California voters approve new measures to combat housing shortage locally
When it comes to the California housing crisis, residents say enough is enough.
Last November, Californians voted on transformative housing measures in their cities amid a long-simmering nationwide shortage. The 2022 midterm elections highlighted growing voter resentment at the cheap price of real housing, but the results also renew optimism as the state adjusts policy for 2023 and beyond.
Voters focused their anger on issues of local zoning, taxes and homelessness. Read on for the top housing-related measures passed in major metropolitan California in November 2022. find yours service area below is a breakdown of the changes affecting your practice.
In Los Angeles, residents agreed “Yes”:
- measure LH — Provide public funds for the development of an additional 5,000 low-income rental homes per borough;
- Measure EM — Authorize Rent Control to change or refuse annual rent adjustments during a Emergency declared by LA President, Governor, Health Commissioner or City Council;
- Measure H — Adopt a rent control program that limits annual rent increases to 75% Consumer Price Index (CPI); and
- Measure RC — Require landowners to intend occupancy for at least two years, move in to evict a tenant within 60 days of vacancy, and lower the rent increase cap to 3% of the CPI.
In Orange County, voters agreed:
- measure K — Allow the City Council to pass publicly vetted land use plans to refresh areas, expand lower- and middle-tier housing, and limit building height.
At the riverbank:
In San Diego, voters secured:
- Measure B — ends free garbage collection for single-family homes; and
- Measure C – places a 30-foot. Height limit for buildings in most areas west of Interstate 5, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.
In Sacramento, residents can look forward to:
- Measure D – Allows the county to develop low-income housing at the rate of 1% of its existing housing, according to Sacramento County.
In San Francisco:
- Suggestion M – Collects a tax of $2,500 to $5,000 per vacant unit from owners vacant residential units in buildings with three or more units if the units are vacant more than 182 days per year.
Finally, Santa Clara voters said yes:
- measure M — forces a package tax $348 per package for 8 years to fund schools; and
- Measure A – adapts zoning regulations Prohibit construction with features for new storage and distribution purposes.
Editor’s Note – For a comprehensive summary of California midterm election results, see Ballotpedia.
Taken individually, these changes represent only incremental steps toward affordable decent housing for low- and middle-income earners. But taken together, these policy changes reflect residents’ stirred frustration with cities do something about housing costs. Perhaps the biggest mandate to emerge from the midterm results concerns homelessness.
California real estate: 2022 in review and a look ahead to 2023
Measures to accommodate the homeless
As home prices and sales volumes surged during the pandemic, so did the number of homeless people in California. Actually that of the state homeless population increased by 22,500 between 2019 and 2022 – a conservative figure, to be sure. But the passage of some notable housing measures in the hardest-hit counties is turning compassion into legislative action.
To ease the homelessness crisis in their counties, voters passed:
- Measure ULA in los Angeleswhich raises nearly $1 billion annually for housing and homelessness efforts by taxing real estate sales of $5 million or more;
- Dimensions in San Diegoraising sales tax by a penny to help the homelessness crisis;
- O measure in Sacramentoa new homelessness policy that mandates a minimum number of shelters based on the number of people unhoused, bans camps, and caps the city’s annual budget at $5 million;
- Measure B also in Sacramento, the introduction of a gross receipts tax on cannabis and hemp companies to fund county homeless services; and
- Suggestion C in san franciscoestablishing a Homelessness Oversight Commission to oversee the Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing, and requiring the City Inspector to conduct audits of services to people affected by homelessness.
These measures secure the financing of vital Homelessness Programs and Services, they don’t go directly to the root of the problem: California’s housing shortage. According to a landmark report by McKinsey & Company, the state is short of about 2 million units to meet demand.
Ultimately, only increasing housing stock and housing production will have a long-term material impact on the prevalence of homelessness in California neighborhoods. This means removing obstacles to the start of construction, which is sluggish into 2023.
At the municipal level, the housing shortage begins early – in the planning phase. vocal Not in my backyard (NIMBY) Proponents have long wielded excessive power in city council meetings and are killing off housing projects in their neighborhoods when more density is badly needed.
California’s new homebuilder strike force is preparing to fight — with NIMBYs
The market braces itself for repercussions
Although the state’s emergency response ended in 2022, the pandemic disorder will drag on until 2023. Agents and brokers can expect inflation, mortgage rates and shrinking sales volumes to continue to dominate the 2023 news cycle. It’s no surprise that many of the Midterm housing developments were created in response to these forces.
consider Measure EM and Measure H in Los Angeles. Both measures address rent control in response to housing price spikes that are driving gentrification across the state. As real estate and rent prices soared, many Californians lost their jobs and their ability to support housing expenses. This triggered another march past YIMBY advocate to combat restrictive housing policies in sought-after residential areas.
Housing policy, shaped by the economic lessons of the pandemic, is also finding its way into legislation at state level. Senate bill (SB) 6 and Assembly Act (AB) 2011 Encourage developers to convert office and retail space into low- and middle-income housing units.
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Legislative steps towards affordable housing