California landlord group calls on members to freeze rents and evictions

California Apartment Assn. asks members to act with “compassion” for tenants

Mar.March 23, 2020 03:08 PM
California Apartment Association CEO Thomas K. Bannon
California Apartment Association CEO Thomas K. Bannon

The California Apartment Assn., the state’s largest landlord representation group, has called for members to freeze rents and halt evictions in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The CAA called for the freeze to extend through the end of May and asked members to commit to a suite of other measures as part of its “Safe at Home Guidelines” meant to mitigate the effects of the pandemic on renters.

The association has about 13,000 members and represents about 60,000 property owners and industry professionals.

The CAA is asking members to waive late fees for renters affected by the pandemic, to offer flexible payment plans, and to share information about resources with renters.
Several municipalities have already placed emergency moratoriums on evictions, including Los Angeles. Mayor Eric Garcetti, who barred residential evictions for six months. The L.A. City Council wants to extend that order to 12 months.

California Governor Gavin Newsom issued an executive order allowing and encouraging other jurisdictions to adopt moratoriums on both evictions and foreclosures.

New York State also suspended eviction proceedings last week, but the government has not officially suspended rent payments.

The California Apartment Assn. is the state’s most influential group representing multifamily property owners. It has a significant lobbying presence at the state level. Last year it led lobbying on behalf of landlords over the Assembly Bill 1482, a bill that instituted a form of state rent control. CAA opposed the bill, but after securing some concessions it dropped its opposition.

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