Policies

ORDINANCES

1. Current Rent Control Ordinance(PDF, 3MB)

Ordinance No. 3250(PDF, 3MB) is the primary legislation regulating rent increases and terminations of tenancy in the City of Alameda.

The following documents provide additional guidance, clarification, processes to follow, and examples:

Regulation 19-01: Rent increases that exceed Annual General Adjustment

View Regulation(PDF, 33KB)

Purpose: To inform the landlord and tenant community how the Rent Program will respond to notices of rent increases where the rent increase applies to a rental unit not exempt under State Law; takes effect after September 1, 2019; and exceeds 2.8% of the Base Rent.

Regulation 20-01: Registration requirements for fully regulated units

View regulation(PDF, 676KB)

Requirements for the following:

  • When a registration statement must be filed
  • Fee exemption requests
  • Notice to tenants following the initial registration or the registration of a new tenancy
  • Annual notice to tenants concerning the Annual General Adjustment and the Maximum Allowable Rent
  • Notice to landlords following registration of a tenancy
  • Annual notice to landlords concerning the Annual General Adjustment and Maximum Allowable Rent
  • Landlord’s failure to meet registration deadline
  • Procedures concerning petitions challenging the Base Rent, Household Services Included with Rent, and Maximum Allowable Rent

Regulation 20-02: Downward Rent Adjustments

View Regulation(PDF, 56KB)

Guidance concerning:

  • Grounds for Downward Rent Adjustments
  • Calculation of corresponding Downward Rent Adjustment
  • Effective date of rent reductions
  • Termination of a Downward Rent Adjustment
  • Time limits
  • Tenant’s notice of housing service reduction
  • Overlap of grounds for a Downward Rent Adjustment
  • Remedies

Regulation 20-03: Dwelling units in the Housing Choice Voucher (Section 8) program

View Regulation(PDF, 329KB)

Purposes:

  • To define more specifically which dwelling units in the Section 8 Program are exempt from all or some provisions of the Rent Ordinance
  • To clarify, in context of the Section 8 Program, what constitutes the landlord’s acceptance of rent for purposes of waiving the landlord’s right to pursue eviction for a tenant’s failure to pay rent
  • To clarify the circumstances under which a landlord is obligated to make relocation payments to a tenant in a rental unit in the Section 8 Program and, if those payments are to be made, the amount thereof.

Regulation 20-04: Registration requirements for partially regulated units

View Regulation(PDF, 984KB)

Requirements for the following:

  • When a registration statement must be filed
  • Fee exemption requests

Regulation 20-05: Banking of Annual General Adjustments

View Regulation(PDF, 369KB)

Includes the following:

  • Requirements for notifying the tenant and Rent Program of a rent increase that includes a banked Annual General Adjustment
  • Example increase
  • Clarification that landlords may file a petition for an Upward Rent Adjustment

Regulation 20-06: Adding/removing tenants

View Regulation(PDF, 413KB)

Guidance concerning:

  • When and how a landlord may increase the rent when a new tenant moves into a rental unit with an existing tenant
  • Reducing the rent when a landlord has increased the rent for an additional tenant and thereafter any tenant vacates the rental unit
  • The landlord’s right to approve or disapprove a prospective additional tenant
  • Entering into a revised rental agreement to include the additional tenant
  • When a tenant who resided in the rental unit before such additional tenant was added vacates the rental unit

Regulation 20-07: Government orders to vacate

View Regulation(PDF, 305KB)

Purpose: To clarify the process to be followed when a governmental agency issues an order to vacate a rental unit as a result of Health or Safety Conditions or of Substandard Conditions

Regulation 20-08: Owner Move-In requirements

View Regulation(PDF, 202KB)

Purpose: To clarify the circumstances where the use of the Owner Move-In provisions are appropriate and to aid a Hearing officer or a court in interpreting such provisions

Regulation 20-09: Single Room Occupancy (SRO) properties

View Regulation(PDF, 369KB)

