Mountain View Tenants Coalition

A letter for your landlord explaining your right to reduced rent under Measure V

With voter approval of Measure V, many households in Mountain View now qualify for a reduction in rent.

Thanks to our lawyers you can now click here or here to download and print a letter to send along with your rent on January 1, 2017. It explains to your landlord or property manager why you are paying reduced rent as specified in Measure V, which goes into effect on Dec. 23. There are two versions in the document, depending on when you moved into your apartment. Fill in and print the one that applies to your situation.

MAKE SURE YOUR APARTMENT QUALIFIES. You must live in an apartment building built before Feb. 1, 1995 with three units or more. Condos are exempt.

To find your apartment’s construction year, type your apartment building’s street address into the search bar on one of the following sites: zillow.com, redfin.com, trulia.com. The year of construction should come up. City staff are also working on a list of qualifying apartments.

How to determine your lawful rent for January 2017:

  • If you moved into your apartment before Oct. 19, 2015, when you pay your January 2017 rent, you can legally pay the amount in effect in Oct. 2015.
  • If you moved into your apartment after Oct. 19, 2015, you can pay the amount you were charged for rent when you first moved in.

FAQs 

What if my landlord insists on unlawful rent? If your landlord gives you a “three day notice to pay or quit” in response to your reduced January rent payment, you have options:

  • Pay the higher, unlawful amount right away (within the 3 days). Keep payment records so you can petition the rental housing committee for a refund and rent reduction.
  • Do nothing. Your landlord may serve you with eviction (“unlawful detainer”) court papers. If you receive those papers, you can defend yourself, but you have only five days to submit papers to the court. Call one of the phone numbers below for legal help right away:
 Law Foundation of Silicon Valley: 408-280-2424, Bay Area Legal Aid: 408-850-7066, Asian Law Alliance: 408-287-9710, Project Sentinel: 650-282-2514 

Does the rent rollback still apply if I signed a new lease for higher rent since October 2015? We think you have a strong argument that it does. If your landlord disagrees, seek legal help.

Will I get a refund for rent I paid between October 2015 and January 2017 ? No. Measure V was not intended to provide a refund on rent paid before it took effect.

More questions? Contact City Hall: (650) 903-6379 or neighborhoods@mountainview.gov. Or watch mountainview.gov and mvtenantscoalition.org for updates and more info. 

Disclaimer: MVTC intends to provide accurate information about what Measure V means for tenants in Mountain View. However, because Measure V is brand new, and all laws can be subject to different interpretations, MVTC cannot be responsible for any use to which the information on this website is put. Do not rely on this information without consulting an attorney or the appropriate agency about your rights in your particular situation.

Eviction protections are in effect! Rent reductions coming soon!

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Thanks to a large community organizing effort, a historic victory has been won for Mountain View! Measure V goes into effect on December 23, 2016, and will limit rent increases on pre-1995 apartments and protect against no cause evictions. To prevent evictions before then, the City Council has approved an emergency ordinance to make Measure V’s “Just Cause for Eviction” protections effective immediately.

Know your rights!

Evictions: Your landlord now needs to state one of the 9 “just causes” listed in Measure V in any termination notice or notice to vacate (if you live in an apartment building with three units or more). Only condos, duplexes, single family homes and post 2016 apartments are exempt from this. If you received a notice to vacate (60-day or 30-day) — even if it was before Nov. 15 — you should contact one of the legal resources listed below as soon as possible for help. If you have been served “unlawful detainer” court papers, don’t wait!

 Law Foundation of Silicon Valley: 408-280-2424, Bay Area Legal Aid: 408-850-7066, Asian Law Alliance: 408-287-9710, Project Sentinel: 650-282-2514 

Rent Rollback: Many households will qualify for a rent reduction when Measure V takes effect on Dec. 23. You must live in an apartment building built before Feb. 1, 1995 with three units or more. If you moved into your apartment before Oct. 19, 2015, when you pay your January 2017 rent, you can legally pay the amount in effect in Oct. 2015. If you moved into your apartment after Oct. 19, 2015, you can pay the amount you were charged for rent when you first moved in. 

New! Click here to download and print a letter you can send to your landlord along with your January 2017 rent explaining the rent rollback. 

FAQs 

What if my landlord insists on unlawful rent? If your landlord gives you a “three day notice to pay or quit” in response to your reduced January rent payment, you have options:

  • Pay the higher, unlawful amount right away (within the 3 days). Keep payment records so you can petition the rental housing committee for a refund and rent reduction.
  • Do nothing. Your landlord may serve you with eviction (“unlawful detainer”) court papers. If you receive those papers, you can defend yourself, but you have only five days to submit papers to the court. Call one of the phone numbers above for legal help right away.

Does the rent rollback still apply if I signed a new lease for higher rent since October 2015? We think you have a strong argument that it does. If your landlord disagrees, seek legal help.

Will I get a refund for rent I paid between October 2015 and January 2017 ? No. Measure V was not intended to provide a refund on rent paid before it took effect.

