Posts Tagged ‘rent control’

Trouble for “SOMA SUITES HOTEL” – Rent Controlled Units Leased to Tourists? – City Attorney Dennis Herrera v. Angelo Sangiacomo

Thursday, August 6th, 2015

Just released by the City Attorney’s Office

“Herrera demands answers from Trinity Place on tourist uses of rent-controlled dwellings – Investigation finds evidence that nearly two-dozen residential apartments—including 16 rent-controlled units—were apparently leased to tourists as ‘SOMA Suites Hotel’

SAN FRANCISCO (Aug. 6, 2015)—A major residential development project, hailed as “the Miracle of Mission Street” for overcoming years of opposition with promised benefits including 360 new apartments designated as rent-controlled, is facing scrutiny over apparently unlawful uses of residential dwellings for short-term tourist accommodations. City Attorney Dennis Herrera publicly acknowledged his office’s investigation into the potentially unlawful and unauthorized uses at 1188 and 1190 Mission Street in a letter delivered yesterday to Trinity Place developer Angelo Sangiacomo and counsel.

According to the letter, Herrera’s investigation found that at least 16 rent-controlled apartments, all intended as replacement units for residents at 1188 Mission Street, were instead leased to a single individual for the apparent purpose of marketing them as short-term tourist rentals. Another seven apartments in neighboring 1190 Mission Street were similarly leased to the same person for concurrent and overlapping periods, with evidence indicating those units were also then rented to tourists for short-term stays. Although apartments at 1190 Mission Street are not subject to rent-control, the required use of dwellings in both buildings is residential housing, under terms of the 2007 development agreement between Sangiacomo and the City and related City approvals.

The findings corroborate other evidence Herrera identified in his office’s investigation that Trinity Place dwellings have been marketed for transient occupancy as “The SOMA Suites Hotel,” an unincorporated and apparently unregistered entity that identifies its location to prospective hotel guests as 1188 Mission Street in San Francisco.

“For those of us who worked on the agreement, the full promise of Trinity Place wasn’t solely about 1,900 units of badly needed housing,” Herrera said. “It was also about proving that developers, city officials and the community could resolve differences creatively, and rise to the challenge of our housing shortage. What makes this apparent misuse so disappointing is that it betrays that promise on both counts. The conduct, if it is what it appears to be, reduces the number of apartments that should rightfully be available to San Francisco renters, and they undermine the trust necessary to make similar progress in the future. It’s my hope that Mr. Sangiacomo will appreciate the seriousness of this apparent wrongdoing. I hope, too, that he will cooperate with our investigation, and fully remedy all violations that may have occurred to restore the good faith and trust that made this project possible.”

Herrera’s letter requests the full cooperation of Sangiacomo and his agents in his office’s investigation, to thoroughly account for the uses of the rent controlled units and other residential units authorized under the Trinity Place development agreement since its execution. The letter specifically requests documents, contracts, leases and other information detailing financial relationships among Sangiacomo’s business interests and individuals and companies identified in Herrera’s investigation that appear to be involved in the short term rental violations.”

But What’s The Rent? – A 65 Square-Foot Studio Trailer Gets Parked on Market, to “Activate” the “Street Scene”

Friday, July 10th, 2015

This is what it looks like:

Studio-1a

Sam Whiting explains here in the San Francisco Chronicle:

Art studio on wheels moves down Market Street

Mmmm, no comments? Perhaps this attempt at a paywall is working too well.

But all right, here’s the SFGate version – surely the rabble will chirp up with comments like, “Well, what’s the rent?” Or maybe, “Smallest Studio in the Twitterloin, 0 bdrms, o bths, reclaimed wood?” 

Art studio on wheels moves down Market Street

Nope. Just one comment. This is the least amount of NEMA-mocking I’ve ever seen, when the topic of the NEMA is raised:

“So, if Studio One were to break down, would it be NEMA-towed?”

Get it? Nematode – cause like “worms,” right? (Oh, I don’t get it, oh well.)

Hey, speaking of NeMA, there’s still no rent control there, so giant rent hikes are coming your way. It will happen like this:

“We looked at what we’re charging for new rents and what the rent trends are in the market. We came up with the following renewal offer by lease terms…”

And then BAM! You get hit with a 24% (or whatever) rent increase (on top of an already high rent) after just one year. Speaking of which, here’s what one Yelper recently had to say about the NEMA. So many details!

