Why was the Rental Inspection Program Created?
The program was created to proactively identify blighted and deteriorated housing stock. The program helps to ensure rehabilitation and prevention of rental housing that does not meet applicable building and housing codes, City Municipal Codes standards, or is not safe to occupy. The program was also put in place to enhance the quality of life for residents of the city living in rental properties.
What am I required to do as a property owner for my rental ?
Besides assuring that your property is in compliance with Federal, State and Local Codes you must register your rental property with the Neighborhood Services Department and provide the following information:
- Contact Number
- Property Address
- Property Type
- Site Number
- Number of Buildings
- Number of Units
- Management Co. Name
- Management Contact Number
- Site Manager
- Emergency Contact Number
What type of Codes do the Rental Inspection Program Enforce?
All housing in California is mandated to abide by the State Housing Code also know as The California Health and Safety Code. This code established minimum housing standards for both owner and renter occupied housing units. Additionally the City of Rancho Cordova, like most jurisdictions also enforce other Federal, State and Local Codes adopted by the Municipality which pertain to housing. Some of these Codes include:
- Rancho Cordova Municipal Code
- 2007 California Building Code
- 2007 California Mechanical Code
- 2007 California Plumbing Code
- 2007 California Fire Code
What types of problems can I call in about?
State and local codes pertaining to housing cover a variety of substandard issues. From lack of power or water to deteriorating landscaping and lack of general maintenance. Below is an example of some of the most common issues reported, however always feel free to contact us with your concern:
- Exterior Site Conditions (such as non-maintained landscaping, junk and rubbish, etc.)
- Substandard Building Exterior (such as damaged siding, lighting, walkways roofing or railings)
- Non-Maintained Plumbing (such as leaks, non-permitted work, non-functioning toilets, etc.)
- Substandard Electrical ( damaged breakers or wiring, no electricity, etc.)
- Substandard unit interiors (such as deteriorating flooring, counters, fixtures, appliances, walls, pest infestation, water intrusion, etc.)
Can my Landlord retaliate if I report substandard housing issues to a public agency ?
In short NO. Under California Civil Code, Protection from Retaliatory Conduct [CA Civil Code §1942.5] The law infers that the property owner(s) has a retaliatory motive if the property owner(s) seeks to evict the tenant or raise rents within six months after the tenant has exercised their tenant rights by notifying a public agency or having a public agency inspect a rental unit.
If the violations do not pose an immediate threat, report the violation to management and allow them reasonable time to resolve the problem. If they do not resolve the problem or your situation can not wait contact the Code Enforcement Department at 916-851-8770.
What Does State Housing Law Require?
The State Housing Law for California (* California Health & Safety Code, 17910 et seq.) requires property owners to maintain his or her property free of substandard housing conditions which may endanger the life, limb, property, safety or welfare of the occupants or general public. These regulations apply to both owner occupied and rental property.
What types of housing does the Rental Inspection Program and State Housing Codes Apply to?
- Lodging houses
- Apartment Buildings
- Single-Family homes
- or other occupied dwelling
What types of fees or penalties are associated from maintaining substandard rental housing?
Maintaining substandard housing is a violation of California State Housing Law as well as the City of Rancho Cordova Rental Inspection Ordinance.
Pursuant to the City of Rancho Cordova Municipal Code, Sections 16.20.1100, 16.20.1105 and 16.20.1150 Rental Housing Enforcement Fees may be issued for any substandard housing violation following the issuance of a notice and order for a violation of the City or State Housing Codes. The fees are $253 for the first reinspection, and $510 for the notice and order, where a violation continues to exist following the first reinspection. All subsequent reinspections occurring thereafter to determine whether corrective action has been made are $253. There shall be no fee charged for an inspection by any complaint if no violation is discovered. In every instance in which a notice and order is issued and served there shall be a fee of $253 charged to cover costs of administration and completion of the documentation associated with concluding the enforcement activity.
Pursuant to the City of Rancho Cordova Municipal Code Sections 16.20.1120, additional cost of enforcement shall be levied at a rate of $253 per hour
Additionally ongoing violations may result in the issuance of a criminal citation, filings with with State Revenue and Taxation for the disallowance for state income tax purposes, Certificate of Nuisance filing and possible receivership of property.
How do I request an appeal for an Order?
You have the right to appeal the order at a hearing before a neutral hearing officer. The written appeal and an Appeal Fee of $150 must be filed within fifteen (15) days from the date of the service of the order. The written appeal shall contain: 1) names of all appellants; 2) brief statement setting forth the legal interest of each of the appellants in the building or land described in the notice and order; 3) brief statement of the specific order being appealed together with any materials facts claimed to support the contentions of the appellant(s); 4) brief statement of the relief sought and the reasons why it is claimed the protested order should be reversed, modified or otherwise set aside; 5) signature of each party named as an appellant and their official mailing address(es); and 6) verification (by declaration under penalty of perjury) of at least one appellant as to the truth of the matters stated in the appeal. For more details please call the Neighborhood Services Department (call (916) 851-8770 for more details). You will be notified of the date and time of your hearing. Your failure to appear at the hearing will result in a forfeiture of your deposit of the fine and will constitute a failure to exhaust your administrative remedies.
Failure to timely request a hearing or to pay the deposit for the hearing constitutes a waiver of the right to appeal and a failure to exhaust administrative remedies.
What can I do to avoid fees and penalties associated with the Rental Inspection Program?
Rental Inspection fees are only accessed when rental properties are found to be in violation of Federal, State or Local codes. The City encourages all owners to develop appropriate maintenance and monitoring programs which effectively keep there properties in compliance with all applicable codes and assure safe, sanitary, and well maintained rental housing within the City of Rancho Cordova. It is our hope that by encouraging all property owners to actively take part in the care of there property, we as a community can foster better neighborhoods and better housing for our residents.