Is My LA Rental Subject to Rent Control or Just Cause Eviction Protections?

“Is my LA residential rental unit subject to rent control or just cause eviction protections?” This is one of the first questions landlords in the city or county of LA need to determine because it will have an impact on what a landlord can do during a tenancy and it will also impact the ability to evict a tenant in the city or county of Los Angeles. This article will explain how a landlord in LA city or county can determine if their rental unit is subject to rent control or just cause tenant eviction protections.

Note that this article will discuss two of the biggest rent control jurisdictions in LA. We will start with the city of Los Angeles and then we will move on to discuss unincorporated areas of Los Angeles county. This article does not discuss other jurisdictions in LA county that have rent control, including, for example, West Hollywood, Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, and more. So, if your rental unit is located within an incorporated city in the county of Los Angeles, other than LA city, you need to determine if the city has any rent control or just-cause tenant eviction protections. Again, this article discusses only LA city and the unincorporated parts of LA county.

Does My LA City Rental Unit Have Rent Control or Just-Cause Tenant Eviction Protections?

If the residential rental unit is located within the city of LA, you need to find out whether or not your rental unit is subject to Los Angeles city rent control or Los Angeles city just-cause tenant eviction protections. First, you need to determine if your rental property is subject to LA’s long-running Rent Stabilization Ordinance (RSO).

If your rental property is in LA county but outside the city of LA, scroll down and read the section that discusses LA county.

Is My Unit Subject to the LA RSO?

Here are the steps to determine whether your residential rental property in the city of Los Angeles is subject to the LA RSO.

First, visit the Zimas website. It should look something like this:

Is My Unit Subject to the LA RSO?
Is My Unit Subject to the LA RSO?

Once you’re on that website, you’ll want to enter the House Number in that field and the Street Name in the other field, then click the “Go” button. For example, if the LA city rental unit is located at 123 Main St, Los Angeles, CA 90001, the only information that you’ll want to include is “123” as the House Number and “Main” as the Street Name. You’ll exclude everything else.

If the Zimas system finds a match, it will show you the entire address. It will look something like this:

Is My Unit Subject to the LA RSO?
Is My Unit Subject to the LA RSO?

You’ll want to click on the address that matches your rental property. If a match is not found, you can stop here as the rest of this tutorial will not apply to you. You can contact the LA housing department for further assistance. If a match is found, after you click on the property address, you’ll see something like this:

Is My Unit Subject to the LA RSO?
Is My Unit Subject to the LA RSO?

Click on the “Housing” tab to expand it. Once you click on the Housing tab, you should see something like this:

Is My Unit Subject to the LA RSO?
Is My Unit Subject to the LA RSO?

Next to the words “Rent Stabilization Ordinance,” it will say either Yes or No. If it says yes, your LA city rental unit is subject to the LA RSO and you can read the LA RSO rules. If it says no, then your LA city rental unit is not subject to the LA RSO, but it is likely subject to other LA city tenant protections discussed below.

Is My Unit Subject to Other LA City Tenant Protections?

Unfortunately for landlords and property owners in the city of Los Angeles, the city council recently created far-reaching, detrimental laws to landlords. Even if the rental property does not fall under the RSO and is therefore not subject to the traditional LA RSO in the city of Los Angeles, there is a very good chance that the LA city rental unit is subject to the newly-established tenant protections. These new rent control and tenant protection laws in the city of LA established just-cause tenant protections for almost all rental units, including single family homes. The new law also requires landlords to pay tenants relocation money to move if a tenant decides to move after certain rent increases. And, the new law made it so that a landlord cannot begin a non-payment of rent eviction case until the tenant owes more than one month of the fair market rent. All together, these are extremely terrible rules for landlords who rent units in the city of Los Angeles. More information can be found here.

Does My LA County Rental Unit Have Rent Control or Just-Cause Tenant Eviction Protections?

In order to determine whether your residential LA county rental unit is subject to rent control or just-cause tenant eviction protections, you have to identify whether or not your rental unit is located within an unincorporated area of LA county.

If your rental property is located in the city of Los Angeles, scroll up and read the information discussing LA city rental properties.

Is My LA County Rental Unit Located in an Unincorporated Area of LA County?

First, visit the Z-Net website. It will look something like this:

Is My Unit Subject to the LA County Rent Control?
Is My Unit Subject to the LA County Rent Control?

Next, click the big red Z-Net button. Once you click the button, you’ll see this:

Is My Unit Subject to the LA County Rent Control?
Is My Unit Subject to the LA County Rent Control?

Click the red “OK” button. Once you click the OK button, you’ll see this:

Is My Unit Subject to the LA County Rent Control?
Is My Unit Subject to the LA County Rent Control?

Where it says “Enter Address,” you’ll want to type the entire rental unit address. Once you type the full address, hit Enter and you’ll see a picture of a map that looks something like this (it will look a bit different based on the address that you input):

Is My Unit Subject to the LA County Rent Control?
Is My Unit Subject to the LA County Rent Control?

If the LA county rental unit shows up in an area that is in the unincorporated area of LA county, it will appear as a dot surrounding by a blue/light blue box. If the rental unit shows next to a city with red lettering and not within a blue/light blue box, then it means your rental property is located within a city and not in an unincorporated part of LA county.

If you determine that the rental unit is located within an unincorporated part of LA county, you’ll want to follow the LA county rent control and just-cause tenant eviction protections here.

Caution

It is important to note that even if your rental unit is not in the city of LA and is not in an unincorporated area of LA county, there may still be local tenant protections in effect. Contact your city to make this determination.

FAQ

Does my LA city rental property have rent control or just cause tenant eviction protections?

Use the ZIMAS tool noted above to check whether your property is subject to LA city’s RSO. If your LA city rental property is exempt from the RSO, it may still fall under the scope of the newly created just cause ordinance.

Does my LA county rental property have rent control or just cause tenant eviction protections?

To determine if your LA county rental property is located in an unincorporated part of LA county and therefore subject to LA county’s rent stabilization laws, use the ZNET tool noted above. If the property is located in an unincorporated area of LA county, you’ll need to follow the LA county rent stabilization and tenant eviction rules. If your property is not located in an unincorporated area of the county, you need to then determine if the incorporated city where the rental property is located has rent control or extra tenant protections. For example, as of the date of this article, LA city has rent control, but Santa Clarita does not.

Additional Information

* It is important for landlords to understand what jurisdiction the rental property is located in, and whether or not there are any special tenant protections or rent control applicable to the property. This article discusses only LA city and unincorporated areas of LA county. Several other jurisdictions in LA county also have rent control and/or just cause tenant eviction protections. Those other jurisdictions are not discussed in this article.

Disclaimer

The information in this article and blog are not meant to be legal advice and is intended for educational purposes only. The laws change frequently and this article may not be updated to reflect current rules. Do not rely on this article when making legal decisions.

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This article is courtesy of the Law Office of David Piotrowski, a California law firm representing landlords with eviction matters.

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The Law Office of David Piotrowski

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