Hi Dan:
I wanted to send you an email to let you know I’ve been a very satisfied client of yours since 2014 or 2015. How great is it to hear something positive in this unprecedented, trying crisis? This is the time, more than ever before, that I look to AOA and Rebecca particularly, for guidance.
I was a newbie to the residential rental market when I purchased (utilizing a 1031 exchange) an 8 unit building in 2013 at 1451 Hi Point St, L.A, CA 90035. I had the good fortune to have one of my calls, in my early years, picked up by Rebecca, lucky me. Whenever I call and she happens to be busy, I wait for her. 

The consistent guidance that Rebecca has provided over the years has been OUTSTANDING. I consider myself to be a superb landlord due to your forms, letters and her guidance. I’ve navigated numerous issues successfully that I would have never been able to do alone. Rebecca is a steady, no nonsense, and helpful guide with full knowledge of the law as it relates to being a landlord. I enjoy working with her and did I mention I so appreciate her wicked sense of humor? She is a MAJOR asset to your company, a real gem.
Thank you for keeping us informed and for providing me with my absolutely most favorite person, Rebecca.      

Stay safe, Elaine J.

 

Hello Dan:

Thank you for all the work you do for the Housing Industry and your enthusiasm of fighting the unfairness of the local governments. 

My wife and I are retired – I am nearing 70 years old and she is 67. We are both immigrants (refugees) from the former Soviet Union and moved to  the USA on its 200 anniversary in 1976  We each put in more than 40 years of work in this country paying for the pensions of the City mayors and City Councilmen/women.

We managed to save some money to purchase a older 14-unit apartment building in Van Nuys in hopes to provide us some security for our older years. 

The State of California (specifically the City of L.A.) is looking more and more like the country that we came from – total disrespect to private property and entrepreneurship and the politicians are mostly on lookout for their democratic votes neglecting the principles of capitalism, free enterprise and the respect for private property.

Here is what we sense from our tenants – some of them (not all) feel like they have the legal right not to pay (and unfortunately, that is definitely so). Why would they pay?  They will just move out after a long eviction process with a lot of months (if not years) of free rent.

Finally, the City leaders are lawless and shameless and fearless, as they are the creators and rulers of the new “post-common sense” thinking.  Hopefully, justice will prevail … (if it exists)

Regards, Edward & Sophia G.

 

Dear Dan:

It was a pleasure speaking with you last week concerning the video event and directing me as to how to contribute online. I will make an additional $500 contribution by the end of the day to the PAC. If you can’t be a soldier doing the fighting, it’s just as important to supply the soldiers doing the fighting. Have a good day. 

Tony M.

 

Dear Chief Justice Cantil-Sakauye and Members of the Judicial Council:
I urge you all to repeal the current ban on evictions.  Here is my story and my plea to you: 

Los Angeles City Housing is asking me to move hot water heaters from a certain location. They do not care that the hot water heaters were at that same location in 2001, and were there in 2004 (during a city inspection), 2009(during a city inspection), 2012 (during a city inspection), and 2015 (during a city inspection). According this new the inspection report, the previous inspectors did not know the code. 

 In addition, I hired a licensed plumber to pull a permit for a new hot water heater install in 2008 and the L.A. City Department of Building and Safety approved the complexion of the installation. I did not know Zoning would not approve this install. 

The Los Angeles Health Department has asked me rectify a complaint with an occupant. This occupant moved in because the resident that I had a contract with passed earlier in the year. 
LA DWP has sent a bill that is 30% higher because I have a resident that has an unauthorized tenant. 

The Los Angeles city tax office is requesting payment, though I cannot ask for tenants to pay rent. 

How can I rectify these issues if I am not able to collect rent or run my business?

I’m having a difficult time trying to keep up with the city requests and not able to have money to make these requests.  

Diop B.

 

Dear Chief Justice Cantil-Sakauye and Members of the Judicial Council:
I urge you all to repeal the current ban on evictions.  Here is my story and my plea to you: 

We have three tenants that are not paying rent, but are also going to work every day.  Two of them are Port of LA longshoremen and making very good money, but they feel they don’t have to pay because they know we can’t take them to court to evict them.  They are simply scamming the system.

The other tenant is still working a well but told the owner that he can get a Forbearance and just pay his payments in 30 years when the loan is due, therefore the tenant doesn’t have to pay rent.  Again, we have no recourse and the tenant knows it.

Please open the courts ASAP so we can at least have some teeth to get our owner’s paid their rents so the owners can keep current on their mortgages.  

Thank you.  Richard D.

 

Dear Chief Justice Cantil-Sakauye and Members of the Judicial Council:

I urge you all to repeal the current ban on evictions.  By banning all evictions, property owners cannot remove tenants who should be removed.  Currently, tenants are taking advantages of the laws that have been put in place regarding Covid-19.  

I want you to know, the vast majority of my tenants are actually hard working, good, and honest people.  However, there are always a couple of bad apples in the bunch.  And those bad apples can and will take advantage of the system.  Today, the system is set up so the tenants have all the power.  They do not have to pay rent and yet there is nothing the landlord can really do about it in today’s environment.  So, if one tenant does not pay and tells his neighbor and that neighbor tells another tenant and so on then pretty soon you end up with half the building not paying their rent.  Over time, when the unemployment checks stop coming in then this is the scenario.   So, from the renter’s viewpoint this is a great deal …  right now … no rent and they are getting paid to stay home.  They are being enriched by the system.

