The California Apartment Association this week asked its members for help stopping AB 1436, the “free rent” bill to be heard Tuesday in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The bill by Assemblyman David Chiu, D-San Francisco, would make rental property owners defer rent payments for tenants who are either unable — or unwilling — to pay for housing during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Assemlyman David Chiu

The legislation allows tenants to skip rent payments without providing any proof that they have been negatively affected by COVID-19. The bill is nothing more than a government-sanctioned rent strike.

Tenants would not be required to pay their unpaid rent until April 1, 2022.

AB 1436 lacks any funding to help tenants and landlords with the unpaid rent. If AB 1436 becomes law, countless rental property owners will lose their buildings through foreclosure. Their tenants also will lose their homes.

While the bill does include mortgage forbearance, this mandate is not enforceable under federal law.

CAA adamantly opposes AB 1436, and you can read CAA’s letter outlining its opposition here.

To help stop AB 1436, click the button below and send a message to your state senator.