I’ll tell you, lots of SF newcomers move into buildings without knowing that rent control won’t apply to them. And they don’t know the first thing about rental deposit refunds until they hit for charges that they don’t have to pay and that they shouldn’t pay. IMO.

And I’ll tell you, I don’t work for SFGov, so it’s not my job to “activate” the “New Market” “Streetscape” with umpty-up art displays. IMO. SFGov should focus on the basics.

JMO

The San Francisco Chronicle’s CW Nevius Pushes Advocacy Journalism Beyond Its Limits: Rent Control en la Mision

Monday, February 9th, 2015

Is this bit here from CW Nevius at all persuasive to you? It’s not to me. And probably it’s not to most people.

And you know, there’s not a whole bunch of “tenant activists” in the bay area either. Yet CW seems to think the world is divided into two sections:

1. Right-thinking, right-side-of-the-aisle activist people such as himself; and

2. Tenant activists

But IRL, most people aren’t activists.

And the reason why it seems that CW Nevius works hand-in-hand with local pols who despise rent control is that CW Nevius actually is working hand-in-hand with local pols who despise rent control. Except CW doesn’t have to worry about losing future elections, so he’s free to speak out on behalf those pols who are terrified of being depicted as anti-rent control. So that’s your symbiotic relationship. I’m unaware of anybody else at the SF Chronicle who has this kind of relationship with local pols. I’m saying, from an outsider’s perspective, the writings of CW Nevius really stand out. He’s an outlier.

Leave us begin:

Through no fault of their own, the married couple has been displaced from their Mission District home by tenants who refuse to move unless they receive a payment of well over $100,000.

UH, NO THEY WEREN’T “DISPLACED.” WHAT HAPPENED WAS THEY MOVED OVERSEAS AND THEN RENTED OUT THEIR PART OF A TIC TO A COUPLE OF TENANTS IN A RENT-CONTROLLED CITY. THE OBVIOUS SOLUTION IS AN OMI PROCEEDING. SO, IN FACT, THEY CAN MOVE BACK “HOME.”

…an eviction would violate the terms of a TIC-to-condo conversion ordinance and they — and the other two co-owners of their building — would never be able to convert their tenancy-in-common unit to a condominium.

TICs AREN’T FOR EVERYBODY, RIGHT? LOTS OF THINGS CAN GO WRONG WITH A TIC, RIGHT?

“We may lose control of our home for the rest of our lives,” Rumpler said. “They must have been instructed that they are sitting on a gold mine. They’re dug in, and we’re stuck.”

AGAIN, YOU DO AN OMI OR YOU DON’T DO AN OMI – CALLING UP CW NEVIUS ISN’T GOING TO HELP WITH THIS SITUATION.

When the condo conversion ordinance was passed in June 2013, it seemed like relief for thousands of San Franciscans.

THOUSANDS OF WEALTHY SAN FRANCISCANS WHO WERE TAKING A CHANCE ON AN INHERENTLY RISKY TIC INVESTMENT, RIGHT?

They were buyers who purchased tenancy-in-common units and then spent years on a waiting list, hoping to be one of 200 chosen in the conversion lottery each year.

HOW IS THIS NOT LIKE ROULETTE?

“In this case the tenants were able to take advantage of the rules that were probably not designed to work this way,” Meirson said.

THIS IS RENT CONTROL IN ACTION. THE RULES WERE EXACTLY DESIGNED TO WORK THIS WAY. EXACTLY.

“It is a very real possibility that these tenants will remain with a lifetime lease and the owners may never be able to move back home. Is this what the law was meant to do?”

THIS IS RENT CONTROL IN ACTION. THE RULES WERE EXACTLY DESIGNED TO WORK THIS WAY. EXACTLY.

