Written by Sid Lakireddy

We defeated it then and we’re going to defeat it in 2020. It’s official – Weinstein’s Redux Ballot Initiative is back after getting approved this week by Secretary of State’s office. Slowly but surely supporters of the initiative will begin to rally throughout the state, which is why we have reassembled our coalition that needs to be louder and more sensible than our opponents’ movement.

What makes us unique is our on-the-ground, hands-on experience in the rental housing industry. We know what it’s like to experience the consequences of these laws first-hand, not just on our business but on the renters too.

It is up to us to tell the story of the small property owner. It is up to us and us alone to gather all momentum possible to grow quickly before November. While the media continues to focus on the opposition and compare us to big corporate developers, and legislators continue to be swayed by what’s politically popular, we need to uplift each other to showcase what we value.

As you may have seen, the building trades have come out in opposition to the initiative and we suspect that more non-property owner groups will join us in fighting this. We understand that it does not makes sense to apply rent control, a known deterrent of development of new housing, when the state is facing a critical housing shortage.

Where we are now, California should be producing 200,000 housing units per year. We are underperforming and producing about 100,000 per year. The destructive statewide rent control that the measure would implement would pause construction for more housing.

While we keep our eyes on the big battle, there are other local issues bubbling up to the surface.

In Los Angeles, a councilmember is proposing seizing private property to stop the increase of rental costs on hundreds of units to meet market rate. Decades ago, the City of Los Angeles agreed to help fund the project in partnership with the property owner so long as rental costs remained the same for a certain amount of years. Now that the contract has expired and the property owner plans to raise the rent to meet the market rate, the councilmember proposed to seize the property against the property owner’s wishes to keep rental costs as is.

Although this may not appear to be threatening to all property owners, it could inspire legislation elsewhere and even statewide legislation in the future. We have to keep an eye out for each other, and monitor situations like these constantly.

We are here to advocate for you, and want to do everything we can to serve you well. Small rental property owners are here to help California understand our viewpoint on the state’s housing crisis. Not all property owners are big corporations – some are small, independent business owners depending on their business to meet
everyday essentials.

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