The purpose of the Rent Stabilization Ordinance is to protect tenants from excessive rent increases, while at the same time allowing landlords a reasonable return on their investments. The Rent Stabilization Ordinance is Chapter XV of the Los Angeles Municipal Code.
Residential rental units covered by the RSO include:
- town homes
- two or more dwelling units on the same lot
- mobile homes
- mobile home pads
- rooms in a hotel, motel, rooming house or boarding house occupied by the same tenant for 30 or more consecutive days [Changed from 60 to 30 days pursuant to Ordinance 176472, Adopted February 1, 2005; Effective March 26, 2005. Council File 03-1517.]
To be subject to the RSO of the City of Los Angeles, a property must meet the following three criteria:
- The property must be within the City of Los Angeles; and
- There must be two or more units on the lot; and
- The building must have a Certificate of Occupancy issued on or before October 1, 1978. (In the case of mobile homes and mobile home pads, the park must have been issued a permit to operate before February 10, 1986).
Properties exempt from the RSO are as follows:
- Properties located in other municipalities or within unincorporated areas within the County of Los Angeles;
- Single family dwellings, used as such;
- Properties (except mobile homes and mobile home pads) with a Certificate of Occupancy issued after October 1, 1978 (new construction);
- Mobile homes or mobile home pads when the park was issued a permit to operate after February 10, 1986;
- Government owned properties;
- Units occupied by an owner or family member where no rents are collected;
- Vacant units (10 days to register upon rental of the property);
- Properties permanently removed from the rental market;
- Luxury Housing Accommodations issued a Department Certificate;
- Demolished RSO properties;
- Hotel/Motels - with tenancy under 30 days [Changed from 60 to 30 days pursuant to Ordinance 176472, Adopted February 1, 2005; Effective March 26, 2005. Council File 03-1517.];
- Non-profit owner units, with certain qualifications.
Even if a unit is not covered under the Rent Stabilization Ordinance, renters and landlords still have rights and responsibilities under California law. For more information, see A Guide to Residential Tenants' and Landlords' Rights and Responsibilities published by the State of California - Department of Consumer Affairs.
The Rent Stabilization Ordinance covers four broad categories:
- Allowable rent increases;
- Registration of rental units;
- 12 legal reasons for eviction;
- Causes for eviction requiring relocation assistance payment to the tenant.
RSO-related informational publications produced by the LAHD include the Landlord-Tenant Handbook and bulletins on various Rent Stabilization Topics.
A complaint can be filed by any tenant who believes that an owner/ manager/ agent has committed a violation of the Rent Stabilization Ordinance. To file a complaint, use one of the following methods:
- Call the Housing Department's Public Information Hotline (toll-free) at 1-866-557-RENT and request that a form be mailed to you (the form can then be returned via U.S. Mail)
- Visit one of the Housing Department's Public Counters and complete the form.
- File a complaint online.
If you have questions or need additional information, please call our Public Information Hotline at (866) 557-RENT, Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. or visit one of our Public Counters.