Long Beach tenant relocation assistance takes shape

The City Attorney's Office has issued its recommendations to the Mayor and City Council.

We said earlier that after tenants' advocates have tried unsuccessfully for years to usher in eviction and rent controls, Long Beach finally softened their heart. In its April meeting, the city agreed in principle that amid rising rents, landlords should dole out relocation payments to tenants who are displaced from unaffordable rent increases, or no-fault evictions.

The details on implementing an ordinance were not finalized then, but MT Evictions can now provide some clarity after the City Attorney's office has done their due diligence and made recommendations with regard to amending the Long Beach Municipal Code by adding Chapter 8.97 relating to tenant relocation assistance. We finally have a glimpse into what the rules will look like.

View the City Attorney's recommendations in this PDF »

When proposed rent increases exceed 10% in a 12-month period and the tenant objects to the hike, the landlord must pay relocation payments. Owners also have to pay relocation payments when the tenant is transitioned through no fault of their own, such as a landlord's substantial rehabilitation of the unit.

Exactly how much money dispensed in relocation payments?

When tenants are displaced by a rent increase or through a no-fault eviction, landlords are obligated to pay two months of rent, but the dollar amount is pegged to the "number of bedrooms averages across all Long Beach zip codes in the then-current Payment Standards/Small Area Fair Market Rents published by the Housing Authority of the City of Long Beach," according to the city's legal team. This number will fluctuate, but cannot exceed $4,500.

Of course, there are several nuances in the soon-to-be inked law, unforgiving deadlines, notice requirements and other considerations best journeyed with MT Evictions and our attorney partners.