How do I figure out when my apartment was built? Type your apartment building’s street address into the search bar on one of the following sites: zillow.com, redfin.com, trulia.com. The year of construction should come up. A list of qualifying apartments is in the works.

More questions? Contact City Hall: (650) 903-6379 or neighborhoods@mountainview.gov. Or watch mountainview.gov and mvtenantscoalition.org for updates and more info.

Disclaimer: MVTC intends to provide accurate information about what Measure V means for tenants in Mountain View. However, because Measure V is brand new, and all laws can be subject to different interpretations, MVTC cannot be responsible for any use to which the information on this website is put. Do not rely on this information without consulting an attorney or the appropriate agency about your rights in your particular situation.

Help us get the word out! Click here to print this as a flyer.

Please vote as our new flyer suggests! Thanks!

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New YES on V website is up

Yesonvmv.org is now up! Check out the official page of Mountain View’s YES on Measure V campaign.

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Mountain View family endorses YES on V

Chris, a paramedic, and Angelica, a student, have three daughters and a supportive community in Mountain View. Measure V provides stable and predictable housing costs for families like theirs.

Vote “Yes” on Measure V

Our ballot statement is in. Vote YES on V

 

ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF MEASURE V

Vote YES on Measure V to protect Mountain View from the biggest threat facing our community: skyrocketing rents. Hard working families are losing their homes. Valued teachers, nurses, and tech employees are leaving Mountain View as rents become unaffordable.

To landlords who keep rents reasonable, thank you! Vote YES on Measure V to stop opportunistic rent increases and unwarranted evictions by others.

Measure V makes housing costs predictable and stable, freeing seniors and others from constant fear of losing their homes. Rents have skyrocketed 54% since 2012. Wages have not kept pace, putting profound stress on our community. As we lose beloved family and community members, we lose Mountain View’s quality of life.

Vote YES on Measure V to protect over 14,000 renting households, while being fair to landlords:

  • Allows rents to be raised 2 to 5% annually, depending on the rate of inflation (typically 2 to 3%);
  • Allows larger rent increases for increased maintenance costs or property taxes or if a landlord skips a year;
  • Limits evictions to specific situations (unpaid rent, illegal activity, etc.), preventing evictions just to raise rents;
  • Protects families too frightened to report unsafe conditions for fear of retaliatory evictions;
  • Exempts all units built after February 1, 1995, as well as all single-family homes, duplexes, condos and in-law units, and all new housing (does not discourage growth);
  • Rolls rents back to October 2015 levels;
  • Creates an independent Committee to administer and enforce the law, providing flexibility, accountability and transparency;
  • Allows the creation of similar protections for mobile home residents.

For many hard working families, Measure V is their last hope to remain a part of our community. Measure V is our chance to protect our community and quality of life.

Join teachers, tech employees, nurses, landlords, retirees, homeowners and the Mountain View Tenants Coalition in voting YES on Measure V.

Vote YES to protect Mountain View’s future. Vote YES on Measure V.

Monique Kane
Landlord, former director of Mountain View’s CHAC
Ayindé Rudolph
Superintendent of the Mountain View Whisman School District
Lenny Siegel
Homeowner, Mountain View City Council member
Michael Love
Pastor of Mountain View’s Trinity United Methodist Church
Evan Ortiz
Mountain View Human Relations Commissioner (title for indentification only)

PBS NewsHour covers MV’s RV dwellers

PBS NewsHour puts the national spotlight on the increasing number of people living in RVs in Mountain View. Most of these folks used to rent or own homes in Mountain View, according to a recent report from the city. This is why we must Vote YES on Measure V.

KQED’s amazing video about our rent control campaign

“I often feel like there’s a black cloud hanging over us- it’s kind of a renter’s anxiety that a lot of people that I know who live in Mountain View have- that our days are numbered…” – Stacy Dow

Rent stabilization qualifies for the ballot in Mountain View!

The Santa Clara County Registrar’s Office has notified the proponents of Mountain View’s rent control (rent stabilization) initiative that it has qualified for the November ballot.

The Mountain View Tenants Coalition submitted 7,311 signatures, and at least 4,671 were found valid, enough to qualify the Community Stabilization and Fair Rent Act for a city-wide vote on Nov. 8.

The news came as the grassroots campaign prepared for a rally and a big City Council meeting on July 14. Over 100 volunteers helped gather the signatures.

“Our rally today will also be a celebration” said founding MVTC member Joan MacDonald.  “While we were very confident we had submitted sufficient signatures, it is still a big step forward for the campaign to receive certification from the County.”

“Today is a historic day – the people’s initiative for rent stabilization in Mountain View has qualified for the ballot!” said Daniel DeBolt, MVTC member. “How ironic that this happens on the very day that the City Council  is considering “options” and “alternatives” that could only undermine our efforts. Given the council’s opposition to meaningful renter protections earlier this year, any support for a competing set of renter protections by the council is disingenuous.”

At a public meeting scheduled for Aug. 9, the Mountain View Tenants Coalition will continue to push the Council to refrain from placing a competing measure on the ballot, so that the will of the community can be clearly determined in the November election.