City of Emeryville

Residential Landlord And Tenant Relations Ordinance in Effect April 1, 2017

The City of Emeryville has adopted Ordinance No. 16, the “Residential Landlord and Tenant Relations”Ordinance, which is effective April 1, 2017, according to Emeryville city clerk. According to the text of the ordinance, it was adopted to “increase certainty and fairness in the residential rental market in the City by addressing just cause eviction, anti-harassment, and relocation assistance.”

The Ordinance applies to most rental properties in the city, with some exceptions including dwelling units in hotels, motels, lodging houses and rooming houses; nonprofit cooperative housing; and units exempted under state laws, such as units single family homes or new construction as defined in the Costa Hawkins Rental Housing Act. A full list of exemptions is available in the ordinance, available here.

Some of the significant changes under the Ordinance include:

  • Just Cause for Termination of Tenancy: Like ordinances in Oakland, Berkeley and Richmond, an owner must have “just cause” to terminate a tenancy in Emeryville. Just cause may include the following: failure to pay rent, breach of rental contract, tenant illegal activity, violations of city Health and Safety code, failure to allow access to unit, tenant rejected written lease extension, violated occupancy restriction, owner returning from sabbatical to occupy the unit, and condo conversion.
  • Relocation Assistance for No Fault Terminations: Tenants may be entitled to relocation assistance if a termination qualifies as “No Fault.” This includes removal of the unit from the market, owner move-in, sale of a unit, units removed from the market due to habitability issues, and substantial renovations. “Relocation assistance” means either five times the most current fair market rents as published annually by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”) for the Oakland-Fremont, California HUD Metro FMR Area in the Federal Register, or four times the monthly rent that the tenant(s) is paying at the time the Notice of Termination is delivered, whichever amount is greater.
  • Anti-harrassment and Other Prohibited Activities: In addition, the ordinance prohibits owners from harassing behavior towards tenants, including (but not limited to) failure to perform repairs or maintenance, removal of personal property from a unit, or refusal to accept rent. For a full list of the anti-harrassment laws, download the ordinance.
  • Notice of Tenant Rights: Owners must provide to each tenant in a covered unit a “Notice of Tenant Rights” in substantially the same form as follows: “The City of Emeryville regulates the relationship between most landlords and tenants within the City. Generally, landlords may not terminate your tenancy without cause or explanation, and may not reduce or stop providing services agreed to in the rental contract, so long as you pay rent on time as agreed in the rental contract. In addition to State and Federal Laws, the Residential Landlord and Tenant Relations chapter of the Emeryville Municipal Code creates certain rights for landlords and tenants, which may include the right to relocation assistance or the right to return to your rental unit if you are evicted. Visit the City of Emeryville website for more information:”

EBRHA will send updates on the ordinance and provide required forms as they becomes available. For more information, including additional termination requirements and policies, download the ordinance here.