By Francesca Mari : nytimes – excerpt
Hundreds of thousands of single-family homes are now in the hands of giant companies — squeezing renters for revenue and putting the American dream even further out of reach… (more)
The (above) New York Times article states that private-equity firms have grabbed roughly $60 billion worth of single-family homes.Although, the strategy of the investors, described in the article, has been somewhat different (it seems they have bought distressed homes) than what their strategy would be if they bought up single-family homes in order to convert them to triplexes as allowed by SB-773, it shows that private-equity firms have a strong appetite for single-family homes.
Per our attached list of problems with SB-773: “By prohibiting local agencies from requiring a homeowner to live on the premises, SB-773 incentivizes large-scale investors to buy up single-family homes, convert them to triplexes and then operate them as commercial enterprises. Over time, as supply of single-family homes diminishes, the price of single-family homes would rise more rapidly for residents.”
Recap About Senate Bill 773:
SB-773 is a “clean-up bill” and corrects chaptering errors in accessory dwelling unit (ADU) legislation enacted in 2019 (AB-68, AB-881, SB-13 and others). The bill combines all the ADU legislation enacted last year into one bill. It passed through the State Senate on January 27th and is now being heard by the State Assembly Rules Committee.
We believe that amendments to the bill could correct much more than just chaptering errors. This is an opportunity to amend the flawed ADU bills that were signed into law last year. All further comments about SB-773, also apply to the other newly enacted ADU bills.
Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) and Junior Accessory Dwelling Units (JADUs) can be very beneficial. However, by requiring ministerial review and stripping away local control of land use and local development standards related to second units, SB-773 goes too far. This is particularly true in high fire risk areas.
This detrimental bill eliminates single family zoning and enables the transformation of beneficial accessory dwelling units (second units and granny flats) into overcrowded multifamily triplexes with potentially multiple adverse impacts.
Besides other mandates, SB-773 requires local agencies to approve detached ADUs that exceed the Floor Area Ratio (FAR), provided the ADU is 800 square feet or less, 16 feet or less in height, and 4 feet or more from the rear/side property lines.
In addition, SB-773 prohibits cities and counties from requiring additional off-street parking spaces in any of the following instances:
(1) The accessory dwelling unit is located within one-half mile walking distance of public transit. [**SB-773 defines ‘Public transit’ as “a location, including but not limited to, a bus stop or train station, where the public may access buses, trains, subways and other forms of transportation that charge set fares, run on fixed routes, and are available to the public.”]
(2) The accessory dwelling unit is located within an architecturally and historically significant historic district.
(3) The accessory dwelling unit is part of the proposed or existing primary residence or an accessory structure.
(4) When on-street parking permits are required but not offered to the occupant of the accessory dwelling unit.
(5) When there is a car share vehicle located within one block of the accessory dwelling unit.
(6) When homeowners convert garages to new housing.