Topic No. 265: Disclosure Requirements for Online Rental Advertisements

Effective June 22, 2020, Rent Ordinance Section 37.9F requires landlords to include a written disclosure in all online listings for residential rental units, excluding listings by landlords or master tenants who will reside in the same rental unit as their tenants or subtenants. The disclosure, which is also required in print advertising (if practicable) must be in 12-point font or larger and state the following:

“This unit is a rental unit subject to the San Francisco Rent Ordinance, which limits evictions without just cause, and which states that any waiver by a tenant of their rights under the Rent Ordinance is void as contrary to public policy.” 

The Rent Board may receive referrals regarding online listings that do not contain the above disclosure. If the Rent Board determines that the listing does not substantially comply with the legal requirements and that the landlord has not corrected the defect, the Rent Board will attempt to inform the landlord in writing. The landlord must correct the violation within three business days after receiving the notice. If the landlord does not correct the violation within three business days, the Rent Board may impose a reasonable administrative penalty on the landlord of up to $100.00 per day, not counting the three-day correction period, and not to exceed $1,000.00 per listing. 

In addition, the Rent Ordinance authorizes the City Attorney or a non-profit tenants’ rights organization to initiate a civil lawsuit against any landlord who fails to comply with the above disclosure requirements.

 

June 2020