Guggenheim v. City of Goleta, No. 06-56306 - Property Law - U.S. Ninth Circuit
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Guggenheim v. City of Goleta, No. 06-56306

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."

Related Resources

Read the Ninth Circuit's Decision in Guggenheim v. City of Goleta, No. 06-56306