A study from Legal Templates shows a 76% rise in rent increase notices in California in 2022. The study also shows late rent notices increased by 134% in the state during 2022.
"We're seeing a dramatic uptick in rents and requests for homeless prevention assistance," said Janna Nichols, 5Cities Homeless Coalition Executive Director.
Nichols says they're seeing rent increases from $150 to $300 a month on average and receiving an average of five additional calls for help each day. Nichols says about 75% of the calls they receive are about increased rent.
"We had an 83-year-old veteran call us this week. His rent is going up from $1,100 to $2,100," Nichols said.
The 5Cities Homeless Coalition has grant funding available to assist those who qualify with rent payments.
"It's not just people who are, for example, underemployed. They're just simply experiencing a change in budgeting that they can't account for," Nichols said.
Ken Triguero, People's Self-Help Housing President and CEO, says there weren't very many rent increases during the pandemic and now landlords are catching up.
"It's having a fairly negative impact on them, especially since all of the other costs in their household are going up too," Trigueiro said.
He says the rent increases are pushing many people to their financial limits and many applicants at People's Self-Help Housing are close to not being able to pay their rent.
"All the other costs that are going up for gas and food, there's just no more income left," Trigueiro said.
He says costs are escalating at a faster pace than wage adjustments.
"In terms of stopping rent increases, there's not an option," said Sadie Weller, San Luis Obispo Legal Assistance Foundation Staff Attorney.
However, if a rent increase exceeds the limit of the Tenant Protection Act you can reach out to the San Luis Obispo Legal Assistance Foundation.
"If the tenant is covered by that law we could contact the landlord and let them know this is not a legal rent," Weller said.
According to California Tenant Protections, "Renters eligible for protection under the Tenant Protection Act are protected against rent increases that exceed 10% in a one-year period or the cost of living + 5%, whichever is lower."
To calculate that cost increase to make sure you aren't being overcharged for rent, click here.
To contact the 5Cities Homeless Coalition to see if you qualify for a housing grant call (805) 574-1638 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.