Recovered on behalf of a group of 30 tenants living in an SRO in San Francisco who were living with horrendous conditions in their rent controlled apartments, including rodents, bedbugs, mold, water leaks and harassment.Read More
Recovered on behalf of three families living in a building in San Francisco’s SOMA neighborhood who were forced to live with substandard conditions for years as a result of their landlord’s negligence, including issues with lack of heat, lack of hot water and cockroach/rat infestations.Read More
Recovered on behalf of a couple living in a rent-controlled home in the outer Sunset neighborhood. Our clients were forced to vacate after the landlord served them with an Owner Move-In Eviction Notice. After the landlords failed to move into the property, our clients filed suit for wrongful eviction.Read More
Recovered on behalf of a San Francisco tenant in Russian Hill. Tenant was forced to vacate her illegal apartment in retaliation for reporting unlawful rent increases to the San Francisco Rent Board.Read More
Recovered for a single long-term tenant in San Francisco. Our client was forced to move out of his apartment as a result of extreme landlord harassment.Read More
Recovered on behalf of three long-term tenants in San Francisco’s Castro neighborhood who were constructively evicted due to noise and nuisance conditions created by their downstairs neighbors, which the owner refused to address.Read More
Recovered on behalf of elderly, disabled tenant who was forced to move out of her rent-controlled San Francisco apartment of 50 years after landlord/owner failed to resolve numerous building code violations that remained outstanding for over a decade.Read More
Recovered on behalf of seven tenants living in a makeshift boarding house in East Palo Alto.Read More
Recovered on behalf of two former San Francisco tenants who were evicted via an Owner Move-In Eviction and owner failed to occupy the unit as her primary place of residence.Read More
Recovered on behalf of an elderly long-term tenant who was forced to vacate her long San Francisco apartment as a result of her landlord’s refusal to address longstanding defective conditions, including lack of heat, mold, rodent infestations, and defective plumbing. Read More
Recovered on behalf of a San Francisco tenant who was forced to vacate his home as a result of ongoing, disruptive construction and the owners’ refusal to provide him with alternative housing. Read More
Recovered on behalf of a San Francisco family that was constructively evicted from their home in the Richmond District as a result of unlawful rent increases, defective conditions and tenant harassment.Read More
Recovered on behalf of a tenant living in an illegal “in-law” unit. In this case, a new owner purchased the building and then demolished our client’s unit without permits while she was displaced for seismic retrofitting.Read More
Recovered on behalf of two long term San Francisco tenants who were fraudulently evicted from their home of over twenty years under the pretext of an owner move-in eviction.Read More
Recovered for tenant who was injured when their stairway railing collapsed at the tenant’s Mission District apartment building.Read More
Recovered in action for a group of tenants forced to vacate their San Francisco apartment house due to severe habitability defects including mold and water leaks.Read More
A buyout is when a landlord pays a tenant to move out of their rent-controlled home. This often happens when a landlord is selling a property or has just bought a building. Tenants living in rent-controlled buildings may be paying rent that is far below the market rate. Landlords are limited in how much they can raise a tenant’s rent. This in turn impacts the sale value of a property or the return on investment an owner may get. In other situations, a landlord may want to live in their building but prefer a buyout to going through an eviction process.
In cities like San Francisco, Oakland, and Berkeley, a landlord has to have a “just cause” to evict a tenant. If you have rent control your rent may be much lower than what your apartment is worth. Landlords looking to sell their building or looking to get more rent have turned to offering tenants money to move out. Often times this is a bad deal for tenants in the long run no matter how much money your landlord is offering. Because these negotiations can be complicated our office is here to help steer you through the process.
years of experience in representing tenants.
What your tenancy is “worth” can vary wildly.
How much you can get for a buyout of your apartment can vary wildly from a few thousand dollars well into the six figures. The price you arrive at will ultimately depend on strategy, needs, and relative bargaining power. Each situation is different, and we will use our expertise to help guide you through the process.
Your landlord is almost certainly looking at this as a business decision. You should too. While your landlord will eventually recoup whatever costs they incur in a buyout later on – either by charging higher rent to a new tenant or because they can sell the property at a higher price, the money you get is finite.
If you’re staying in San Francisco, you can expect your rent to be much higher if you’re moving out of a low-rent apartment. Are you going to just be handing over the money you get in a buyout to another landlord? If you’re moving out of the Bay Area then your money will of course go farther.
Does your landlord have other ways to force you to move out if you don’t negotiate a deal, such as an owner move-in eviction or Ellis Eviction? While threats of these “no fault” evictions are common in buyout negotiations, it can be difficult to know when or if your landlord is bluffing – and in certain circumstances, you may never know. However, by evaluating your options and your comfort with the risk you may be able to get a better handle on what you are or aren’t comfortable with and whether or not it makes sense to test the waters in negotiating a buyout.
What happens if you don’t get the number you feel you deserve? Are you prepared to defend an eviction lawsuit if one is filed or will you likely move out all the same? Are you prepared / happy staying put? An understanding of what you’re prepared to do is crucial going into any negotiation. We can help you come up with the best strategy to fit your needs.
Our office has successfully negotiated buyouts for hundreds of Bay Area tenants. If you are going to negotiate a buyout having an experienced attorney by your side can be extremely helpful. Because our office cares about keeping tenants in their homes, we want to be sure that you consider your options thoroughly before you decide to agree to move out. To set up a free consultation to discuss your buyout options contact us today.
In March 2015 the San Francisco Rent Ordinance was amended to include a new section, 37.9E governing buyout negotiations. The new law includes the following requirements among others:
UPDATE 4/2020: The laws regarding buyouts were amended. For more information on the latest changes to the law check out our blog, or the SF Rent Board.
For more information or to discuss your legal situation, call us today at (415) 649-6203 for a phone consultation or submit an inquiry below. Please note our firm can only assist tenants residing in San Francisco, Oakland & Berkeley.