The irony, of course, is that if the roles were reversed and an older, married gay couple — one of whom has ALS — were being asked to leave a rental unit…

WHOA NELLIE! THE NEVIUSNESS OF THIS SENTENCE IS QUITE HIGH ALREADY, SO LET’S SLOW THINGS DOWN HERE. ALL RIGHT, IS IT REALLY A SMART IDEA TO “ASK” A TENANT TO LEAVE A RENT CONTROLLED UNIT? I SURE AS HECK DON’T THINK SO. THERE ARE POTENTIAL LEGAL IMPLICATIONS OF DOING THAT, RIGHT? WE’RE NOT TALKING ABOUT WALNUT CREEK HERE, RIGHT? WE’RE TALKING SAN FRANCISCO, HOME OF SOME OF THE MOST EXTREME PRO-TENANT LAWS IN AMERICA, RIGHT? SO, IF YOU’RE NOT CUT OUT TO BE A SAN FRANCISCO LANDLORD, WHY WOULD YOU PICK THIS PLACE, OF ALL PLACES, TO BECOME A LANDLORD? AND WHATEVER YOU DO, DON’T TAKE LANDLORD-TENANT ADVICE FROM CW NEVIUS, THE SAN FRANCISCO NEWCOMER STRAIGHT OUTTA THE 925.

…by a young, financially well-off couple in their 20s, there would be an uproar from tenant advocates.

WELL, NUMBER ONE, THERE WOULDN’T BE AN UPROAR. AND NUMBER TWO, WHERE DOES THE “OF COURSE” COME FROM, WHERE’S THE “IRONY?” THIS IS RENT CONTROL IN ACTION. IT SOUNDS LIKE CW NEVIUS DOESN’T LIKE SF RENT CONTROL.

Instead, this turns the whole scenario on its head.

I’M STRUGGLING TO UNDERSTAND HERE. IT WOULD BE NICE IF CW NEVIUS COULD FIND HIS WAY DOWN TO THE RENT BOARD TO SEE HOW THE RULES WORK IN HIS NEW-FOUND HOME. I DON’T THINK HE UNDERSTANDS.

The tenants, who declined to be interviewed, are in their early 20s and hardly impoverished. Rumpler says both of them work in the tech industry.

HERE’S A NEWS FLASH FOR CW NEVIUS: RENT CONTROL ISN’T MEANS-TESTED IN SF. IMPOVERISHMENT ISN’T A FACTOR. WHAT INDUSTRY THE TENANTS WORK IN IS NOT A FACTOR.

“My understanding is that they work in a high-income profession,” said Meirson. “They probably make more than the landlords in this case.”

OH “PROBABLY.” AND THEY PROBABLY HAVE LESS WEALTH TOO, RIGHT? I’M FAILING TO SEE HOW THIS ISN’T A RUN-OF THE-MILL RENT CONTROL SITUATION, SIMILAR TO OVER 100,000 OTHERS IN SF.

“We would be very happy to settle with them for a reasonable amount of money. We said, ‘We can give you $25,000 and they said, ‘Not even close.’”

ALL RIGHT, $25K. LET’S REMEMBER THIS FIGURE.

The quirky part of this story is that Rumpler and Scovern are victims of bad timing.

TIMING IS EVERYTHING IN REAL ESTATE, RIGHT? BUYING A TIC HOPING TO “WIN” A “LOTTERY” WHEN THE RULES ARE NOT AT ALL STABLE IS EXPOSING YOURSELF TO POLITICAL RISK, RIGHT?

When Scovern got a short-term job offer in Melbourne, Australia, in September 2012, Rumpler says they “pretty naively entered into the rental market.”

“NAIVELY?” DING DING DING DING DING DING! AND HEY, SPEAKING OF SCOVERN, GUESS WHO HAS AN INDUSTRIAL ENGINEERING DEGREE? SO NEVIUS RELIES ON A SECOND-HAND SOURCE FOR THE OCCUPATIONS OF THE TENANTS, BUT IGNORES THE “TECHIE” LANDLORD IN THIS CASE. THAT’S SO RAVEN NEVIUS!

They used a rental agent to find tenants, with the idea that they’d be back in two years.

IN A RENT-CONTROLLED UNIT. SOUNDS LIKE A BAD IDEA.

Because they are less expensive than an outright condo purchase, they have been a gateway to ownership in a city where housing is incredibly expensive.

