Watch new 2020 law #9: California to cap rent hikes for millions of tenants

A new California law will protect about 8 million Californians from dramatic rent hikes, and from certain evictions that lack “just cause” when a lease is no longer in effect.

As of Jan. 1, some landlords will be able to increase rents by 5% plus the rate of inflation (typically 2%-3%). They also will have to provide a “just cause” for evicting tenants and, in some circumstances, pay for tenants to relocate.

California’s version of “rent control lite” is modeled after a measure Oregon adopted earlier this year. It is not as expansive as rent control recently enacted in New York.

Gov. Gavin Newsom lobbied for the new measure, arguing that it is necessary to respond to rapid gentrification, soaring rents and an epidemic of homelessness.

The new law has some important exemptions. It doesn’t apply to single-family home rentals, unless they are owned by investment firms.

In this video, CalMatters’ housing and data reporter Matt Levin breaks down the California rent control law in a minute. CalMatters is building a video playlist to explain how various new laws will influence the lives of Californians.

You can subscribe to our channel here.

Latest in Video

Bowl’d general manager Ruben Hernandez processes take-out orders in the Oakland Korean BBQ restaurant’s empty dining room on March 16, 2020. Today Alameda and surrounding counties announced an order to shelter in place until April 7 in an effort to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus. Photo by Anne Wernikoff for CalMatters

Video

California’s shelter-in-place order, explained

California coronavirus homeschooling

Video

Confusion reigns as California families ponder coronavirus homeschool

Oakland Technical High School students stand in front of the marquee after it was announced that all Oakland schools would close for three weeks over coronavirus concerns on March 13, 2020. Photo by Anne Wernikoff for CalMatters

Video

Schools shut down in massive numbers across California amid coronavirus fears

disneyland

Video

Facing pandemic, California takes cover, from the Capitol to Disneyland

Maria Castellanos, 75, cares for her grandson Valentino, 5, while he is out of school. Elk Grove Unified closed all district schools until March 13 after a student tested positive for COVID-19. Photo by Anne Wernikoff for CalMatters

Video

Quarantine grandma? California families scramble as coronavirus hits

CalMatters reporter explains California's response to the coronavirus.

Video

How California is responding to the coronavirus