Housing crisis: Richmond District Tenants Town Hall this Saturday, 1-3pm

As the city’s rents continue to climb and landlords refuse to renew leases or engage in frivolous evictions in hopes of raising their rents for new tenants, it’s becoming harder and harder for renters in the Richmond District to hold onto their homes.

In August, the Chronicle reported that the median rent in San Francisco hit $3,530 a month for a one-bedroom apartment.

That same article, which relies on a report from Zumper, puts the median rent for a Richmond District 1-bedroom at $3,140 in the inner Richmond, and $2,800 in the outer.

In short, it sucks to be a renter right now.

Even households with healthy, dual incomes are feeling the crisis and critical populations like artists, which are crucial to the diverse character of San Francisco, are being forced out of the city. A recent survey of nearly 600 artists from the San Francisco Art Commission found that over 70 percent had been or were being displaced from their workplace, home, or both.

Students are feeling the heat as well – bunkbeds in crowded apartments (read: 30 people) are renting at $1,800 a month [CBS5].



On Wednesday, the Board of Supervisors passed new tenant protections that make it harder for landlords to raise the rent or evict tenants when they bring in roommates, harder for landlords to evict tenants for minor violations without first giving them a chance to correct the violation, and increase tenant notification requirements for such violations and evictions.

“The only way a lot of people can live in San Francisco is because they have a lot of people living in an apartment,” Supervisor David Campos, who co-sponsored the legislation, said. “That’s the way that folks are able to afford to live in San Francisco.”


This Saturday, Supervisor Eric Mar will host a “Our Richmond / No Eviction” town hall public meeting at the Richmond District Recreation Center from 1-3pm:

    Tenant rights organizations, including the Housing Rights Committee, Tenants Together, the San Francisco Community Land Trust, and ACCE, will be there to provide information on what tenants who are faced with eviction can do.

    The Our Richmond/No Eviction town hall is part of a broader strategy which includes the small sites acquisition fund, and the establishment of a Richmond District Services Center, that will include tenant counseling services, to support Richmond District residents as our neighborhood struggles with the Citywide eviction and displacement crisis.

    The displacement of families, seniors and low and moderate income residents has been growing over the past year and has to be dealt with in a multifaceted and comprehensive manner. This gathering is a great way to bring tenants together to share information and empower themselves.

The Richmond Recreation Center is located at 251 18th Avenue between California and Clement.

Sarah B.

Related: SFExaminer: Richmond district feels housing crunch


  1. Too bad I have a previous engagement as I would like to have gone to the meeting. As to the data reported on the rental costs. It is garbage in and garbage out. I know a LOT of people in the middle Richmond that have from 2 to 20 individual rental units. Not one of them reports in any way what their units rent for. I asked them to ask at the last Small Property Owners Association meeting how many of those people report in any way what they rent their places for. The answer was nobody who asked did.

    So, when a large percentage of people are not included in the price analysis, it will skew very high. Anyone making any policy issues on that data is a fool or a disciple of Joseph Goebbels School of Information.

    Now, I do think we have an issue. Unless we are willing to look very hard at restrictive zoning, then the rent affordability problem will not go away. Simple supply and demand.

  2. @JD – A lot of these high median numbers are based on listings of available rentals (not what people who currently rent are paying). Which can be a skewed perspective, but it has real consequences for someone trying to rent a place, and those that are facing a lease term ending. The market rate right now is ridiculous.

    Sarah B.

  3. Sarah B., As rent control presently stands, the end of a lease term automatically puts a rent controlled tenant under the existing lease terms on a perpetual month-to-month lease until such lease terms are amended by the Board of Supervisors. The original lease date merely serves as an anniversary date for calculating original base rent.

  4. I only just learned about this community meeting. Like JD, I definitely would have attended. Will there be a report of highlights?

  5. The world provides enough to satisfy every landlord’s need, but not every landlord’s greed!

  6. When all Richmond merchants agree to limit their annual price and/or labor increases to 60% of CPI will be the day that I agree with the rent control ordinance. The bulk of evictions involve tenants paying not just below market rate rent, but rent that has failed to keep up with inflation. If SF wants to keep these tenants in their homes, then pass a tax that affects ALL citizens to pay for it!

  7. Nothing informative will come out of this. Eric mar is a crony of campos, has little for brains and no courage. If he wanted to bring down market rate rents, he would push to get rid of rent control, or at least means test it. All of us know someone making $200k+ and milking rent control, some of them owning properties elsewhere. Means testing rent control so that no one making over median income can use it would go a long way. It should also be tied to inflation, and not .6 of inflation. People get so use to these handouts that the feel entitled to them and that affects their motivation to work harder, save more, etc. for the truly poor, it seems fair to have govt help them . For middle class, if SF is too expensive for your lifestyle, then move to San Bruno, south San Francisco, Oakland, etc. there are a myriad of cheaper options less than a 30 min BART ride away.

  8. Any word other than the one candidate mentioned about a month ago as to who might run to replace termed out Mar? Media has been silent, which does not bode well. Agree with Mike and Motor, the nut to operate my house has gone up almost 50% in the last decade, much through increased assessment for home maintenance, increased utilities provided by the city and its sole bidders as well as annual fees from the City for things required by my homeowners insurance. I know someone who has been renting in Polk Gulch for three decades who grew up out here and she was very pleased to announce this week that her rent is less than 10% of what new tenants are paying where she lives. She works for lawyers on the Peninsula and makes much more than the SF median.

  9. To follow up on my earlier comment, why would a landlord ever rent for anything less than the absolute maximum he/she could obtain? With rent control as it stands now, the real return on your investment decreases each year due to the 60% of CPI limit on increases. Even if you want to help out a particular tenant, you will then be forced to accept below market rents indefinitely. The phrase “no good deed goes unpunished” springs to mind.

    For all supporters of the current rent control structure, please honestly ask yourselves whether you would be satisfied with a salary that decreased in real terms every year.

  10. For those who believe that eliminating rent control would mellow the market – I really don’t think so! Friends in non-rent controlled buildings get notices of huge ($400-600 or more) rent increases with just a month or maybe 2 to figure out how to pay for that. I live in a 6 unit building – 2 units have been occupied for more then 8 years, the rest have all turned at least once, if not more then that in the last 8 years. So our landlord has been able to raise rents to “market” level each time one of those units turns. My previous building also had a small handful of elderly residents who probably paid 1/2 of what I did, but other units turned regularly providing the owner to increase those rents. I may make above median; but I don’t have $500 extra each month to suddenly have to pay in rent increases each year. And NO employer (private sector) pays Cost of Living increases in salary – it’s all performance based, and 3% a year is lucky.

  11. Rent control has limited increases to well below 3% since 1992. If I had a job that had increased my pay (performance based or not) at such a low rate, I would definitely reconsider my career or employer choice.

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