TICS HAVE A LOT OF BAD ASPECTS. IS OWNERSHIP SUCH A GOOD IDEA IN SF? IT WORKS OUT FOR MOST PEOPLE, BUT THERE ARE RISKS. ALTERNATIVES INCLUDE DALY CITY AND … WALNUT CREEK. SRSLY.

At this point the two sides are at stalemate.

I DON’T KNOW WHAT THIS MEANS. IF THIS LL/TENANT COMBO IS AT STALEMATE, THEN SO ARE MOST LL/TENANT COMBOS IN SF. WHAT MAKES THIS UNIT SPECIAL?

Rumpler says the first suggestion by the tenants for a payout to move was based on the idea that they would have to pay an additional $1,500 a month for 10 years. That’s $18,000 a year for a total of $180,000. “It might as well have been a million,” Rumpler said. “We’re not paying the ransom.”

SO YOU’RE WILLING TO PAY $25K IN RANSOM BUT NOT $180K IN RANSOM BUT THE $25K ISN’T RANSOM? MMMM…

WHAT NEVIUS DOESN’T SHARE WITH HIS READERS IS THE DOLLAR AMOUNT SPENT FOR THE TIC AND THE VALUE OF IT NOW AND ALSO THE VALUE OF IT AFTER CONDO CONVERSION. THESE NUMBERS ARE PRETTY KNOWABLE BUT THEY MIGHT TURN OFF SOME OF THE READERS THAT NEVIUS IS TRYING, FOR SOME REASON, TO PERSUADE.

AND YOU KNOW, SOME PEOPLE BOUGHT REAL ESTATE IN 2006, AND, “THROUGH NO FAULT OF THEIR OWN,” ENDED UP UNDERWATER. WHERE’S THEIR NEVIUS COLUMN?

IF I WERE THE NEVIUS, I WOULD HAVE GIVEN UP ON THIS STORY.

SOME FISH YOU SHOULD JUST THROW BACK.

Advice for San Francisco Newcomers: What’s “Rent Control?” It’s Something You Might Want – Not Now, But Next Year

Friday, January 2nd, 2015

Or not. It’s hard to say how much rent control would benefit you next year once your lease is up.

But these days, there’s a ton of SF newcomers who are just figuring out the big benefit of RC.

Check it:

“Unfortunately most residents can’t afford to stay longer that 1 year. We’ve been living at Argenta for 10 months and have been very happy with the apartment. But we began to suspect that things weren’t quite right with management shortly after moving in. People we met in the elevator, lobby and our floor were all saying the same thing — rent had been raised to ridiculous heights and they were moving out. Over the last 10 months we have watched many of the tenants on our floor leave because of the rent increase.”

So that’s what you get with your brand-new building – a huge rent increase after your first year.

Generally speaking, older buildings have rent control and newer buildings do not. One exception is federal land, like Treasure Island and The Presidio. In those places, you can live in an older building but still get with huge rent increases.

Of course, it always pays to check.

Here’s a test – can you tell which places are rent controlled?

7J7C0731 copy

You see, it’s hard.

Choose wisely.

ATTENTION RESIDENTS OF THE NEW “NEMA” BUILDING: A Massive Rent Increase is Coming Your Way – ‘Cause No Rent Control

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

But don’t take my word for it, listen to one of your neighbors at 8 Tenth Street, 94103, via the Yelp:

“Please read this if you are considering any non-rent control building in San Francisco. I wish someone had told me this when I moved to the city and chose Nema. Please consider this advice.

If you have visited Nema, you probably can tell that the management, amenities and staff are outstanding. You may also notice that everyone living in the building has just moved from another city or state. Here’s why:

UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES should you rent in a non-rent control building, unless you can sign a multi-year lease. Could you afford a double digit rent increase? 50% rent increase? Is your income doubling next year? It seems far away now, but you will probably want to renew your lease. Now is the time to make a good decision about housing, not next year because you will be paying much more then.”

So basically, buildings built AFTER rent control came to San Francisco in 1979 don’t have no rent control. (The relevant date is printed on your landlord’s Occupancy Permit, but if your crib went up in 1980 or later, don’t even bother checking.)

That means that your friends renting units in older buildings will face a maximum annual rent increase limited to 60% of a certain Cost of Living Index dealing with the Bay Area. That means one-something percent per year.

