Rent Control Adjustment Relief

The 2022 General Adjustment of 6% with a maximum $140 monthly increase for rent-controlled units is the highest it has been since 1990. As many renter households in Santa Monica have experienced financial hardships resulting from the impacts of the global pandemic and are already known to be rent-burdened, an increase of this magnitude will likely lead to greater housing instability in the community. In response, the City of Santa Monica has developed a rent relief program - the Rent Control Adjustment Relief (RCAR) program and a new ordinance offers eviction protections for qualifying tenants who need more time to pay increase rent. The RCAR program provides relief equivalent to a 3% rent increase over a 12-month period to be paid directly to the property owner/manager in a single lump sum.

The Rent Control Adjustment Relief program and eviction ordinance are intended to keep families housed, shield tenants from eviction, and help both property owners and tenants manage this year’s unusually high General Adjustment increase. The program will use $750,000 in available City funds to provide one-time relief to cover the rent control General Adjustment increase. 

Rent Control Adjustment Relief applications were accepted from August 29 at 8 a.m. to September 19 at 6 p.m. Applications are now closed.

Santa Monica housing voucher holders are EXEMPT from applying for RCAR. These households will be automatically assessed for eligibility for RCAR assistance as part of their annual recertification process through September 2023. These households will be screened for RCAR assistance using the documentation provided as part of the recertification process, no additional application process will be required.

Rent Control Adjustment Relief Program Details

All tenants who meet the requirements below were eligible to apply regardless of immigration status: 

  1. You reside in a rent-controlled apartment in the City of Santa Monica; AND 
  2.  You received notification of a 2022 General Adjustment rent increase; AND 
  3.  You pay more than 50% of your household income towards rent; AND 
  4.  You are not a rental housing voucher recipient (Section 8, Continuum of Care, HOME, VASH, etc.). 

Households of all income levels could apply. However, funding is limited, and not everyone who applied is guaranteed assistance. Therefore, priority will be given to households identified as being “extremely low” and “very low” income according to the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) (see Table 1 below). Only one application per household/address will be considered. This program will not count as a public charge. 

Table 1: U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) 2022 Income Limits

Please note that applicants were required to submit the following documentation. Missing documentation may cause your application to be rejected or your payment to be delayed. 

Please note that the property owner/manager will be contacted, and a W-9 will be requested. All payments will be made directly to the property owner/manager.