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16 Jun 2020

L.A. Halts Rent Collection For Pandemic-Affected Self Storage Tenants


John Egan

Freelance Writer & Editor
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Article by John Egan of Sparefoot.com

Self Storage professionals are objecting to a new ordinance that prohibits storage facilities in Los Angeles, CA, from collecting rent and late fees from tenants who’ve been financially squeezed by the coronavirus pandemic.

Industry professionals complain that the ordinance wasn’t needed because self storage operators in L.A. and elsewhere already were voluntarily helping tenants who’ve been unable to pay rent due to the pandemic.

During the April 30 earnings call for Glendale, CA-based Public Storage, Boyle said Public Storage had collected about 95 percent of April rents. He acknowledged the lingering pandemic “could very likely put more pressure on the consumer.”

California attorney Carlos Kaslow, general counsel for the national Self Storage Association, said ordinances similar to the one in L.A. have taken effect recently in the California cities of Pasadena, Ontario and Lafayette.

Chiswell fears many of the self-storage tenants in L.A. who’ve put off paying rent won’t be able to catch up with their debts once the city’s ban expires, particularly in light of double-digit unemployment rates.

Chiswell said the ordinance disproportionately hurts small businesses, which run the bulk of self-storage facilities in Southern California and across the country.

The self storage industry “has demonstrated our willingness to work with customers, bend over backward for customers,” he said.

Thumbnail: Photo by Jack Finnigan on Unsplash

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