Protecting tenants, especially those vulnerable to displacement, is generally understood to be a more immediate and short-term approach to maintaining affordable housing in San Francisco. This strategy helps tenants to remain in their communities and San Francisco, mitigating the pressures of displacement.
While the tenant protection approach keeps tenants from displacement, it must be coupled with ensuring affordable housing is available for tenants to live in. Preserving existing affordable units stabilizes communities by preventing the loss of affordable housing, ensuring that low- and moderate-income residents can remain in San Francisco even as high-income residents migrate into communities.
This section includes a summary of the following programs: tenant protection and housing preservation, rent stabilization and eviction protection, Tenant Protection Services, lottery preference programs, homeowner stabilization and opportunity, Single Room Occupancy Hotel protections, short-term rental regulations, condominium conversion restrictions, stemming the loss of legalization of unauthorized dwelling units (UDUs), and the small sites program.
Funding for Tenant Protection and Housing Stabilization Programs
The Mayor’s Office of Housing and Community Development (MOHCD) allocates funding for tenant protection services and homeownership opportunity programs. Services for tenants include legal advice or representation, mediation, rental assistance, and tenant education and counseling. These services are available to all tenant households, not just deed-restricted affordable housing tenants.
The following chart describes the annual funding amounts for MOHCD’s tenant protection services. Funding sources include local sources, such as the Housing Trust Fund and federal sources, such as Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and the Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG) from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Since 2014, City funding for these services has increased threefold and funding has come primarily from a local source. The City competitively awards these funds to community-based organizations that provide tenant protection services. There is a need to sustain or expand consistent, local affordable housing funding.