City Government, Community

New rent regulations and tenant protections become law

July 9, 2019

Hayward City Hall on a partly cloudy evening

The City of Hayward is establishing a new mandatory mediation and binding arbitration process that can be utilized by tenants when their landlord wants to raise their rent by more than five percent in a year.

The new regulation process for rent increase in excess of five percent takes effect July 25 and applies to multi-unit residential properties built prior to 1979. All single-family homes and condominiums are exempted, as required by state law.

The new mediation and arbitration process is part of a broader update to the City’s 39-year-old Residential Rent Stabilization Ordnance (RRSO), and received final Council approval on June 25. The new ordinance also requires all landlords to file with the City copies of all notices of rent increase or termination of tenancy issued to residential tenants in Hayward. Other provisions set forth the justifications by which landlords can lawfully evict a tenant and prohibit discrimination against housing applicants intending to use government vouchers to pay rent. The new ordinance also protect tenants against retaliation by landlords for exercising their rights under the new ordinance.

At the same June 25 meeting, the Council also passed separate emergency legislation immediately capping residential rent increases at five percent until the new more comprehensive update to the RRSO takes effect. Like the mediation and arbitration process for rent increases over 5 percent, the emergency one-month cap on rent increases applies only to multi-unit residential properties constructed prior to 1979, and exempts all single-family homes and condos as required by state law.

To read more about the new ordinances and regulations, visit the Housing Division page on the City website.