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Rental Housing Inspection Ordinance

Beginning this past January 1, 2016, a new rental housing inspection ordinance was put in place in the city of San Luis Obispo. The purpose of this ordinance is to safeguard the public and preserve the city’s neighborhoods and housing stocks. It ensures that rental housing units are maintained in accordance with the State Housing Law, State Building Standards, and local property maintenance and zoning provisions. Further, it will proactively identify substandard and unsafe residential rental units. Owners of residential rental dwellings within San Luis Obispo are required to register each unit within the community development department. A form will be provided for all owners. A rental registration fee will also be enforced. If the owner fails to register or reregister their rental unit they are subject to a registration delinquency fee.

Inspections will be imposed to ensure units comply with the provisions of all building, housing and sanitation codes. The “inspector” is authorized to inspect all residential rented dwelling units to determine if these dwellings comply with the applicable provisions and codes. Units must have been constructed in accordance with the code standard that was in effect at the time that the residential rental dwelling unit was constructed, altered, remodeled, erected, or converted.

If an inspection is scheduled and entry is refused, the inspector has the ability to inspect the premises using every remedy provided by law to a secure lawful entry, including securing an inspection warrant. If there is reasonable cause to believe that the residential rental unit is hazardous, unsafe, or dangerous the inspector has the right to immediately enter and inspect, in order to safeguard the public health or safety.

Initial implementation of inspections will be completed over a four year period. Priority is given to those residential rental dwelling units which have been found in violation of any building, housing and sanitation codes or ordinances within the past five years. Priority is also given to those owners who request an inspection. A reinspection may occur upon proper notice if a complaint is received or if the inspector has reasonable cause to believe that the unit is in violation. Inspections will be scheduled on a three year cycle.

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