OTOH, if you moved into the NeMA at $1950 per month last year (as some did, 2nd or 3rd floor, lousy view* – Unit 324, for example**) and your lease is coming up, consider that there are no units available now for less than $2800 (I’m srsly – some studios go for $4000+)

Are you, the NeMA renter, looking at a 40% rent increase soon? 

If not this year, what about the next year too? How long will it take to have a 40% increase for your unit, you know, cumulatively?

Sooner than you think Auslander.

Sooner than you think, Outlander.

Why don’t websites aimed at tourists and newcomers tell you this? Well, because they’re on the take from … The NEMA!

I assign this story to the San Francisco Chronicle – this one writes itself. (This would be a good CW Nevius, I’m seriously.)

*Compared with the rest of the units in the Nema.

**This was not a BMR (Below Market Rate) unit reserved for those people making less than $38,000 per year, no no. Those places went for around $950 per month. I’m talking about market rate units back when market rate was $1950 per month for the least desirable apartments at NeMA – that was all the way back in 2013. 

Sympathy for the Landlord Who Inherited the Apartment You Rent: Writer CW Nevius Cries a River over Rent Control

Thursday, October 30th, 2014

HERE ARE JUST TEN OR SO THINGS WRONG WITH THE LATEST EFFORT FROM CW NEVIUS:

“Real estate attorney Elizabeth Erhardt has an incredibly unpopular outlook. She’s sympathetic to San Francisco landlords. And before being drowned out by a chorus of boos and hisses…”

THIS MIGHT COME AS A SURPRISE TO THE NEVIUS, BUT THIS “OUTLOOK” IS NOT “INCREDIBLY UNPOPULAR.” HOW ABOUT SOMEWHAT UNPOPULAR, YOU KNOW, INSTEAD?  STRIKE ONE

“They inherited a…. It’s her sole source of income.”

SO NEVIUS, YOU COULDN’T FIND ANY RICH SAN FRANCISCO LANDOWNER WHO DIDN’T INHERIT PROPERTY? EVERYBODY YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT HERE GOT THEIR LAND FOR FREE WITH A STEPPED-UP BASIS, AND AT LEAST ONE IS LANDED GENTRY WITHOUT A J-O-B? WHAT IS THIS, ANOTHER EPISODE OF DOWNTON ABBEY? IT’S HARD OUT HERE FOR A PIMP (LAND)LORD? DON’T YOU SEE THIS AS A PROBLEM FOR YOUR HARD-LUCK LANDLORD STORIES HERE? STRIKE TWO

“Oh come on, you say. Subletting without the landlord’s permission is illegal. Just toss them out.”

FIRST OF ALL NEVIUS, SUBLETTING WITHOUT THE LANDLORD’S PERMISSION ISN’T “ILLEGAL.” STRIKE THREE. AND SECOND OF ALL, WITHOUT REALIZING IT, YOU’RE CALLING INTO QUESTION THE MANAGEMENT SKILLZ OF THE OWNERS. OF COURSE MOST OF THESE ISSUES ARE WORKED OUT AT THE SF RENT BOARD, BUT YOU DON’T WANT TO TALK ABOUT THAT, OK FINE. BUT, FOR THAT, STRIKE FOUR.

“Erhardt says she had a case where the original tenant was paying $19 a month for his apartment because he’d installed sub-leasers to pay most of the way.”

SO FINE, TAKE IT TO THE RENT BOARD – WHAT’S THE PROBLEM HERE? PROVE UP YOUR CASE AND YOU’LL WIN, EASY-PEASY. AWWWW, THAT’S TOO HARD FOR YOU, YOU DON’T HAVE STOMACH TO MAKE MONEY OFF OF LANDLORDING IN SF? WELL, WHO PROMISED YOU, THE INHERITOR, THAT IT WOULD BE EASY, WHO PROMISED YOU A ROSE GARDEN? WHY NOT INSTEAD JUST SELL THE PROPERTY AND ENJOY YOUR UNEARNED INCOME? FOR NOT STATING THE OBVIOUS, THAT’S STRIKE FIVE FOR THE NEVIUS.

Critics say these are just a few anecdotal examples. 

