FY 2007/2008 Registration Information
May 17, 2007
Dear Property Owner:
Enclosed is the 2007/08 registration material for Berkeley residential rental units. This material includes a billing statement, fact sheet, return envelope, and Unit Status Form with instructions. The annual registration fee is $170 for each unit covered by the Rent Stabilization Ordinance. For units where the tenancy commenced prior to January 1, 1999, the Board has authorized a direct pass-through of a portion of the registration fees under certain conditions and with proper notice (please see the reverse side of this letter).
Registration fees are due no later than Monday, July 2, 2007. The Rent Stabilization Ordinance requires that payments not received in the Rent Board Office or postmarked by the due date be assessed a 100% penalty. Please return the bottom half of the billing statement with your payment in the enclosed return envelope on or before July 2nd. In an effort to accommodate all property owners, our offices will remain open until 6:30 p.m. on Monday, July 2, 2007.
The billing statement is based on the most recent information provided to our office. Please review the enclosed Unit Status Form carefully. If any information on this form is incorrect, please cross it out and write the correct information directly on the form. Please see the sample on the reverse side of the Registration Fact Sheet. The Unit Status Form has a space to provide your email and phone number. This information is voluntary, but I encourage you to provide it as it may allow us to contact you earlier regarding important Rent Board information.
If there is a prior year's fee or late penalty listed on your statement, it is important to resolve this account immediately. An outstanding balance may adversely affect your eligibility to impose Annual General Adjustment increases or to effectuate an eviction for any unit on the property and may result in a collection action.
You may pay by check, cash, or charge registration fees to your MASTERCARD or VISA by fully completing the credit card section of the billing statement. If you pay by credit card you must provide the V-Code (the last three numbers on the signature line on the back of your credit card) and zip code. If you do not provide the V-Code or any of the other required credit card information by the due date, your payment will be late and you are subject to a 100% penalty.
If you have any questions concerning the enclosed bill please call our Registration Unit at 644-6128.
Instructions to Pass Through Increased Registration Fees to Tenancies Commenced Prior to 1/1/99
Pursuant to Rent Stabilization Board Resolution 07-05 [PDF file], after landlords have paid the 2007-2008 Registration Fee, they may pass through a portion of this year's fee to their tenants in the form of a $2.00 per month rent increase for 12 consecutive months only for tenancies that commenced prior to January 1, 1999. The $2.00 increase does not become part of the permanent rent ceiling for purposes of calculating next year's Annual General Adjustment. The $2.00 rent increase allowed by Resolution 07-05 is not automatic, and landlords will only be eligible to pass it through to their tenants after they have paid the 2007-2008 Registration Fee as well as all outstanding fees and penalties and have given your tenants at least thirty (30) days' prior written notice of the increase. (A sample notice containing all necessary information is included below.) If landlords have already been taking a pass-through pursuant to prior Board resolutions, additional rules may apply, and they should contact our office for further advice. Additionally, landlords must serve notice to initiate the increase allowed by Resolution 07-05 on or before January 1, 2008, in order to receive their full pass-through. For simplicity and ease of tracking, we recommend that landlords begin taking this pass-through in January 2008 along with their Annual General Adjustment for the year. Unless subsequently extended by the Rent Board, the rent increase authorized by Resolution 07-05 must be terminated and the rent reduced by $2.00 twelve months after it is imposed. Finally, landlords must send a copy of the notice to pass through charges permitted by Resolution 07-05 to the Rent Board.
Sample Thirty-Day Notice of Rent Increase (For tenancies that started prior to 1/1/99)
To:___________________________________________________________________ (tenant(s) in possession)
___________________________________________________, Berkeley _________ (address, unit number) (zip code)
Pursuant to Berkeley Rent Stabilization Board Resolution 07-05, adopted on May 7, 2007, you are hereby notified that thirty days after serving you with this notice the monthly rent for the premises you now occupy will be increased for the next twelve months.
The present rent on your unit is $____________________ per month.
Your rent will increase by $_____ pursuant to Rent Board Resolution 07-05.
Your new rent will be $_____________ per month beginning ___________________. (This date must be at least 30 days after service of the Notice of Rent Increase.) This increase is temporary - it will only be collected for the next 12 months - and is not included in the unit's permanent rent ceiling.
The undersigned hereby verifies that the 2007-2008 City of Berkeley Rent Stabilization Board registration fees, as well as all past fees and penalties, for this property were paid in full prior to service of this notice and a copy of this notice has been sent to the Berkeley Rent Stabilization Board.
Advice concerning this Notice and the rental history of the unit is available from the Rent Stabilization Board Public Information Unit, 2125 Milvia Street, Berkeley, CA 94704, 9:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and 12:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, (510) 644-6128.
REGISTRATION FACT SHEET
Our office will remain open to receive registration payments until 6:30 p.m. on the due date, Monday, July 2, 2007. Envelopes postmarked by July 2nd that contain the correct Registration Fees will be considered timely.
The vast majority of residential rental units in Berkeley are required to pay an annual registration fee. The "vacancy decontrol" law has no effect on this long-standing registration requirement for virtually all residential rental properties. Units that are advertised for rent, even though they are not yet rented, are required to register by July 2nd this year.
For each new tenancy started on or after 1/1/96, landlords must file a Vacancy Registration form. The new rent level and, for tenancies started on or after 1/1/99, the housing services reported by the landlord are entered into the Rent Board database.
A property is not properly registered if required Vacancy Registration Forms are not filed. If you have a current tenancy that has not yet been reported, you must file a Vacancy Registration Form within 15 days of the date it is rented even if there is no change in the rent charged. You may download a blank form from our web site at http://www.ci.berkeley.ca.us/rent/hearings/regform.html or pick one up in our office.
Properties not in compliance with Registration requirements are not eligible to implement any rent ceiling increases for all units on the property. Non-compliance may also be used as a defense in an eviction action.
Our office hours are 9:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, and noon to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesdays. Nevertheless, as mentioned above, we will remain open until 6:30 p.m. on Monday, July 2nd, as a service to property owners.
If you pay by credit card, you must include the credit card V-Code and credit card billing zip code and daytime phone number. Please see cover letter for further information. Failure to include the V-Code or any other required information may subject you to penalties for delays.
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If you are unable to access this information online, please participate by contacting us via e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org), telephone (510) 981-7368 (981-RENT), or TDD (510) 981-6903.