For years, California has been facing a severe housing crisis that has only been exacerbated by the pandemic. Within Los Angeles alone, tens of thousands of people are homeless; the average rent per month has jumped to more than $2,200 per month; and the city has one of the lowest vacancy rates in the country. With such severe circumstances plaguing the state, the governor signed new bills in an attempt to combat this housing crisis.
On September 16, 2021, Governor Newsom signed SB 9 and SB 10 into law.
Signed with the intention to combat the housing crisis, these bills will ease the restrictions of the California Environmental Quality Act to increase housing density and multi-family homes. They also open up the potential for situations where property owners can construct up to 4 housing units on a single-family lot.
Here is a quick look at each bill.
Under SB 9, city municipalities must treat a proposed housing development containing “no more than 2 residential units” as “single-family residential housing.” In addition, the bill will allow agencies to approve an urban lot split (provided that all requirements are met) and divide a lot into two; furthermore, there is an opportunity to build an additional dwelling unit upon each lot.
Under SB 10, city municipalities can allow the development of up to 10 units or less in areas zoned for single-family housing.
Many believe that these bills will undermine local planning and control, ruin the character of single-family neighborhoods, worsen traffic, weaken protections on historic places, and strain infrastructure. Others believe that the bills will allow for some much-needed relief for those struggling in the housing crisis.
The nature of these bills will inevitably lead to serious questions and complex legal matters. Here at Kendall Law, we specialize in handling complex real estate and legal matters.
Contact Kendall Law for answers to your legal questions regarding SB 9 and SB 10. Contact us or call (310) 619-4941.