Mountain View's new system for settling the myriad disputes over the cost of apartment rents is now ready for show time. This week, Mountain View staff uploaded the petition paperwork to the city website for landlords and tenants to request special-case adjustments for the cost of rent-controlled apartments.
Under the city's new rent-control program, increases to the monthly rent on affected apartments are tied to the regional Consumer Price Index. But the city was also required to set up a system for special-case situations, such as a property owner who is losing money due to an inability to raise rents.
This new city petition process is supposed to give landlords or tenants an opportunity to demonstrate why apartment rents need to deviate from that formula.
But filing out these petitions will be no easy task, especially for landlords seeking higher rents. The new petition for landlords is 22 pages long and requires detailed information, including years of income and expense statements for each apartment building. The form for tenants requires far less information and is only a few pages long.
In past meetings, many landlords have indicated they will immediately file petitions to raise their rent higher. City officials estimate they will see about 300 petitions filed in the first year of the program.
The city of Mountain View is planning a series of new workshops on the new rules. A tenant-focused workshop is planned from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 16. A similar workshop for landlords is scheduled for 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 19. Both meetings will be held at the City Hall Council Chambers at 500 Castro St.