It was thrown out of State Court but not until after local elections, during which time I paid dot-com era rent AND a mortgage because my family couldn’t move in to the house we bought weeks before the BOS passed Bierman Amendment. Sue, if you’re up there, fuck you.

    The same thing will happen to any proposed amendment to the Ellis Act.

    • John

      Yeah, and I also remember Bierman’s attempt to try and make TIC formations go through the condo conversion process. That got bounced by the courts as well.

      May her bloated corpse rot in hell.

    • poor.ass.millionaire

      There was also a sup, that fat, white bald dude. He tried to outlaw tic’s! Like two or more people are not allowed to do own a bldg together. (WTF is that?) Well his dumb idea was also bounced in appeals court.

      This city has a laundry list of activist laws that can’t stand up in court. Great way to piss people off and waste taxpayers money. It’s why I call it the Bored of Stupidvisors.

  12. ThatGuy

    < 200 evictions is not a crisis people.

    Let's look at real problems.

  13. Luis Martinez

    Put the techies up on a luxury ship anchored offshore and ferry them to work!

    • John

      Luis, if I said put all the Mexicans on an artificial island in the Bay, and bus them into work every day, would you consider that to be prejudicial?

      • Luis Martinez

        It’s all about “corporate housing.” Farm workers are already given the barrack option by their employers; tech workers should be given the cruise ship option by Google, etc. In either case, the impact on the local housing market is minimized.

      • lol

        Discrimination and bigotry only work one way…

    • marcos

      The cruise ship could be a San Francisco themed virtual simulation of the real one, like you’d see in Vegas. They’d not be able to tell the difference.

  14. sjg

    I assume all the proponents of eliminating the evil subsidy known as rent control are absolutely supportive of eliminating Prop 13 (especially for commercial property owners).

    Prop 13 is a subsidy to older home owners paid for by newer home owners.Also, It encourages people to stay in homes and neighborhoods they otherwise could not afford. They would, of course, have to move to more affordable areas, freeing up housing stock.
    In fact all the newer homeowners are benefitting from a subsidy paid for by the next round of home owners.
    I am sure there is overwhelming support from all of you to eliminate this unfair subsidy.

    • John

      Prop13 doesn’t require that one segment of the community subsidizes another segment. Rather it simply caps the amount of tax that can be collected from a given property.

      Rent control has nothing to do with taxes, except that if Prop13 were removed, there would have to be a passthru to tenants of the increase in property taxes, as there is already for parcel taxes.

      So the abolition of Prop13 (which will never happen) would mean huge rent increases. Still want it abolished?

      • sjg

        It absolutely is a subsidy. I say dump it. Especially the give away to commercial property owners. Why should I pay triple for my property that is equally valued to the home next door to me in the Castro

        • John

          It’s only a subsidy if you pay more property tax so that someone else can pay less. That’s the case with rent control but it isn’t the case with Prop13.

          With Prop13 what happens is that less tax is paid by everyone who owns a property. This in turn limits the amount that the State can spend on it’s various pet projects, and that means restraint in State spending which is a good thing.

          Of course, in practice it means that CA just ramps up it’s income and sales taxes – already the highest rates in the nation. But the voters have a limited tolerance for that just like they have already stated a limited tolerance for egregious property taxes.

          Prop 13 was a genuine peoples’ revolution. Rent control is an example of municipal excess and micromanagement.

          • sjg

            God you are exhausting. Fine you win

          • John

            The truth wins, not I.

          • lol

            John, that’s not entirely correct.

            Prop 13 creates an artificial scarcity / turnover and therefore makes RE property more expensive than a less constrained market.

            Granny stays in her 2000sf house, which is fine, but a young couple will have to overbid on a 1000sf place and still have to pay much more than granny in property taxes because of a higher purchase price.

            Without prop 13 granny would have had to downscale and free up some space, which is part of the cycle of life. But nope: we know better than letting things happen than they should because we want to make things more fair.

            And by doing this we are picking winners and losers, which is totally contrary to fairness.

    • Prop 13 is for the WHOLE state. Rent control is just for a few tenant heavy cities and is BANNED from ever happening again by state law . The two do not compare. except to morons.

      • John

        Critics of Prop13 often overlook that property tax revenues have increased by an average annual rate of 7% since it passed.

        That really should be an adequate rate of revenue increase for any State that practices reasonable restraints and has basic fiscal controls in place.

        • sjg

          Whatever John, you truly just suck the life out of any conversation. It just becomes this endless loop of “Tastes great..Less filling” arguments.
          If someone says the sky is blue, you will come up with ten reasons why it’s purple. Thanks for reminding me why I always regret posting anything.

          • John

            I guess it’s annoying when someone posts facts that you cannot counter. Sorry for the offence.

          • poor.ass.millionaire

            Look douche, you can’t compare rent control to prop 13. First, an owner should have more rights and entitlements than a mere renter. That’s right, there is a difference. Second, prop 13 is statewide, and is not a taking from one set of citizens to give privilege to another. Third, the state imposes taxes in other ways, that effect all citizens like sales tax, which are inherently more fair. Fourth, sure, let’s drop prop 13 BUT ALSO institute a tax on renters. How bout that! Tired of douche bag renters milking the system and propping up the “only in SF” Rent Control Industrial Complex, the subject of this article.

    • lol

      I am against rent control, and I am against prop 13. Time to bring reason into the balance.

  15. gcan

    The constant tightening of rent control is the taking of property rights through a subtle form of eminent domain and property owners are not being compensated for their reduction of property rights.

    • nutrisystem

      I’d like to run a stinky fish rendering factory on my property, right here in the middle of the city.

      Is that OK with you?

      What? You’re concerned it will have a negative impact on the community? You’re claiming government has the right to reduce the value of my property by forbidding this profitable fish rendering use??!!

      But it’s my property and I’ve got PROPERTY RIGHTS! I want to be COMPENSATED!

      • John

        The fact that some public health regulations may be prudent does not entail that any and all regulations are desirable.

        And especially when those regulations are a poorly thought out attempt at social engineering.

      • lol

        Comparing rent control with stinking fish works really well. Both are nasty and undesirable.

  16. A deed with your name on it gives you more rights to decide the use of property, just like a marriage license gives you more claim to your spouse than that whore down on the corner under the street light ….

    • landline

      Women aren’t property. I’ve seen you use this detestable analogy twice (along with at least once boasting of bedding drug-addicted sex workers before their health and appearance deteriorated beneath your standards).

  17. NFS

    Newton’s third law: When one body exerts a force on a second body, the second body simultaneously exerts a force equal in magnitude and opposite in direction on the first body.

    Surprised this has yet to happen.

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