WHO THE FUCK ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT, NEVIUS? WHO ACTUALLY SAID THIS? AND HOW MANY THOUSANDS OF  STRAW DOGS HAVE YOU BIRTHED OVER THE YEARS, YOU LAZY WRITER, CW NEVIUS? STRIKE SIX. (LET’S BRING OUT THE “T”)

“…poperty owners.”

HEY NEVIUS, YOU DON’T HAVE AN EDITOR, HUH? I KNOW THAT BECAUSE OF TEH TYPOS. AND THAT’S NOT A PROBLEM IN ITSELF, BUT AN EDITOR WOULD PREVENT YOU FROM SAYING STUFF LIKE HOW NOT GETTING A LANDLORD’S PERMISSION TO DO SOMETHING IS “ILLEGAL.” WHAT YOU NEED IS SOMEBODY TO GO THROUGH ALL YOUR SENTENCES AND THEN SAY, “NOW IS THIS ACTUALLY TRUE?” SO YEAH, SURE, YOU CAN FIX THE TYPOS, BUT WHAT ABOUT EVERYTHING ELSE, WHAT ABOUT ALL THE ERRORS WHAT _AREN’T_ TYPOS? STRIKE SEVEN

A simple concept, rent-controlled apartments for those who need a financial break, has become as Byzantine as the tax code.

WELL, LET’S SEE HERE. NUMBER ONE, SF RENT CONTROL IS NOT “AS BYZANTINE AS OUR TAX CODE,” NOT BY A LONG SHOT. FOUL TIP. NUMBER TWO, RENT CONTROL WAS MEANT FOR EVERYONE, NOT JUST “THOSE WHO NEED A FINANCIAL BREAK.” RIGHT? ‘CAUSE OTHERWISE IT WOULD HAVE BEEN MEANS-TESTED, RIGHT? IN THAT WAY, IT’S SIMILAR TO PROP 13, RIGHT? HEY NEVIUS, DO YOU PROPOSE MEANS-TESTING PROP  13? OH YOU DON’T? MMMM… AND HEY, AREN’T YOU A SAN FRANCISCO NEWCOMER WHOSE SOMA CONDO IS UP IN VALUE BIG-TIME SINCE YOU BOUGHT JUST A FEW YEARS AGO? HEY, DON’T YOU BENEFIT FROM PROP 13? DO YOU REALLY NEED IT, NEVIUS? HEY, WHY DON’T WE MEANS-TEST YOUR PROP 13 BENEFITS, NEVIUS? STRIKE EIGHT

“Rent control was enacted in 1979,” said New. “The law has been changed, like, 72 times since then.”

AND SOME OF THOSE CHANGES WERE, LIKE, AT THE BEHEST OF … THE SFAA, RIGHT? IS JANAN NEW COMPLAINING ABOUT THE NUMBER OF CHANGES HER ORG INSTIGATED? WHY DIDN’T YOU ASK HER THAT, MR. EVERYMAN? STRIKE NINE 

“It’s the haves against the have-nots,” Erhardt said, “and every tenant attorney thinks they are Robin Hood.”

AND DOES EVERY TENANT ATTORNEY THINK THEY ARE ROBIN HOOD, IRL? NOPE. STRIKE TEN, AND YOU, CW NEVIUS, THE MIGHTY CASEY, ARE OUT.

AUDI 5000…

The Most Airbnb People You Could Possibly Imagine, Alamo Square Area, Western Addition, USA

Monday, August 11th, 2014

(Not That There’s Anything Wrong With That.)

This has been a remarkable change, over the past half-decade.

You see them, all over the place, every day, coming and going, taking photos of buildings, looking at maps, asking where “the Seven Ladies” are, asking where the “Full House house” is, and rolling luggage up and down the street, you know, that kind of thing.

Sometimes I don’t know if they’re Airbnb people, but other times, like this time, it’s easy to tell: 

Click to expand

I don’t have a generalized beef against tourists – that makes me different from the typical Western Addition NIMBY.

In any event, this is what Airbnb looks like IRL on the street.

Will This Fall’s Half-Billion Transit Bond Allow Your Landlord to Raise Your Rent, Costing You Thousands? – “Pass-Throughs”

Friday, August 1st, 2014

I don’t know.

