The California Legislature adopted the Ellis Act in 1985 after the California Supreme Court ruled that landlords do not have the right to evict tenants to go out of the rental business. It was originally passed to protect "mom and pop" landlords who could no longer tend to their rental property.
But, the intent of the Ellis Act has been corrupted by large developer whose sole objective is to acquire rent control housing, destroy it, evict tenants and replace the existing housing with high-priced luxury housing. Studies have documented that many of the Ellis Act evictions are being done by developers who have owned the property less than a year.
The Ellis Act has resulted in the loss of tens of thousands of affordable rent control units, the gentrification of neighborhoods, and the displacement of tenants throughout California.
There is a great need to build new affordable housing. At the same time we must preserve our existing affordable housing stock. Unless decision-makers understand that we need to do both, preserve and produce, we will be doomed to a failed housing policy and our crisis will get worse.
The Ellis Act is one of the greatest impediments to addressing our affordable housing needs. The Ellis Act Must Go!
In the City of Los Angeles, from 2001 through March, 2016, 20,000 rent control units were destroyed due to the Ellis Act. This has brought great hardship to low and moderate income tenants, seniors, disabled and working families. This has further exacerbated L.A.'s already existing affordable housing crisis.
The Los Angeles-based, tenants' rights organization, Coalition for Economic Survival (CES) has been organizing tenants to call for legislation to amend the Ellis Act and protect renters' and their housing. CES, aided by the San Francisco-based Anti-Eviction Mapping Project, is presenting this map to visually show the devastating impact the Ellis Act has had on the City of Los Angeles. It is time that the Ellis Act is amended or eliminated!