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  • Si tiene alguna pregunta, por favor llame a la Agencia de Control de Rentas al (310)458-8751 y pida hablar con un analista que habla español.


    News and Announcements

    Upcoming Seminar: Owning Rent-Controlled Property in Santa Monica

    March_2019_Seminar_FlyerOur annual seminar tailored to owners of rent-controlled property in Santa Monica is coming up Wednesday, March 6th. In the past year, the Rent Control Board passed several new regulations that all rental property owners and managers need to know about. Whether you are a seasoned landlord or new to Santa Monica, this seminar will give you an overview of the rent control law including all of the new regulations, as well as how the law affects rents, amenities, maintenance, eviction limitations, and restrictions on change of use. You will also learn the services available through the Rent Control office. Anyone interested in learning more about rent control is welcome. The event will be held in the 2nd Floor Multipurpose Room at the Main Public Library from 9:30am to noon. Please register in advance by emailing us at rentcontrol@smgov.net or by calling us at 310-458-8751.


    Maintenance Seminar and Landlord-Tenant Forum Videos Now Online


    2018_Forum_PhotoDid you miss one of our recent seminars? Both the Rental Property Maintenance Seminar, co-presented with staff of the City’s Code Enforcement Division, and the Landlord-Tenant Forum, co-presented with the City Attorney’s Office, were recorded by CityTV and are available on our Seminars page. The Maintenance Seminar video will give you a broad understanding of what must be maintained under the rent control law and municipal code and the remedies available when there is a lack of maintenance. The Landlord-Tenant Forum video will keep you up to date with the latest regulations regarding the limitation on pass-through of property-tax-related surcharges, buyout offers, eviction protections, and tenant harassment, among other subjects. There is also a lengthy question and answer session at the end covering a variety of topics. Each video is indexed to allow you to skip to the sections of greatest interest to you.
     

    Fall Rent Control News Sent to Tenants and Landlords2018_Fall_Newsletter

    Newsletters were mailed to all rent-controlled units and their owners on December 7th and should have arrived in your mailbox by now. As always, the newsletter has useful information to keep in mind to ensure compliance with the law and avoid pitfalls. Each tenant can also check the Maximum Allowable Rent for their unit, which is printed on the inside flap. The fall issue includes important information on new eviction protection for educators and students during the school year, more about the Rent Control Information Sheet that must be given to tenants when leases are signed, and limits on pass-through of property-tax-related surcharges, among other news. To view the newsletter online, click here.
     

    Property-Tax-Related Surcharges

    In some instances, in addition to the MAR and one-half of the Rent Control registration fee, owners may charge tenants a pro rata (proportionate) share of some of the property taxes they pay. The surcharges are limited to five line-items on the owner's property tax bill which result from ballot measures approved by Santa Monica voters in prior elections. Surcharges may be passed-through if all the following are true:

    • The tenancy began before March 1, 2018;
    • The property value was not reassessed on or after March 1, 2018 due to a sale or voluntary improvements, and;
    • The owner properly noticed the tenant which includes providing a copy of the property tax bill to the tenant - unless the only tax being passed through is the School District Parcel Tax (see below).

    IMPORTANT! If the property value is reassessed on or after March 1, 2018 due to a sale or voluntary improvements, the owner may no longer pass through these property-tax-related surcharges to any tenant.

    The five line-items below may be passed through if the conditions above are true:
    • Community College Bond
    • Unified Schools Bond
    • Stormwater Management User Fee
    • Clean Beaches and Ocean Parcel Tax
    • School District Special Tax
    Click here for more information on surcharges and related rent control regulations.
     

    Owners Must Disclose Tenant Rights Prior to Making Buyout Offers and Submit Agreements to Rent Control

    In Santa Monica, landlords and their agents are required to give tenants a notice of certain rights before offering any form of compensation in exchange for a tenant's agreement to voluntarily vacate a controlled rental unit. The Notice of a Tenant's Rights with Respect to a Buyout Offer is available at the Board's office and here. Landlords are required to file copies of all buyout agreements with the Rent Control Board no sooner than 31 days, and no later than 60 days, after the agreement has been signed by all parties. If a landlord fails to follow these requirements, a tenant may cancel the buyout agreement.

    Tenants are under no obligation to accept buyout offers and should realistically evaluate whether any amount offered is sufficient to make up for the loss of a controlled rental unit. Additional information about buyouts and average amounts of buyout agreements filed with Rent Control since 2015 are available here by year, city area and unit size. You can also download a full spreadsheet of recorded buyout agreements.

     

    OWNERS: Register New Tenancies Online

    Property owners and their authorized agents may now file Tenancy Registration forms online. No longer are owners required to bring or mail paper forms to the Rent Control office each time a new tenancy is registered. Instead, owners may register new tenancies right from this website. Forms are submitted electronically, and when they are received, we'll send confirmation by email. No more guessing if we received the form. Online filing saves postage, paper and time. Visit our Registering New Tenants and Amenities page for more information.

    Owners Must Provide Rent Control Info Sheet to All New Tenants

    Recognizing that knowledge may lead to more effective communications, the Rent Control Board recently adopted a regulation requiring that for all tenancies starting on or after July 31, 2017, landlords must give new tenants a Board-produced information sheet about the Rent Control Law at the time of lease signing.

    The single-sheet document contains rent control basics including information about rent levels and rent increases, eviction protections, maintenance and repairs, and base amenities. It also includes information on other important issues affecting Santa Monica tenants and landlords such as home-sharing, smoking restrictions, harassment, and construction work in occupied buildings. Tenants are encouraged to acknowledge receipt of the information sheet by signing and dating the form. If a landlord fails to provide the information sheet to a tenant at the beginning of a tenancy, the landlord will not be able to implement the general adjustment for the unit until they comply with the requirement.

    The information sheet can be downloaded here, but it will also be mailed to all landlords at the end of June. Additional copies can be picked up at the Rent Control Office in Room 202 of City Hall.


    Electronic Communications Sign-Up

    In keeping with the goals of a sustainable Santa Monica, the Rent Control Agency is giving people who receive communications from the Agency the option of having future communications that are available electronically delivered by email. To sign up to receive Rent Control communications electronically, click here.
     
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