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By Jim McBurney, via Apartment Owner’s Association (AOA) Few apartment owners or property managers realize that it’s not possible to replace their mailboxes by searching online for equipment [that looks like what’s there now] and ordering and installing it. This is because the mailboxes installed before 1999 are probably illegal, not security-compliant, not-repairable and may even be owned by the Post Office that doesn’t sell them anymore. This is because in April 2012, the Postal Operations Manual PO 631.441 became effective and the USPS … READ MORE

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By Danielle Leidner-Peretz, Esq. Director, Government Affairs and External Relations, AAGLA This month’s update reflects the discussions and issues that have advanced related to rent control, tenant relocation benefits, tenant anti-harassment, tenant/landlord mediation and mandatory seismic retrofitting proposed or passed ordinances in several local jurisdictions. These issues will continue to spread throughout cities across California, necessitating continued vigilance on the part of the multifamily rental housing industry to ensure that our voices and concerns are heard and addressed… READ MORE

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By Hon. Roderick Wright via AAGLA Housing in California, particularly the lack of affordable housing is a complex issue. Like most social problems, there are numerous causes and villains. The solutions are usually simple, but the political will is challenging. Why don’t we simply build more apartments and houses, ,simple enough right? Guess what? There area those who benefit from the current situation. In many instances, the people complaining on one side are contributing to the problem they are protesting… READ MORE

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May 2019 – California’s New Balcony Inspection Law

By Shari Fykes, Client Manager via AAGLA On June 16, 2015, six people died, and seven others were injured in a tragic residential balcony collapse in Berkeley, California. Structural analysis revealed that the wood framing of the balcony was severely weakened by dry rot from rainwater penetration due to improper sealing of the balcony to the building. In response, California enacted Bill 721 (“The Balcony Bill” or SB 721”) on September 17, 2018… READ MORE

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May 2019 – Local Government Update

By Danielle Lender-Peretz, Esq., Director, Government Affairs & External Relations, AAGLA “…Los Angeles County - Extension of Rent Freeze, Just Cause Eviction, and infrastructure for Permanent Rent Control…on Tuesday, April 10th the LA County Board of Supervisors voted (4-1) in favor of extending the interim ordinance limiting rent increases in the unincorporated areas of the county to the end of 2019. Supervisor Barger was the only vote in opposition to the extension. The interim rent cap extension adopted limits rent increases to 3% and prohibits more than one rent increase with any 12-month period. In addition to extending the rent freeze, Board Supervisors expanded the applicability of “just cause” eviction requirements to all residential rental property, including single-family homes and condominiums…READ MORE

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May 2019 – Building Owners Dragging Their Feet on Seismic Retrofit Law

By Ali Sahabi, Optimum Seismic via AAGLA “It’s been three years since the City of Los Angeles started sending out orders requiring seismic retrofitting of vulnerable soft story and non-ductile concrete buildings. Soft-Story property owners, upon receipt of these official notices, were required to: - Submit proof of previous retrofit, or plans to retrofit or demolish (within 2 years) - Obtain a permit to start construction or demolition (within 3.5 years) - Complete retrofit construction (within 7 years) Given these deadlines and the three years that have transpired since the first orders were mailed, what percentage of the city’s vulnerable soft-story buildings have been retrofitted so far? City officials were briefed last month that only 14 percent of soft-story buildings have been retrofitted …READ MORE

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May 2019 – Sounding the Alarm: A New “Split Roll” Initiative Threatens Businesses and Jobs in California

By Susan Shelley, Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association via AAGLA Ever since Proposition 13 was passed with the support of nearly two-thirds of California votes in 1978, “reforming” Proposition 13 has been a high priority for the state’s powerful public employee unions and others who see California property owners as an untapped source of government spending money. They were trying to replace Proposition 13 before it even passed. Sharing space on the same ballot was a rival measure, a “reform” hastily cooked up by then Governor Jerry Brown…READ MORE

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By Karen Jordan, CoStar, via AAGLA Los Angeles landlords may no longer be able to turn away renters who have Section 8 subsidized-housing vouchers, the latest municipality to take such a step in hopes of addressing the rising cost of housing. The Los Angeles City Council voted 12-0 Wednesday in favor of drafting an ordinance that would prevent landlords from rejecting renters who receive Section 8 federal subsidies, which provide housing assistance payments to landlords on behalf of renters from low-income families as well as the elderly and disabled. If the ordinance is approved, the rule would go into effect Jan. 1, 2020. “We have a significant barrier to affordable housing in this city and that is the denial of people who have Section 8 vouchers who are eligible to be renters in a building who are denied... Read More

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By Marika Erdely, MBA, LEED AP BD+C The State of California has a regulation, AB802, which requires annual energy reporting for buildings over 50,000 square feet. For multifamily buildings with 17 or more residential meters, reports are due this June, 2019, and public disclosure begins in September, 2020. For commercial buildings with no residential meters, benchmarking reports are due this June. Public disclosure begins September, 2019. Noncompliance for either regulation could result in fees to the owner. Phase One of the City of LA’s, new Existing Buildings Energy and Water Efficiency (EBEWE) Ordinance requires all multi-family and commercial buildings over 20,000 square feet to disclose their energy and water usage annually beginning on June 1, 2019. EBEWE also mandates public disclosure. Starting in 2020, Phase Two of these requirements mandates buildings to either be audited or meet certain energy efficiency achievements or reduce their energy and water usage every 5 years. It is the building owner’s responsibility to comply with these new disclosure laws. Say you own a commercial or multifamily building and you receive a notice from the Department of Building and Safety that you need to comply with EBEWE - what comes next? The energy disclosure reports are known as Energy Star “Benchmarking.” This means uploading at least twelve months of tenant and common area utility data to the Energy Star software, which creates and submits an Energy Star Report to the city or state. This report generates an Energy Star Score. This “score” can range from 1-100, 100 being the most energy efficient score, and is an indicator of how your building’s energy consumption compares to similar buildings. The software also provides Energy Utilization Index (EUI) scores, which are compared against the latest Commercial Building Energy Consumption Survey (CBECS). For AB802, compliance ends here. For EBEWE, just the report isn’t enough. After the report is complete, buildings must undergo an energy audit and retro-commissioning. However, there are many exemptions your building can meet in order to avoid the audit and retro-commissioning, such as reaching an Energy Star Score of 75 or reducing your Source Energy Use Intensity (EUI) by 15% compared to utility data from five years prior to the building’s compliance date. With June only two months away, it can be overwhelming to think about how soon your building’s Energy Star report is due and what could happen if you don’t submit it, or submit it incorrectly. Green EconoME is here to help lift that weight off your shoulders and to make your property more energy efficient and more valuable to tenants and investors. Green EconoME is a woman-owned, multi-disciplinary energy consulting and construction firm providing full scale energy efficiency services to diverse public and private sector clients. We approach every project from a financial perspective, recommending energy efficiency measures only when they make financial and sustainable sense. We want to help you profit from the many incentives that come along when transforming into a more energy efficient building, such as lower utility bills, incentives from utility providers, longer leases, higher market value, and so much more. If you receive a notice that your building must comply with either of these regulations, send us an email or give us a call. Green EconoME have benchmarked over 800 properties and are always looking to explore new opportunities and new technologies that are both energy and financially-friendly!, tel 818-681-5750. To learn more go to the FAQ page at Read More

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