Does state law regulate rent increases in mobilehome parks?
No, state law does not regulate the amount of a rent increase in a mobilehome park. Rent stabilization is a “local control issue”. The MRL does require a park to give residents a 90-day advance written notice of a rent increase (Civil Code §798.39). If residents are on a long-term lease, the lease would govern the percentage and frequency of rent increases, with increases not less than every 90 days as required by law. If residents sign a long-term lease of more than one year in length, state law provides that the lease is exempt from any local rent control ordinance now in existence or enacted in the future. (Civil Code §798.17(a)(1)) (Approximately 102 local jurisdictions have some form of rent control for mobilehome parks.)
Can the park charge separate “maintenance” or “pass-through” fees in addition to the rent?
Yes, if the resident’s signed lease or rental agreement provides for assessments or fees for maintenance, among other services. If not mentioned in the lease, a new fee would have to be for a service actually rendered, such as trash pick-up, and would require a 60-day advance written notice. (Civil Code §798.32(a)) If the resident signs a new lease or rental agreement that includes these fees, they are agreeing to pay the fees. State law does not require a notice requirement for an increase in an already existing fee. Local jurisdictions with mobilehome park rent control ordinances may regulate fees or pass-through costs which parks charge their residents. Some ordinances, for example, distinguish capital improvements from maintenance, allowing a pass-through fee of certain capital improvements (not including maintenance) amortized over a period of time.