SF Apartment : May 2017


Eviction Restrictions

Two new pieces of legislation—one authored by Supervisor Mark Farrell and the other authored by Supervisors Aaron Peskin and Jane Kim—aim to crack down on wrongful owner move-in evictions.

Both pieces of legislation would require that all landlords conducting owner move-in evictions swear under oath to follow all of the city’s eviction laws (under penalty of perjury). Farrell’s legislation also calls for these landlords to provide annual documentation proving that they or a family member is living in the residence, through the duration of the required three years. This ordinance would also provide more support to law enforcement to enforce the new law.

Under the legislation written by Supervisors Peskin and Kim, the current eviction laws would be easier to enforce, making fines and jail time more likely for landlords evicting tenants fraudulently. Landlords would also be required to include the existing maximum rent on the notice to vacate. If a landlord charges more than the maximum amount of rent during the minimum three-year period, the misdemeanor would come with a fine of up to $100,000 and six months of jail time.

According to Farrell’s office, there have been 1,500 owner move-in evictions since 2013. However, according to an annual report from the Rent Board, overall evictions are down 21% from March 2016 to February 2017.

Western Addition Transit Improvements

SFMTA is considering a number of projects that would improve transit, congestion, walkability, and pedestrian safety in the Western Addition. According to a report by the Governors Highway Safety Association, California ranked first in the country with the most pedestrian-related deaths last year. Currently, the Western Addition is home to 70% of the city’s severe and fatal traffic injuries.

The SFMTA is working with the Western Additional Community-Based Transportation Plan (WACBTP) to determine which projects to pursue. According to the WACBTP’s website, the group is a community-fueled effort to examine transportation improvements in the Western Addition with an emphasis on improving walking, biking, and taking transit. The intent is to improve transportation safety and crime prevention through environmental design.

Some of the proposals being considered are fewer traffic lanes to allow continental sidewalks, increased visibility at intersections, “edge lines” to reduce speeding, leading pedestrian intervals (meaning pedestrians would get the walk signal before traffic lights turn green for vehicles), and new bike lanes.

Mo’MAGIC, a local community collaborative nonprofit, is also helping the projects move forward through increased community outreach and communication.
So far, $5.8 million has been raised for the proposals, which is half of what is needed to complete the full plan.

Proposed Legislation for Charging Ports

Mayor Lee and Supervisor Tang have introduced legislation that would require new residential, commercial and municipal property owners to plan for electric vehicle charging infrastructure in parking lots, potentially accessible to every parking spot in the lot. This will also be required of buildings undergoing major renovations (mandatory seismic retrofitting exempt).

Specifically, the ordinance would require that 10% of parking spaces be designated for electrical vehicles (EV) and an additional 10% be designated for potential EV charging and upgrades. The remaining 80% of the parking lot would be required to be “EV capable,” which means that every parking spot would be able to reach the charging infrastructure by using conduit tubes.

Nonprofit Development in the Mission

Two nonprofit developers—The Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA) and the Mission Housing Development Corp.—plan to add 733 below-market-rate units to the Mission District over the next three years.

These six affordable housing projects—on Folsom Street, Mission Street, and South Van Ness Avenue—will also include 50,000 square feet of commercial space, with plans to house affordable retailers, after-school programs, and mom-and-pop businesses.

These buildings were acquired through Mayor Ed Lee’s Small Sites program.

Soft-Story Retrofit Reminder & Free Workshop

Attention Soft Story Property Owners–permit applications for Tier Three must be submitted to the Department of Building Inspection by no later than September 15, 2017. Tier Three includes multi-unit buildings with three or more stories or five or more units. Please do not delay. Take the next step to ensure your property, and your tenants, are better protected by complying with San Francisco’s Mandatory Seismic Retrofitting law. Keep in mind, you may also qualify to add an accessory dwelling unit to your property during the seismic retrofit.

Additionally, DBI, along with the Mayor’s Earthquake Safety Implementation Program, is hosting a free public fair on June 15, 2017, at the Bill Graham Civic Center Auditorium, from 12:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. Please visit www.sfdbi.org/earthquakefair for details.

DBI staff is happy to answer any questions and assist with obtaining retrofitting permits at this free public event.

Short-Term Rental Crackdown

In an effort to positively impact long-term housing availability in San Francisco, Airbnb has terminated the accounts of 923 hosts who were operating illegally. In most of these cases, the hosts were violating Airbnb’s “One Host, One Home” policy, which limits hosts to having only one rental listed on the platform.

March 20th SFAA Members Meeting

The March 20th SFAA member meeting was held at the Jewish Community Center in Kanbar Hall. The meeting began with the monthly Legal Q & A, moderated by Dave Wasserman of Wasserman & Stern, followed by a welcome from Eric Andresen, SFAA Board President, and a legislative update from Janan New, SFAA Executive Director.

As for the guest speakers, Rosie Dilger and Ellouise Patton of Rate Payer Advocate discussed Recology’s Rate adjustment application; Jean Walsh, Communications Director at SFPUC, and Amy Kam of LEED AP updated attendees on the progress of the multi-billion dollar San Francisco Sewer System Improvement Program (SSIP) and the results of the recent Flood Resilience Study and information on RainReady SF programs. Finally, Craig Berendt of Berendt Properties, Deborah Brown of J. Wavro Associates, and Casey Belway of AMSI participated in a panel to give perspective on market conditions moderated by Eric Andresen.

For handouts from the member meeting, go to www.sfaa.org/calendar.