Chapter 17.12
CONDOMINIUMS AND STOCK COOPERATIVES

Sections:

17.12.010    Purpose.

17.12.020    Definitions.

17.12.030    Determination of vacancy rate and surplus.

17.12.040    Fees, requirements and procedures.

17.12.050    Inspections.

17.12.060    Planning and environmental quality commission and council action.

17.12.070    Map approval.

17.12.080    Certificates of use and occupancy.

17.12.090    Certificates of use and occupancy – Applications.

17.12.100    Certificates of use and occupancy – Issuance.

17.12.110    Additional requirements.

17.12.120    Advertising.

17.12.130    Severability.

17.12.010 Purpose.

Condominium ownership of property creates a unique distribution and/or aggregation of property rights and responsibilities among a number of persons which rights and responsibilities are not inherent in other types of property ownership, with particular effect on master plan concepts, elements of the general plan, and other related considerations. Therefore, it is the purpose of this chapter:

A. To insure a reasonable balance of rental and ownership housing in the city and a variety of individual choices of tenure, type, price and location of housing and at the same time provide an additional mode of property ownership;

B. To maintain the supply of rental housing for low and moderate-income persons and families and to provide an additional mode of property ownership;

C. To reduce and avoid the displacement of long-term residents, particularly senior citizens and families with school-age children, who may be required to move from the community due to a shortage of replacement rental housing;

D. To encourage quality development which will not contribute to the deterioration of the neighborhood;

E. To encourage a development pattern based upon good land planning principles;

F. To insure that the conversion of existing developments to condominium ownership be consistent with the protection of the health, safety and general welfare of the future occupants of the condominium;

G. The council finds that the conversion of existing apartment buildings into condominiums diminishes the supply of rental housing and displaces residents and will tend to require them to move outside the city when a housing shortage exists. The council finds and declares that when the number of vacant dwelling units in the city is equal to or less than three percent of the total number of dwelling units in the city, a housing shortage exists which is inconsistent with the purposes of this chapter and with the goals and policies set forth in the housing element of the general plan of the city; and

H. The council further determines that many of the considerations set forth with reference to condominium conversions apply to the transition of an existing apartment building into a stock cooperative and, therefore, determines that the provisions of this chapter shall be applied to stock cooperatives as set forth. (Prior code § 10-2.21)

17.12.020 Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, certain words and phrases are defined as follows:

A. A “condominium” or “condominium project” shall be that which is defined by Section 1351 of the Civil Code of the state, containing two or more condominiums, as defined in Section 783 of said code.

B. “Stock cooperative” means a stock cooperative as defined in Section 11003.2 of the Business and Professions Code of the state, containing two or more rights of exclusive occupancy.

C. “Proposed condominium” refers to condominiums in which the units are not as yet constructed.

D. “Condominium conversion” shall refer to condominiums in which the existing units are being used as single or multiple-family residences or as an industrial or commercial building not divided into separate units.

E. Each unit in a condominium subdivision shall be considered as a parcel of land. A parcel consisting of common area only shall not be so defined.

F. “Building Official” means the community development director or his designated agent.

G. A condominium project, as the same is defined in Section 1351 of the Civil Code of the state, which is divided into five or more condominium units shall be subject to the requirements and procedures applicable to subdivisions as generally set forth in Chapters 17.04 and 17.08 and to the additional requirements and procedures set forth in this chapter.

H. A condominium project, as defined in Section 1351 of the Civil Code of the state, which is divided into four or less condominium units shall be subject to the requirements and procedures applicable to minor subdivisions as generally set forth in Chapters 17.04 and 17.08 and to the additional requirements and procedures set forth in this chapter.

I. “Division of land” includes in its meaning the division of airspace into condominium units.

J. “Developer” means the owner or subdivider with a controlling proprietary interest in the projects subject to this chapter or the person or organization making an application hereunder.

K. “Community apartment” or “community apartment project” means an apartment or an apartment project in which an undivided interest in the land is coupled with the right of the exclusive occupancy of any apartment located thereon. In this chapter all references to condominiums and condominium projects or stock cooperatives and stock cooperative projects shall also include community apartments and community apartment projects.

