Our fourth post on California’s new Tenant Protection Act of 2019 captures Paul Getty’s recommendations on what landlords should be doing to prepare themselves to meet the requirements of this legislation.
Q. How should landlords prepare for complying with ALL the requirements of AB 1482?
A. That’s an important question. Over the last several months since this legislation has come into public view, we’ve spoken to hundreds of landlords in our day-to-day interactions with our clients, and with other landlords who’ve attended our educational seminars, and I would say that less than 10% of those people we’ve interfaced with understand the depth of these requirements in 1482.
Now, many of these folks own single-family rental properties, which as mentioned before, are for the most part excluded from this provision, but anyone who owns property as a landlord in California needs to see a clear path that the state is on right now that may make their lives more difficult in time. They may be exempted today, but tomorrow that could change. The AB 1482 legislation came about by surprise to many. There wasn’t a lot of fanfare, not a lot of warning, and it came to life very quickly in terms of its passage at the state level.
So, there are three things we’re advocating that landlords do. Anybody who owns investment property in California, needs to ramp up their knowledge and awareness of the changes that are occurring. And these changes are occurring week by week now; the pace is accelerating.
The first thing we recommend is that landlords join and become active in the California Apartment Owners Association (CAA) if they haven’t already done so. CAA is a major force in the state. It’s a private group, comprised largely of landlords and service providers. This is a group that not only serves as an important lobbyist in helping express landlords’ points of view to the state legislature, but it also does a great job with their website email communications and blogs to highlight the most current regulatory changes and to keep members informed. So, that’s the first thing we recommend; joining the CAA. Also, if you have signed up for our blog subscription, we encourage you to do so. We provide a consistent flow of blog content designed to keep landlords updated on the many of the newest pieces of legislation.
The second thing we recommend, unfortunately, is that landlords be prepared to seek legal advice. That advice comes in two categories. One is if they are having issues with tenants and they need to consider eviction proceedings. They need to reach out to attorneys who specialize in eviction. This is a discreet and specialized type of practice and there are several attorneys throughout the state who represent landlords specifically when there is a requirement to pursue eviction. The second area requiring legal expertise relates to what’s referred to as “landlord’s rights.” An example would be a tenant making a claim that the landlord is not managing the property to their liking and they suffered some type of harm as a result of that. Attorneys who specialize in this area can play an important role in protecting landlords. We know and work with many attorneys in each area of specialization and can provide recommendations if you need assistance.
The third thing we encourage landlords to consider relates to options they have in selling their property and reinvesting somewhere else; what you might think of as the “get out of Dodge” approach. The thought is, as a landlord, you’ve owned investment property in the state of California for quite some time and your property has appreciated significantly in value. You see a horizon ahead of you of more regulation, more rent control and, frankly, more risk. For landlords with this mindset – and we’re seeing an increasing number of individuals in this category – the concept of selling their property now and reinvesting in more landlord-friendly areas in the United States, is very appealing. At the extreme, California is on one side of what would be considered an anti-landlord environment, with states like Texas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia the Carolinas and others being very landlord friendly.
If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to Paul directly at 866-398-1031 or schedule some time on Paul’s calendar.
Want to learn more? Download our latest eBook, California's AB 1482 Rent Control Law & Investment Options for Sellers.