Everyone is required to stay home, except for essential needs. When out, protect yourself and those around you by wearing a face covering, staying 6 feet away from others, and washing your hands often. Learn more at cityofberkeley.info/covid19. City offices are closed to the public. Some services are available remotely.

The City of Berkeley Health Officer has ordered all residents to shelter at home, leaving only to receive or provide essential services, starting 12:01 am on Tuesday, March 17. See details of the Order, frequently asked questions, and recommendations from Berkeley Public Health at https://www.cityofberkeley.info/coronavirus.

City Council Live Stream: Please visit https://www.cityofberkeley.info/CalendarEventWebcastMain.aspx

ZAB Live Stream: Please visit http://www.cityofberkeley.info/Clerk/Commissions/Zoning_Adjustment_Board_Meeting_-_Video_Stream.aspx.

The City of Berkeley web site is undergoing scheduled maintenance starting on Friday night, September 13 and ending on Saturday afternoon, September 14. During this time, most web pages should be available, but some resources may become unavailable for short periods of time.

Looking for a live stream of the Zoning Adjustments Board (ZAB) meeting on 5/9/19, at 7:00pm? Please visit https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1UAnZ8kU8EWllREyOY7rwQ/. The normal viewing methods will not work this time due to a concurrent City Council Special Meeting at the same time.

Looking for a live stream of the Zoning Adjustments Board (ZAB) meeting on 2/28/19, from 6:00 to 11:00 PM? Please visit http://www.cityofberkeley.info/Clerk/Commissions/Zoning_Adjustment_Board_Meeting_-_Video_Stream.aspx. The normal viewing methods will not work this time due to a concurrent City Council Special Meeting at the same date and time.

PG&E is reporting a widespread outage affecting thousands of customers in Berkeley and many City buildings, including the Finance Customer Service Center and the Permit Service Center. Call respective City services for further details, or check the PG&E outage page. Power is expected to return by 12:45pm. Traffic lights that are not working should be treated as a four-way stop sign.

Translation Disclaimer

Rent Stabilization Board
Rent Stabilization Board

The Berkeley Rent Board Mailbag

Annual General Adjustments
(and other types of rent increases)

Q: I have a tenant whose water consumption has more than quadrupled. I, of course, am paying for the water, but I'd like to pass on the increases to the tenant. Is that possible? 

Our advice would be to discuss the matter with the tenant, if you haven't already done so, to find out whether there is a leak and, if not, why his/her usage has increased. If there is no leak and you cannot reach an understanding with the tenant, you could petition the Rent Board to transfer responsibility for the water bill to the tenant with a corresponding rent ceiling decrease. In the alternative, you could petition for a rent ceiling increase; you would have to prove that the tenant is using more water than is reasonable for the number of occupants in the rental unit, and take the position that this constitutes an increase in services.

Q: I'm a landlord in Berkeley. Can I bank the Annual General Adjustments (AGAs) I'm granted each year, or do I risk losing the increases if I don't charge them immediately?

You can "bank" AGAs, by not raising the rent on January 1st even though you are authorized to do so, and then increase the rent at a later time. As long as the rental unit is in compliance, the rent ceiling will be automatically adjusted in the Board's database. You can raise the rent to the rent ceiling at any time provided you give the tenants a written, 30-day notice of a rent increase. However, if the amount of the increase is greater than 10% of the lowest rent during the previous 12 months, California Civil Code Section 827(b)(3) requires you to give your tenants a 90-day written notice.


Have a question?  Email us at rent@ci.berkeley.ca.us

Home | Web Policy | Text-Only Site Map | Contact Us
Rent Stabilization Board, 2125 Milvia Street, Berkeley, CA 94704
Questions or comments? Email: rent@cityofberkeley.info Phone: (510) 981-7368
(510) 981-CITY/2489 or 311 from any landline in Berkeley
TTY: (510) 981-6903