Rent Control Top Concern for Multifamily Industry

California is third state to pass legislation this year.

Rent control is top of mind for multifamily leaders, with many saying it will only exacerbate the affordable housing crisis. Earlier this week, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 1482, making the state the third to pass rent control this year, following Oregon and New York.

California’s statewide law, which goes into effect Jan. 1 and will expire in 2030, will limit rent increases to 5% per year, plus the local rate of inflation, and create new standards to protect residents from no-cause eviction.

The law won’t apply to housing built within the past 15 years nor does it affect single-family homes, unless owned by corporations or REITs. It also doesn’t apply to the 2 million renters in the state who already have rent control in their municipalities.

“The most effective way to fix California’s housing crisis is by building more housing across a range of price points, and AB 1482 makes that harder to do,” said Doug Bibby, president of the National Multifamily Housing Council. “After Californians overwhelmingly rejected the rent control ballot initiative less than a year ago, lawmakers went against their constituents by passing a measure that will discourage investment, shrink the availability of affordable housing that already exists, and squeeze even more people struggling in the housing market. This makes the problem worse. The housing affordability crisis is real, real Americans are being harmed by it every day, and we need real solutions— not restrictive policies that we know don’t work.”

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