Challenge to Rent Control Ordinance
In Guggenheim v. City of Goleta, No. 06-56306, an action against the City of Santa Barbara claiming that its rent control ordinance was a taking of plaintiffs' property without compensation, and asserting numerous other claims, the court affirmed summary judgment for defendants where 1) leaving the ordinance in place impairs no investment-backed expectations of plaintiffs, but nullifying it would destroy the value these tenants thought they were buying; and 2) the ordinance protected owners of mobile homes from the leverage owners of the pads have, to collect a premium reflecting the cost of moving the mobile home on top of the market value of use of the land, which was a legitimate government purpose, related to but distinct from lowering housing prices for all renters.
As the court wrote: "In 1979, Santa Barbara County, California adopted a rent control ordinance for mobile homes. Mobile homes have the peculiar characteristic of separating ownership of homes that are, as a practical matter, affixed to the land, from the land itself. Because the owner of the mobile home cannot readily move it to get a lower rent, the owner of the land has the owner of the mobile home over a barrel."
Read the Ninth Circuit's Decision in Guggenheim v. City of Goleta, No. 06-56306