“Rents in California, especially the Bay Area, are soaring. Decent housing is unaffordable for far too many.
But the solution is to build more housing, not restrict rents. That’s why voters should reject Proposition 10 on the Nov. 6 ballot.
The initiative would lift state limitations on local rent control laws, allowing cities to impose restrictions on more housing. That’s the last thing we need. It would only make the situation worse.
Rent control is a feel-good idea. A quick fix to a complicated problem. But it is not very effective at protecting poor or vulnerable tenants. And, more significantly, rent control discourages new rental home construction, the very thing we need to ease the state’s housing crisis.
Most economists agree that rent control reduces the quality and quantity of housing. “The analysis of rent control is among the best-understood issues in all of economics and — among economists, anyway — one of the least controversial,” liberal economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman wrote in 2000. It’s just as true today.”