But check this out:

“Ordinance calling and providing for a special election to be held in the City and County of San Francisco on Tuesday, November 4, 2014, for the purpose of submitting to San Francisco voters a proposition to incur the following bonded debt of the City and County: $500,000,000 to finance the construction, acquisition, and improvement of certain transportation and transit related improvements, and related costs necessary or convenient for the foregoing purposes; authorizing landlords to pass-through 50% of  the resulting property tax increase to residential tenants under Administrative Code Chapter 37…”

All right kids – you do the math. Start with $850,000,000 and divide that up among the denizens of the 415 / 628.

I don’t know how to do that but when I tried, I came up with a $30 a month rent increase for you, Gentle Reader, for the next 7-10 years.

Would the average landlord take the trouble to do a pass-through? IDK. I’m thinking the typical rent-controlled renter in SF doesn’t have to deal with pass-throughs currently. But maybe this big old honking bond would be the trigger for a wave of passthroughs?

Here’s what former SFGov employee Howard Wong has to say:

Arguments against MUNI infrastructure improvement bond

What does the ballot measure do:

Raises property taxes and rents (50% pass-through) to pay for General Obligation Bonds of $500 million, with $350 million in interest payments, for a total debt load of $850 million.

Funds “may be allocated” for transit and roads—carte blanche authority for unspecific projects.

If the Bond is rejected by voters, property taxes and rents would be reduced for everyone—not just for rich companies and the wealthy.

To read the Ordinance’s legal language is to oppose the Bond Measure.

http://www.sfgov2.org/ftp/uploadedfiles/elections/ElectionsArchives/Meeting_Information/BSC/agendas/2014/November/1-B%20Transportation%20Road%20Improvement%20GO.pdf

The SFMTA wants more money, certainly. But the question is what will the SFMTA do for us in order to get the money, right? Otherwise, we’re just shoveling more coal into a broken-down machine. Why not use the bond as a carrot to get the SFMTA to reform?

Perhaps our SFMTA doesn’t deserve this bond?

Anyway, if I were promoting this bond, I’d figure out what the odds are that landlords would pass through 50% of the burden and also how much rents would be increased, on average, and for how long. And then I’d say, well this is what the SFMTA is going to do with your money and this is how much it will cost you, the renter, or you, the owner.

Is this massive transit bond a good idea?

I don’t know.

OMG, I’m Confused: Rent a Tiny “Sleeping Room” on Page Street for $1250/Mo? But What About Rent Control?

Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

[UPDATE:  It’s back, after being hounded off of CL – here it is for the low, low price of $995 per month as of August 4, 2014.]

Or $1150, that’s the latest price for 1880 Page Street #3B. Excerpts from craigslist:

“Video Tour at http://youtu.be/8OEgeklUCDQ
Large sleeping room has newer carpet, sink with granite counter & closet. There is a shared hall bath. No Kitchen.
This is a rent control apartment.
Students, international students, co-signers all welcome.
Studio / 1 Bath in Haight Ashbury
Rent: $1,150
Square feet: 200″

So I’m thinking there’s gotta be a kitchen associated with this apartment somewhere, right?

Hey, what about 1880 Page Street #3A?

Well, I think I’ve found the kitchen.

Mmmm. It might be hard to believe but when we were deep into our Great Recession back in aught-ten, you could rent a two-bed on Page in the Upper Haight for a mere $1600 per month. See?

“Price: $1,595
2 Bedrooms
1 full Bathroom
650 sqft”

If this two-bedroom unit rented for $1600 back in 2010 and the same tenant(s) is/are still there, then the current rent is going to be $1600-something per month, let’s guess, assuming no pass-throughs from the landlord.

Let me now direct you to Topic No. 359: Section 6.15c(3) Petitions Based on Proportional Rent.

Uh oh.

But hey, maybe a new master tenant moved in to the two-bed just this year in high-rent 2014. In that case the rent could be what, like $4000 per month? IDK, I’m not up on things, pricewise. Anyway, imagining this, then maybe $1,000 or $1,250 or something like that per month is a fair price for just 30% of the apartment?

But then, no kitchen.