Guidance concerning:

  • Definition of an SRO
  • When an SRO will be deemed to have “cooking facilities” and “bath facilities”
  • Program fees for SROs, other rental units not subject to rent control under state law, and shared primary residences

Regulation 20-10: Providing program materials to prospective tenants

View Regulation(PDF, 309KB)

Guidance concerning:

  • Definition of a “prospective tenant” as that term is used in Section 6-58.25, Alameda Municipal Code (AMC)
  • Materials that must be provided to a prospective tenant as set forth in Section 6-58.25, AMC

Guidance Concerning Fair Return on Property

View Guidance(PDF, 97KB)

Memo from City Attorney’s Office setting forth guiding principles as to what factors or criteria a Hearing Officer should consider when considering a landlord’s petition for an Upward Rent Adjustment

 

2. Fair Housing and Tenant Protections Ordinance(PDF, 5MB)

 Ordinance No. 3251(PDF, 5MB) prohibits unlawful tenant harassment, disruption of housing services, and housing discrimination including source of income.

 

3. COVID-19 Urgency Ordinance(PDF, 8MB)

Ordinance No. 3275(PDF, 8MB) is part of a series of protections for Alameda residents and businesses that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Among other things, the urgency ordinance imposed a moratorium on rent increases for residential rental units subject to rent control and expanded eviction protections for all residential rental units, including a moratorium on "no fault" terminations of tenancy based on an owner move-in or capital improvement project.

The following documents provide additional guidance, clarification, processes to follow, and examples:

Regulation 20-01 – Unpaid rent

View Regulation(PDF, 430KB)  

Concerns tenant protections and requirements in order to avoid eviction for failing to pay rent, including examples of how landlords may collect unpaid rent

Regulation 20-02 – Moratoriums on rent increases and certain “no fault” terminations of tenancy

View Regulation(PDF, 72KB)  

Guidance concerning:

  • Moratorium on rent increases until 60 days after the rescission of the declaration of Local Emergency or June 30, 2021, whichever is later, including examples of how a landlord may thereafter increase rent
  • Moratorium on action to terminate a tenancy based on Owner Move-In or an unconditionally approved Capital Improvement Plan until 30 days after the rescission of the declaration of Local Emergency

 

 

RESOLUTIONS

1. Capital Improvement Plan Resolution(PDF, 636KB)

Resolution 15138(PDF, 636KB) established the current policy for Capital Improvement Plans, the purpose of which is to encourage landlords to improve the quality of the City's rental housing stock. For more on capital improvements, see the FAQs and Form RP-214(PDF, 162KB).

 

2. Ellis Act Policy(PDF, 495KB)

California's Ellis Act permits owners of residential rental property to withdraw such property from rent or lease while permitting cities and other local entities to impose requirements, procedures, and restrictions on the property owner. Resolution 15517(PDF, 495KB) established the City of Alameda's regulations for terminating a tenancy based on grounds of "Withdrawal of the Rental Unit from the Rental Market." For more information, see the instructions for Form RP-202(PDF, 104KB).

 

3. Annual Rent Program Fee Resolution(PDF, 2MB)

Resolution 15660(PDF, 2MB) established the annual Rent Program fee for FY 2020-2021.

 


OTHER DOCUMENTS

1. Program Services Agreement(PDF, 3MB)

The City of Alameda contracts with the Housing Authority of the City of Alameda to serve as the Program Administrator of the Rent Program. The current Services Agreement(PDF, 3MB) , signed July 1, 2020, includes the Rent Program budget for FY 2020-2021.

 

2. Fee Study(PDF, 199KB)

The Updated Fee Study for FY 2020-2021(PDF, 199KB)  was prepared by SCI Consulting Group under contract with the City of Alameda and serves as the basis for the Rent Program Fee Resolution (see above). It provides the methodology and approach for calculating the fee, legal framework, findings, and recommendations.