Tenants living in some of San Francisco’s quickly disappearing sources for affordable housing – rent controlled units – face a particular situation when property owners wish to evict them for profit.
One of the quickest and cheapest ways to evict a tenant is by harassing them until the situation becomes unbearable and the tenant moves on their own. When they leave, the landlord has an empty unit that they can rent to new tenants at market rate rent.
So CJJC, the San Francisco Tenant’s Union along with various housing allies are working with SF supervisors to introduce an ordinance change that would make the current anti-harassment protections stronger and easier to enforce. This hassle-free housing ordinance will allow tenants to collect damages from their landlords for each incident of harassment.
Individual property owners are not the only ones guilty of harassing their tenants. The foreclosure crisis effect on tenants has been severe and many have been illegally evicted by banks, real estate speculators and real estate agents that receive a better payoff the sooner they get tenants out. This ordinance change will apply to them as well and tenants will be able to hold banks and all those profiting from the foreclosure crisis responsible.
We want to ensure that SF tenants have a right to hassle free housing – and that their rights are respected, whether they are tenants living in long term rent controlled unit paying below-market rent, or living in rent-controlled homes that have been foreclosed. Closing the loopholes that exist in protection against harassment is one crucial way to make sure all of our right to stay is protected.