In the interest of protecting public health and preventing transmission of COVID-19, the State of California extended the Tenant, Homeowner, and Small Landlord Relief Act (AB 3088) on January 29, 2021. The COVID-19 Tenant Relief Act (SB 91) extends the eviction protections for residential tenants experiencing COVID-19 financial hardship effective immediately. This State law supersedes the City of Mountain View's residential eviction moratorium. Tenants are protected by, and tenants and landlords must follow, the State’s requirements and not the City’s, including the eviction moratorium extension approved by Council on August 25, 2020. The moratorium covers all residential rental units in Mountain View including single-family homes, condos/townhomes, duplexes, apartments, mobile homes and mobile home spaces and other types of residential rental units, including all rent stabilized units.
The moratorium suspends evictions for non-payment of rent through June 30, 2021. Other types of evictions, like if tenants cause a nuisance or fail to give access to the property when properly noticed, are still allowed with proper noticing. Landlords are encouraged to contact the Mountain View Rental Housing Helpline at (650) 282-2514 or email email@example.com.
SB 91 requires an informational notice to be provided on or before February 28, 2021, to all residents who, as of February 1, have one or more outstanding rental payments due on or after March 1, 2020. Landlords do not need to provide this form to residents who do not have outstanding rental payments. This form can be accessed through the State's website here.
No late fees may be assessed on past-due rent covered by the Tenant Relief Act. Tenants are protected from retaliatory evictions: This means that if a landlord alleges other grounds for eviction, but the grounds are a pretext to remove a tenant that has not paid rent due to a COVID-19 hardship, the landlord could be subject to penalties. Specifically, the tenant may stay in the unit and seek actual damages, punitive damages, and attorneys’ fees from the landlord. Any landlord who uses self-help tactics (“constructive eviction”) (e.g., changing locks, shutting off utilities, disposing of tenants’ personal property, etc.) to remove a residential tenant who has not paid rent due to a COVID-19 hardship can be subject to fines of up to $2,500 plus damages. The Tenant Relief Act prohibits retaliation or harassment against impacted tenants for invoking their rights under the State law.
Landlords and tenants are strongly encouraged to use mediation to negotiate a repayment plan. The Mountain View Mediation Program provides free and confidential mediation to assist in this process. Learn more by clicking here.
A fact sheet about the moratorium for homeowners and small landlords is available here.
For more information regarding the temporary eviction moratorium call the Mountain View Rental Housing Helpline at (650) 282-2514 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Register here for landlord focused webinars about the eviction moratorium on the following dates:
3:00 p.m.: February 9 and 23; March 2 and 30; April 27; and May 25
The City of Mountain View partnered Los Altos Community Foundation to raise and distribute donations to Mountain View community members who have been economically burdened by the COVID-19 pandemic.
There are two opportunities to help others who have been adversely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic: rent relief and small business relief. Rent relief donations will be added to the funds the City has already given to the Community Services Agency (CSA) to expand help for local tenants in need. Small business relief donations will be combined with funds allocated by the City and a donation from Google. Visit #TogetherMV to support the community.
The City of Mountain View COVID-19 Rent Relief Program provides up to $3,000 per month of rental assistance for up to two months for qualifying Mountain View tenants impacted by COVID-19. The Community Services Agency (CSA) administers the program.
To apply, contact CSA via email at RentHelp@CSACares.org or call (650) 968-0836 to leave a voicemail. Email inquiries are preferred. CSA staff will respond as quickly as possible but please be patient. Households who apply after the program reaches maximum capacity will be added to a waitlist and contacted if additional funding becomes available.
The CA COVID-19 Rent Relief program is designed to help low-income Californians through the payment of unpaid rent to landlords. Tenants and landlords are able to apply for assistance through this program. Visit the State's website to learn more and to apply for the program.
Santa Clara County has also set-up a Rent Relief Fund. Eligible households can add their names to an interest list and will be contacted when more funding is available. For more information, visit sacredheartcs.org/covid19/.