The Real Deal Los Angeles

Over 1,000 rent-controlled apartments left the LA market last year

Rent control suffers amidst a booming market, report finds

April 04, 2016 02:30PM

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Credit: Wikipedia Creative Commons

Credit: Wikipedia Creative Commons

Over 1,000 rent-controlled apartments left the Los Angeles housing market last year, many to be replaced by high-end condos and rentals, the L.A. Times reports. 

Since 2001, more than 20,000 rent-controlled units have disappeared. The tactic has recently picked up speed. At least 51 percent of the L.A. properties removed under the Ellis Act in 2013 had been purchased within the previous year, the Times found.

The number of units removed from the market each year has increased by threefold since 2013. Upscale neighborhoods like Beverly Grove, Sawtelle and Pico-Robertson are particularly susceptible to removals.

Currently, 641,000 rent-controlled units remain in the city.

Under current law, landlords are permitted to evict tenants from rent-controlled units under two scenarios: one, if they request to take the property off the rental market, or two, if they plan on demolishing the building completely for new apartments.

According to the Times, a significant number of recent evictions have been part of the latter, in which developers purchase the buildings to replace them with higher-end rentals.

This practice has drawn ire from the city’s housing advocates, who warn of a potential affordable housing shortage. Permit data from L.A.’s housing department show that developers are building twice as many new units as the demolished rent-controlled ones. [LAT]Cathaleen Chen