As the economy rebounds from the COVID-19 pandemic, many CAA members have reached out to our Landlord Helpline to ask, “Can I raise the rent now?” While there was never a statewide mandatory rent freeze during the pandemic, the governor’s declaration of a state of emergency due to the pandemic did trigger the anti-price gouging law statewide. The price-gouging limitation tied to the COVID-19 state of emergency ended March 4, 2021. However, new states of emergency for one or more counties based on excessive heat, drought and fire seem to be declared weekly, and these also trigger the anti-price gouging law. Due to the pandemic, some localities also have enacted local rent freezes. Layered on top of these temporary limitations are state and local rent control laws that limit a landlord’s ability to raise rents and the timing of rent increases.
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