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I Can’t Take Being a SF Landlord Any Longer


Stashed in: Airbnb, San Francisco!, economics, Homeless, San Francisco, airbnb

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The landlord's take on San Francisco's horrible housing situation. Remember that because San Francisco's housing stock is mostly 4-flat or smaller buildings, it's not super economic for big corporate entities to get in the landlord game... so a lot of the landlords are in fact small investors like this person.

This is very wrong:

What does get me a bit frustrated is that the average landlord loather doesn’t know just how regularly tenants take advantage of this system. One woman, for instance, who has resided in one of our four-bedroom units for 17+ years, pays just over $1,000/month rent. That is all fine and good, as the purpose of rent control is to keep places affordable – but she proceeds to rent out individual rooms on Craigslist for around $900/month each. I see the postings, know that she is making a killing off the rent-controlled price, and yet can do nothing about it. Sounds crazy, right? But she is not the only one … suffice it to say that rent control is quite a powerful force when the master tenant is still living in the unit, and conversations with three different lawyers have gotten me nowhere. In the meantime, renters like this are increasing my expenses (random repairs, insurance, utilities, taxes) and eroding any chance I have of breaking even.

I wish we had rent controls in Palo Alto because I would never do this and unfortunately my rental rates keep going up.

This landlord's frustration also explains the upcoming battle between the city and Airbnb.

Maybe get rid of subleasing?  or make it only an emergency option for less than 12 months?  Should be no reason to renew your lease, if you need to sublease.  Free up the properties for the market, or will this just shift who gets the money?  What about get rid of subleasing, and offer a benefit (which I think already happens) for keeping your rents low.

That kind of subleasing is illegal in SF. You can only charge roommates a rate proportional to the actual rent.  That landlord has grounds for eviction, and _all_ the previous roommates have grounds for 100% refund.

I know of master tenants that do it, and I know renters that pay it, it's accepted as a norm in the rental market of SF.  I don't know of many that would turn down an apt or room, because someone is subleasing, and pocketing profit, they are just so happy they finally found a place, in such a competitive market ;)

Jason, right, but thanks to Airbnb more people are breaking that law than ever before. 

Airbnb says it doesn't encourage the practice but more people are definitely doing it.

Janill, your proposal makes sense to me.

I saw on the news the other day, a lot of landlords are putting no airbnb clauses in their leases now, because it has become an issue, and that is not the intention of the the rental, and also not fair to the neighbors. 

That's smart. Fair is fair.

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