A temporary rent-control ordinance went into effect Thursday for unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County, limiting rent increases to 3 percent a year and placing restrictions on tenant evictions.
The ordinance will be in effect for six months.
The county Board of Supervisors approved the temporary Rent Stabilization Ordinance in November. Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, who championed the plan to limit rents while the county considers longer-term solutions, said an estimated 200,000 renters will be protected by the county ordinance.
"Several recent local studies indicate that rent stabilization, thoughtfully adopted with other market regulation measures, can successfully protect tenants at risk of eviction with minimal negative impact on the housing market," Kuehl said.
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"If we want to stem the tide of people falling into homelessness and be sure our seniors, as well as other renters, are protected from eviction, we have to curb unrestricted growth in rents."
The board had backed state Proposition 10 on the November ballot, but the measure failed. The proposition would have given local jurisdictions more leeway to impose rent controls by repealing the 1995 Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act that limits rent control to older housing stock.
Supporters of rent control have insisted that regulations are needed to prevent sudden, skyrocketing rent hikes that often require people to move our or sometimes force them to live on the streets.
But opponents contend the limits on rent increases unfairly interfere with building owners' ability to do business.
Residents and property owners can get more information about the temporary ordinance by calling the county Department of Consumer and Business Affairs at (833) 223-RENT (7386), or by going online to rent.lacounty.gov.