L. “Vacancy deficiency” means the number of vacant apartment units needed to raise the vacancy rate to three percent.

M. “Vacancy rate” means the number of apartments being offered for rent or lease in the city shown as a percentage of the total number of apartments offered for or under rental or lease agreement in the city.

N. “Vacancy surplus” means the number of vacant apartments being offered for rent or lease in excess of a three percent vacancy rate.

O. All other terms shall have the same definitions as set forth in applicable state laws relative to the subdivision of land and defined in other chapters of this title, unless otherwise specifically defined in this section. (Prior code § 10-2.22)

17.12.030 Determination of vacancy rate and surplus.

In December of each year, the community development director shall determine the vacancy rate and the vacancy surplus, if any, which shall apply for the entire year.

A. No application for the approval of a tentative tract or parcel map for a condominium or stock cooperative conversion shall be filed unless there is a vacancy surplus.

B. When there is a vacancy surplus as of the most recent determination, an application for the approval of a tentative tract or parcel map for a conversion may be filed with the community development department if the number of lots, parcels, units, or rights of exclusive occupancy proposed by all such filings does not exceed the vacancy surplus by more than ten percent. (Prior code § 10-2.22.1)

17.12.040 Fees, requirements and procedures.

The application in connection with the making of any condominium subdivision shall be the preparation of a tentative tract or parcel map, which shall be accompanied by the following: data, information and materials, a filing fee as set forth in Section 17.08.190 and all information required by this title pertaining to the filing of a tentative or parcel map for a project subject to the provisions of this chapter. Upon filing an application to convert existing apartments to a condominium or stock cooperative, a fee as established by City Council resolution to cover reviews and inspections conducted by the building division pursuant to the property and structural pest reports shall be paid to the City at the time of submitting such application. In addition to the other requirements of this title, such maps shall be accompanied by all of the following information:

A. The length of residency for each current household and the total number of persons currently residing on the premises;

B. The current rents for each unit, including the date and amount of the last two rent increases;

C. The approximate proposed sales price of each unit and the proposed budget for submission to the Real Estate Commissioner or a similar estimate of projected annual operating and maintenance fees or assessments;

D. A property report describing the condition and estimated useful life of all existing buildings, including foundation, mechanical, electrical, plumbing, roofing and structural elements, together with an estimated cost for repairs and replacements projected for the five years following conversion. Such report shall be prepared by a state registered engineer;

E. A structural pest report prepared by a licensed structural pest control operator pursuant to Section 8516 of the Business and Professions Code of the state relating to written reports on the absence or presence of wood-destroying pests or organisms;

F. A report showing the general layout and describing any facilities or amenities provided in common areas for the use and enjoyment of the unit owners;

G. Two parking spaces for each dwelling unit on the same lot with the main building shall be provided. Of these, one space ten feet wide by twenty feet long shall be enclosed and located in a garage, in a subterranean facility, or in an elevated parking structure; adequate improved ingress and egress shall be provided in accordance with city standards. Additionally, guest parking shall be provided as follows: one space for a two unit development; and for three units or more, at ten percent of the required parking, and where such percentage is below the halfway breakpoint, it will be rounded downward, and where such percentage is above the halfway breakpoint, it will be rounded upward. All guest parking spaces shall be clearly identified and easily accessible and not hindered by any mechanical or electronic devices or appurtenances; and

H. Any other information which, in the opinion of the community development director, will assist in determining whether the proposed project would be consistent with the purposes of this chapter. (Ord. 1629 § 15, 2003; prior code § 10-2.23)

17.12.050 Inspections.

Upon the receipt of a property report and structural pest report, the building official shall cause an inspection to be made of all buildings and structures in the proposed condominium conversion or stock cooperative. The building official shall prepare an inspection report identifying all items in violation of the Uniform Housing Code and any additional equipment or facilities he determines to be deteriorated and hazardous. The initial inspection report shall be presented to the developer who shall correct all violations of the Uniform Housing Code and repair or replace any equipment or facilities determined to be deteriorated or hazardous by the property report or building division inspection.

