RSO – LAHD . Overview

Photo by Aydin Palabiyikoglu under CC BY 2.0

If you own rental property in Los Angeles, it may be subject to the City’s Rent Stability Act (RSO). Find out if your property falls under this law and what you need to know in order to be in compliance.

In general, the RSO applies to rental properties first built on or before October 1, 1978 in addition to replacement units under LAMC Section 151.28 and if any of the following:

  • apartment
  • condominium
  • Town Home
  • Duplex
  • Two or more single-family housing units on the same plot
  • Rooms in a hotel, motel, residence, or boarding house occupied by the same tenant for 30 or more consecutive days
  • Residential unit(s) attached to a commercial building
  • Ancillary Housing Unit (ADU)
  • Small Annex Housing Unit (JADU)

Mobile homes and recreational vehicles in mobile home parks are also covered by the RSO.

What does RSO cover?

When can the rent be increased?

Rent increases that do not require LAHD approval

  • The rent can be increased to market rate if the tenant:
    • come out voluntarily
    • rent is not paid and is vacated;
    • breach of lease agreement and eviction;
    • evicted for non-compliance with the tenant’s housing plan; or
    • He was fired under the order of the city attorney.
    • Accepts Tenant Purchase Agreement
  • The rent can be increased once every 12 months with an allowable rent increase (English) / allowable rent increase (Spanish). The owner can add an additional 1% for each utility paid by the owner (gas and/or electricity). Effective March 30, 2020, rent increases for rental units subject to the Rent Stabilization Act (RSO) are prohibited until one year after the end of the ongoing local emergency period.
  • If an additional tenant (English) / additional tenant (Spanish) moves into a rental unit: The landlord can increase the rent within 60 days of knowing the additional tenant. There is no increase for the first minor dependent child added to the current rental unit.
  • A monthly fee of $1.61 may be charged by the landlord as part of the tenant’s registration fee. As of January 1, 2020, the surcharge is $38.75. The landlord may pass 50% of the fee to the tenant on a monthly basis rather than once a year. 30 days’ notice must be given to the tenant to collect the $1.61 additional rental fee.
  • Effective January 1, 2022, the landlord may collect 1/12 of 50% of the annual systematic law enforcement fee from the tenant of the rental unit per month. (Added by Decree No. 187, 108, effect 8/6/21.)
  • An additional $3.00 fee can be added to the installation rent and cost of a hardwired smoke detector or a smoke/carbon monoxide detector.

Rent increases requiring LAHD approval

  • Capital Improvement Program: Landlords can recoup the costs of improvements to a rental unit or common areas for items that benefit the tenant and will last at least five years (RAC Reg 210).

  • Basic Renovation Program: Owners can recover the costs of major renovations to building systems or to reduce exposure to hazardous materials (RAC Reg 220).

  • Seismic Retrofit Program: Landlords can recoup the costs of seismic retrofitting work mandated by Soft Story Law 183893.

  • Rehabilitation Program: Owners can recoup the costs of operating in a common unit or area to comply with an order issued by LAHD or other government entities (RAC Reg 250).

  • Fair and Reasonable Rent Increase: A landlord can apply for a rent increase when inflation-adjusted net operating income is insufficient to cover the property’s operating expenses (RAC Reg 240).

  • Welfare Exemption: A landlord can apply for an exemption from the RSO if they can determine the monthly rent charged on or before May 31, 1978*.

How to calculate the increase in rents and surcharges.

Required registration and notification for RSO rental units

  • If the status of a previously exempt unit changes, the property owner must notify the LAHD and pay the applicable fee within 10 days.

Legal reasons for eviction

The tenant is wrong

  • Non-payment of rent

  • Failure to fix or remedy a lease breach

  • Causing nuisance or damage to the rental unit

  • Using the rental unit for an illegal purpose

  • Non-renewal of a similar lease

  • Failure to provide the owner with reasonable access to the rental unit

  • The person at the end of the lease term is a sub-tenant who is not approved by the landlord

The tenant is not at fault

  • The landlord or immediate family member moves into the rental unit

  • A resident manager will move to the rental unit

  • Demolition and permanent removal from the rental market

  • government decree

  • Transformation into affordable housing

Types of evictions that require payment of assistance in tenant resettlement

Error-free evictions checklist

Keep your property in good condition

Learn about city regulations that protect the health, safety, and well-being of residents and whether your property meets the city’s standards.

Owner’s services

We provide services to landlords that include rent stability law workshops, online bill payment, and foreclosed property registration online, to name a few.

If my property is not stable for rent

Even if your property is not covered by the Tenancy Stability Act, you and your tenants have rights and responsibilities under California law.

Learn more about the Tenancy Stability Law

What’s New – Rental Stability Update

What’s New – Rental stability update in Spanish

A guide for renters and landlords in Los Angeles

Schedule of free informational workshops RSO

Reply now to reserve a place at the various RSO workshops held across the city.

View the department’s events calendar.

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