Dean Preston with Tenants Together says the Ellis Act was intended to help long-term landlords sell their properties. He says as it’s used now the act only helps people who want to convert low rent apartments into high rent condominiums.
“The vast majority of the Ellis Act evictions are performed by property owners who are real estate speculators who are only entering the real estate business in order to get out of it,” says Preston.
A senate bill would allow San Francisco to prevent the conversion of any rental property that’s been held for less than five years.
A measure in the Assembly would allow all cities to place a moratorium on condominium conversions as long as local affordable housing goals haven’t been met.
Debra Carlton with the California Apartment Association says the Ellis Act is an important safeguard for the small property owner.
“That owner would either like to move back into their unit because of various reasons, maybe their family has grown larger, or they have sold it because they can no longer pay the bills,” says Carlton.
Committee hearings on the bills are expected in the coming weeks.