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The Rent Adjustment Program works to encourage open communication and to foster a climate of understanding between Oakland landlords and tenants by providing mediation services for cases involving rent increases and some evictions.
Tenants may file a petition to challenge a rent increase that they believe to be in violation of the Rent Adjustment Ordinance. Cases are initially presented to Hearing Officers, who make a decision after reviewing information from both the tenant and the landlord.
Hearing Officers also review some issues pertaining to Oakland's Just Cause for Eviction Ordinance.
The Rent Adjustment Program also provides forms and processes applications for landlords who wish to go out of business consistent with the provisions of California's Ellis Act. Visit our Ellis Act Resources Page for more information.
Allowable Annual Rent Increase
The annual CPI increase rate effective July 1, 2013 through June 30, 2014 is 2.1%. Tenants may only be given one increase in any 12-month period, and the rent increase cannot take effect earlier than the tenant's Anniversary Date. In addition, California law requires that tenants be provided with written notice of a rent increase either 30 days (for increases 10% or less) or 60 days (for increases greater than 10%) in advance of the effective date of the increase. If an owner has "banked" prior year increases, covered units may not receive a CPI increase of any more than 3X the current year CPI (see Banking in Rent Adjustment Program Regulations).
- July 1, 2013: 2.1%
- July 1, 2012: 3.0%
- July 1, 2011: 2.0%
- July 1, 2010: 2.7%
- July 1, 2009: 0.7%
- July 1, 2008: 3.2%
- July 1, 2007: 3.3%
- May 1, 2006: 3.3%
- May 1, 2005: 1.9%
- May 1, 2004: 0.7%
- May 1, 2003: 3.6%
- July 1, 2002: .6%
- March 1, 1995 - June 30, 2002: 3% per year
Housing Residential Rent-Relocation Board
The Board hears appeals from Rent Adjustment staff decisions, recommends regulations for, and changes to, the Rent Adjustment Ordinance, and adopts regulations for implementation of the Just Cause for Eviction Ordinance and Oakland's Ellis Act Tenant Protections. The Board also hears appeals related to Code Compliance Relocation Payments. For more information regarding Code Compliance Relocation, view our Housing Services & Counseling page.
Click here for information about Board Meetings.
Challenging a Rent Increase
If a landlord increases rents by more than the allowable annual rent increase, or gives more than one increase in a 12-month period, tenants may file a petition with the Rent Adjustment Program. In most cases, tenants have 60 days to file after receiving the written notice of rent increase from their landlord. See the Renter Resources section for more details and forms.
Responding to a Challenge to a Rent Increase
Upon receipt of a petition from a tenant, Rent Adjustment staff notifies the landlord of the tenant's complaint. Landlords are asked to provide supportive information showing justification for the additional increase. The justifications that will establish rental increases above the current CPI limits are:
- capital improvement costs
- increased operating and maintenance costs
- allowable annual rent increases not given to tenants in prior years ("banking")
- mortgage costs
- repair costs for casualty losses not covered by insurance
- fair rate of return on investment for owners (as provided for under California law)
See the Landlord Resources section for details and forms.
Copies of Documents
Copies of documents can be obtained by filling out the Request for Copies form and returning it to the Rent Adjustment Program with pre-payment. For the exact cost of document copies, phone the Rent Adjustment office.
Legal Issues and Rights
The Rent Adjustment Board Staff cannot offer legal advice. Visit the Useful Links/Other Resources section to find legal resources to help you.
For assistance with rental disputes not related to rental rates or increases, see our Housing Services & Counseling page.
Rent Adjustment Program
250 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, 5th Floor
Oakland, CA 94612.
Mail to: P.O. Box 70243, Oakland, CA 94612-0243
Phone: (510) 238-3721
Fax: (510) 238-6181
Rent Adjustment Program Manager Connie Taylor
Phone: (510) 238-6246
Rent Adjustment Drop-In Services at Housing Assistance Center
250 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, 6th Floor
Drop-in Hours: Monday - Friday, 10 am - 12 pm and 2 pm - 4 pm