According to an article in the San Francisco Chronicle, both property prices and evictions in the city are on the increase. A new report has found the number of evictions in the city has increased substantially over the past few years, and this is particularly true when the evictions lead to rental units coming off the rental market so they can be sold.
The number of Ellis Act evictions in the city increased by 170% between March 2010 and February 2013, but in comparison the number of all types of evictions has increased by 38%. During this time frame property prices have increased by 22%. Ellis Act evictions are popular amongst landlords who want to get rid of tenants in order to sell the rental unit, and it is thought the substantial increase in this type of action is due in part to the huge decline in Ellis Act evictions that was initially seen after the financial crisis in 2009. The following year the number of these evictions dropped below 100, the first time this has happened in 10 years, but have been steadily increasing ever since. Even so the number of Ellis Act evictions is still not as high as in 2000 when it reached 384.
Most of these types of evictions are centered on a few neighborhoods where prices have risen substantially. Top of the list is the Mission District where prices have increased by nearly 30% over the past three years. Other areas that have seen a substantial increase in Ellis Act evictions include North Beach, the Haight Ashbury/Western Addition, the Castro and Russian Hill. The number of evictions looks as if it will continue to increase.
It’s hoped this report will encourage city leaders to take action, but as yet no concrete solutions that have been put forward. At the moment landlords have to pay tenants relocation expenses, and this is currently about $5,200 per person. One suggestion is that this amount should be increased to help discourage landlords from carrying out evictions, and to help those who are evicted to stay in the city. In spite of this some people feel the numbers are not remarkable and that the number of evictions taking place is certainly not a crisis, especially when compared to the numbers seen in 2000.
San Francisco has recovered strongly during the past few years, but the housing stock in the city is considered to be inadequate. Rising house prices and rental rates is likely to put continued pressure on the market.