ELLIS ACTS COMMITTED AGAINST SENIOR AND DISABLED TENANTS

San Francisco, CA

January 2010 - October 2013

This map shows the eviction of seniors and disabled tenants over the last 3 years. Red bubbles show evictions enacted by serial evictors - landlords or speculators that have Ellis Acted more than one property. Clicking on the eviction spot produces a pop-up window revealing the landlord/speculator's name and company.

Buildings that senior and disabled tenants live in are often considered desirable to real estate speculators because long-term tenants often have cheaper rent, lowering the purchase price of the building. The original owner may have also deferred maintenance, making the building cheaper as well. Therefore the profit margin of ejecting senior and disabled tenants is higher than evicting new tenants in a well-kept building.

Senior and disabled tenants are predominantly forced out by new owners who only desire to flip the building or turn it into a TIC. It has been reported by many seniors that they shared warm relationships with former owners, and that some former owners even held back allowable rent increases because the tenants felt like family. It is not often acknowledged, but long-term tenants have invested millions in the maintenance of these properties in the form of rent.

Legislation created in 2000 declared that senior and disabled tenants are a protected class, allowing them an extra year's notice to find new housing when being displaced by the Ellis Act. For unprotected tenants, 120 days is required. There are limited defenses against the Ellis Act, so senior and disabled tenants who normally would be protected from most just cause evictions are especially hard hit. Often subsisting on fixed incomes, they are expelled from their homes and shocked by a that changed during the decades within which they had secure/stable housing. Waiting lists for public senior housing take years. Often senior and/or disabled tenants are forced to leave San Francisco altogether, or end up on the street homeless. If dispossessed from the city, they often lose access to vital city-subsidized healthcare and community support that they had been reliant upon. In order to satisfy investment schemes, the city loses the person, as well as their legacy, knowledge of, and commitment to San Francisco. Surely, if city officials honored residents, senior and disabled tenants would be protected and provided for.

Notes on this map: Clicking on the eviction bubble reveals a popup window replete with the evictor's name and sometimes information about them. Some investment companies, such as Urban Green, are serial evictors, and can be seen targeting buildings with multiple senior tenants. We have used Corporate Wiki, the San Francisco County Department, and California Secretary of State data to research landlords and speculators, and San Francisco Rent Board and San Francisco Planning Department data to research Ellis Act petitions and property information.

Our time-laspe animated map of Ellis Act Evictions beginning in 1997 can be found here.

A timeline related to Ellis Act evictions can be found here.

If you have been evicted by the Ellis Act or other means of displacement, please fill out our survey here to put your story on a comprehensive map in the making.