From the landlord’s viewpoint, the landlord cannot enforce his rental contract which was signed and agreed to by the tenant.  Yet, the landlord must continue to provide water, trash service, cleaning, gardening and overall maintenance of the property without the rental income which was agreed to by the tenants.   So, what is the landlord to do?  Should the landlord have to carry the burden that the state imposed upon him?  What about the landlord’s property taxes and insurance?  Who is going to help the landlord with all of his expenses?  Many landlords have mortgages on their properties.  If the rental income does not come in then how can landlords afford to pay their mortgage, property taxes, insurance, maintain the property, pay for utilities, etc.  The landlords will either sell their property at a huge loss or simply walk away from the property.  You will have an increase in foreclosures and what will it do to the condition of the properties?  Landlords will do the absolute minimum to keep their units habitable.  No improvements will be made.  For example, no painting, no re-piping, no remodeling, no nothing.  So, the buildings will become run down and that will be bad for the city and the economy because the landlord will employ the fewest number of people.  And if the landlord walks away from the building then who will pay for the most basic things like the water and trash?

Also, not sure you thought of this, but if landlords cannot legally go after their rents then the landlords will make claims to their insurance carriers for loss of rent.   If this happens and the insurance carriers have to pay their claims and the insurance carriers would be deeply hurt.  Over a long enough time, it may even bankrupt various insurance carriers.  So, really to not allow evictions has a strong effect on many people and business.

Finally, if you keep the ban on evictions, one day the landlords will file a class action lawsuit against the government.  When this happens and if the landlords prevail, it may bankrupt the state of California alone.  I think you know there are certainly risks of litigation to the state of California if you continue to take this position on evictions.  When the government tries to step into and change the terms of the contract between two individuals and also does not allow due process, in my opinion there is a valid and strong case against the state of California.   

Thank you for your time.  George A.

 

Dear County Supervisors:
I just read an alert about proposals on your Tuesday, May 12 Agenda, and nearly fell out of my chair.
1.  Extend Eviction Moratorium to August 31, 2020:  That would be April, May, June, July and August 2020. Do you sincerely believe that an apartment owner can run a building without collecting rents for five months? Moreover, do you believe tenants’ can ever repay a backlog of five months’ rent? What are you thinking? If a tenant cannot pay rent after April and May, they must move on, as they might in any economic downturn. They can double up in units, move back with relatives, move out of State, perhaps find government subsidies (that IS some the Board can do something about). This proposal is truly without merit.
2.  Classify Deferred Unpaid Rent as Consumer Debt:  Well that’s a good one. I understand what you are really looking for is cancelling the rent, but this proposal is that, in disguise. Tenants, generally, when behind in rent, ultimately vacate. Suing for the money is futile. This money will not be collectable. You are legalizing stealing. Perhaps I can go to the supermarket and take five months’ of groceries and promise to pay them back some day? You must be kidding.
3.  The other two proposals, Private Right of Action for Renters, and First Right of Purchase, are just as daft, and likely unconstitutional.
Tenants and owners are not adversaries. We almost always work well together. This Board is simply stirring up trouble between the parties. Can’t you just leave us all alone? We’ll figure it out, without your help or interference!

I would very much appreciate a reply to this email (not a canned one please)

Respectfully, Lawrence Rubenstein, Ph.D.

Open Letter to County Board of Supervisors:

I am a small time property owner who has worked hard to maintain my apartment and protect the residents who live there. Due to coronavirus, I have incurred substantial costs to disinfect the doorknobs, stairway rails, and mailboxes several times per day.  I’ve hired extra cleaning personnel to keep up essential health related maintenance issues without passing these costs to the tenants.    The ordinance proposed by the Board prevents me from working with my tenants to develop a plan through which we can all come out of this crisis and continue our lives.   

I already have a sizeable number of tenants who did not pay the rent last month.  In a best case scenario, this emergency order won’t be lifted until June 30th.  By that time, the tenants will have deferred three months of rent.  If they avoid paying back rent for another 12 months, they will simply walk away from the debt at the last moment, leaving me no remedy to collect.  There will be no eviction on their record and I will have lost at least three months’ rent.

Neither my bank nor I can afford to wait 12 months.   The worst part of this plan is that the lenders won’t wait that long to be paid.  The 12 month repayment plan will be too late to save my rental units from foreclosure.   Lenders have unlimited lawyers to protect their interests and I’ll be mired in tons of paperwork which I have to correctly sign in order to defer mortgage payments.   My loan payments may be deferred, but the lender ALWAYS has the last recourse when they use the court system to foreclose and seize my building.   A city of bank-foreclosed properties similar to what happened in Detroit is a frightening prospect.  

No one runs a building better than the owner and you need to protect housing providers rather than penalizing them.   I am willing to defer rent for a little while, but being forced to wait a whole year to recoup losses would leave me unable to pay the mortgage, the plumbers, trash collector, water company or anyone else who services the units. If they don’t get paid, the economic damage will continue to snowball as people refuse to take risks or even purchase in an unstable economy.  

This disease was not caused by tenants or landowners.  Yet, the proposals I’ve heard target landowners who merely want to provide housing for tenants.  It seems that a much fairer solution would be for the County to simply pay the tenant’s rent and pass the costs on to everyone.   

The 12 month proposal is like placing a Band-Aid on a leaking dike.   The County need to focus on solving the crisis before the dike fails, ushering an economic calamity which cannot be stopped.     

Sincerely, Rex N.