Uh oh:

California Civil Code section 1941 states that when a landlord rents property to a tenant as a place to live, the property must be in a “habitable” condition. (“Habitable” means fit to live in; “uninhabitable” means not fit to live in.) Section 1941 also states that the landlord must repair problems that make the property uninhabitable – except for problems caused by the tenant or the tenant’s guests, children or pets. In order for the property to be habitable, it must have … [a] kitchen with a sink, which cannot be made of an absorbent material (for example, wood)…”

Oh, and lastly, “SLEEPING ROOM?” Hey, you’re a naive international student right? Well, here’s your new sleeping room, hurray!

In the words of John Malkovich, WTF to that.

Or maybe Unit #3 used to be a three bedroom?

In closing, “Amenities:  Carpet”

In closing, never forget Kitchens.

[UPDATE: “This posting has been flagged for removal.” But you can still find the ad below – just click on over.]

$1150 / 200ft² – Page Street Sleeping Room – No Kitchen (haight ashbury)
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© craigslist – Map data © OpenStreetMap
1880 Page Street
(google map) (yahoo map)

0BR / sharedBa 200ft2 apartment available aug 01
laundry in bldg street parking

Open House Dates
tuesday 2014-07-29

1880 Page Street #3B

Bill Harkins Brokerage #01230576
www.billharkins.com

Video Tour at http://youtu.be/8OEgeklUCDQ

1880 Page Street is located close to Golden Gate Park, USF, UCSF, Haight Street & transportation and much more.

Large sleeping room has newer carpet, sink with granite counter & closet. There is a shared hall bath. No Kitchen.

This is a rent control apartment.

Lease Terms:
12 months then month to month rent control apartment. No pets. Students, international students, co-signers all welcome.

Tenants provide current downloaded pdf file of credit report showing FICO score by e-mail along with application provided by broker.

Please no applications prior to viewing. Co-signers provide same application and credit report. Students under 21 with co-signers do not need to provide credit reports. Some California high value property owner co-signers do not need to provide credit report. Service animals welcome please submit all requests for reasonable accommodation with application for owners approval.

PG&E, water and garbage included.
Coin laundry room off 1st level lobby.
Square feet is estimate.
Smoking designations follows.

10 unit complex designated non smoking building
Final smoking designation not yet named or due till 12/31/14
#3C, #4 and #6 are smoking optional
#1, #2, #3A, #3B, #5, #8, #9 non smoking (no unit #7 exists)

Details:
Studio / 1 Bath in Haight Ashbury
Rent: $1,150
Square feet: 200

Location:
1880 Page St #3B, San Francisco (Haight Ashbury)

Amenities:
* Carpet
* On Site Laundry

Contact:
Bill Harkins, Bill Harkins Brokerage, Inc

Spank the Landlord! – Infamous Owner of 312 Fillmore Gets a Notice of Violation from San Francisco – Tenants Strike Back

Friday, May 23rd, 2014

Well some tenant at 312 Fillmore got a letter from the landlord and sent it off to Hoodline.com and the rest is history.

Here’s the update. Some of the tenants contacted DBI. See?

And then DBI sent an Inspector out two days ago.

And then the Inspector looked around and filed a Notice of Violation yesterday.

On 5/21/14 Inspector Steve Mungovan investigated the complaint at unit #25 of the subject property and observed violations of the San Francisco Housing Code which are delineated within the Notice of Violation issued on 5/22/2014 identified by Complaint Tracking #201474055. Pertinent observations are as follows: Peeling paint and damaged wall surfaces.”

This is only going to get worse for this particular landlord.

Oh, and guess what? If the LL tries to evict anybody soon, that action just might be presumed to be a retaliatory eviction.

Ouch.

On It Goes…

Description: The kitchen sink hot water pipe was changed out previously from galvanized to bronze; they didnt change out the cold water, which is still leaking. Because the building and piping is old, there are blockages. He has had water leak out and found standing water in the apartment. **He has had a water leak from rain that is coming through the window and there is damage to the wall below. There was also a large crack about 2-3 inches deep and a crack on the outside, where the water is coming in. The apartment has not been painted since he moved in, in 1989. Cracks in walls.
Instructions: 311 SR# 3649450 , ** 3649409 rec’d by HIS on 5/16/2014