Recent Developments in Landlord/Tenant Law


* Ellis Relocation Payments Likely To Increase Soon - S.F. Board of Supervisors to vote on proposal by Supervisor David Campos which would substantially alter the way Ellis relocation payments are calculated. [March 2014]

* Sunday Opens - This hotly-contested issue has finally been decided. Landlords and their real estate agents are entitled to hold open houses on weekends. See Dromy v. Lukovsky (2013) 219 Cal.App.4th 278.

* Right To Reoccupy After Fire or Disaster - If a tenant is forced to vacate her/his unit due to fire or other disaster, the landlord shall, within 30 days of completion of repairs to the unit, offer the same unit to that tenant under the same terms and conditions as existed prior to her/his displacement. Rent Board Rule 12.19 [September 2013]

* S.F. Subdivision Code ยง 1396.4 - Most tenants of condo-converted buildings are entitled to a rent-stabilized lifetime lease or to purchase their unit. These are valuable new tenant rights! [June 2013]

* Civil Code § 1946.1 - has been made permanent. This law requires that in order to terminate a residential tenancy of one year or more, the owner must provide the tenant with at least 60 days written notice. Only 30 days notice is required if the tenant has lived in the property for less than one year. Tenants may terminate by giving written notice “for as long as the period of the tenancy prior to the date of proposed termination.”

* Protecting Tenants At Foreclosure Act - effective nationwide, purchasers at a foreclosure sale who want to evict a bona fide residential tenant must provide the tenant with at least 90 days notice. If the bona fide tenant resided in the premises under a lease, the foreclosure purchaser must honor the lease, unless the purchaser intends to occupy the unit as a primary residence.

* SB 1137 – tenant or subtenant in possession of a rental housing unit that has been sold through foreclosure is entitled to a 60-day written notice to quit, not just 30 days. [C.C.P. § 1161b] This new law does not affect rent-controlled tenancies where the tenants are entitled to keep renting on the same terms as before and the foreclosure purchaser cannot evict without “just cause.”

Under this new law the lender, trustee, or authorized agent posting a notice of foreclosure sale must also post and mail notice of the tenant's right to a 60-day eviction notice from the new owner. This requirement to notify tenants of their rights applies to loans secured by residential real property where the borrower has a billing address other than the subject property.