The developer shall also repair or replace any damaged or infested area in need of repair or replacement as shown on the structural pest report. (Prior code § 10-2.23.1)

17.12.060 Planning and environmental quality commission and council action.

A. An application for a condominium conversion (or conversion of rental housing to a stock cooperative) shall not be granted or conditionally granted unless the planning and environmental quality commission and council determine that the conversion is consistent with the public health, safety and welfare and with the General Plan of the City and the Housing Element thereof. In making such determination, the Commission and Council may consider such factors relevant to the public health, safety, or welfare as appear in each particular case including, but not limited to, whether the proposed conversion, either of itself or when considered in conjunction with trends toward condominium conversion in the community, would result in:

1. A major displacement of tenants; or

2. A scarcity of rental units which would preclude the reasonable mobility of tenants and an increase in rental costs justified by any market force other than that of scarcity; or

3. A tendency to diminish planning goals which encourage open occupancy and promote low and moderate income housing; or

4. Vacancy factors indicative of a shortage of rental housing in the community.

B. In further consideration of the tentative or final map, the commission and council shall also consider those provisions set forth in Sections 66473.5 and 66474 of the Government Code of the state.

C. As a condition of approval, the applicant shall be required to pay relocation assistance in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 2.32 of this code. (Prior code § 10-2.24)

17.12.070 Map approval.

A tentative or final map may be approved, denied or conditionally approved based on the criteria set forth in this chapter, including the provisions of Section 17.12.060. (Prior code § 10-2.25)

17.12.080 Certificates of use and occupancy.

In addition to the requirements for map approval, even if applications (maps) are accepted and approved by the city, a developer shall obtain a certificate of use and occupancy prior to the sale, lease, use or occupancy of any building, unit or structure approved for a condominium conversion or a stock cooperative pursuant to this chapter. This is required in recognition of the general finding that deficient housing and deterioration has a detrimental effect on individuals, neighborhoods and the community and in further recognition of the special problems and concerns concomitant with transitions from an apartment dwelling to a condominium or stock cooperative, including, but not limited to:

A. Structural deficiencies of buildings subject to conversion or transition to a stock cooperative;

B. Unsuspecting condominium purchasers who are generally unprepared and perhaps unwilling to cope with significant repairs; and

C. Certain conditions and factors, such as noise, which constitute a substantial detriment to the more permanent owner-resident in contrast to the apartment dweller. (Prior code § 10-2.26)

17.12.090 Certificates of use and occupancy – Applications.

The application for a certificate of use and occupancy shall be made to the building official. Such application shall include the following:

A. Any information updating or amending the property and structural pest reports previously submitted by the applicant with the application for tentative tract or parcel map approval. Such information shall include actions taken by the developer pursuant to any deficiencies or problems specified in the property and structural pest reports or building official’s inspection report; and

B. Proof of compliance with Section 66427.1 of the Government Code of the state regarding notices to tenants and tenants’ rights to purchase as set forth in said section. (Prior code § 10-2.27)

17.12.100 Certificates of use and occupancy – Issuance.

The building official shall cause a final inspection of all buildings and structures to be made prior to the issuance of a certificate of occupancy. The building official shall then mark the inspection report to show the corrections, repairs and replacements which have been made. The property report shall be presented by the developer to each prospective purchaser of any interest in a condominium or stock cooperative at least twenty days prior to the consummation of sale or exchange, which means the signing of final documents at the close of escrow. (Prior code § 10-2.28)

17.12.110 Additional requirements.

In addition to compliance with the provisions set forth in Sections 17.12.080 through 17.12.100 of this chapter, the following requirements shall be met as a condition to the granting of the certificate of use and occupancy:

A. Unless the building official finds that such would be impracticable, the consumption of gas and electricity within each dwelling unit shall be separately metered so that the unit owner can be separately billed for each utility and a water shut-off valve shall be provided for each unit.

B. Unless determined to be impracticable by the building official, any specific factors which cause or contribute to undue noise or vibrations shall be corrected.

C. If all of the aforementioned conditions are met and satisfied, a certificate of use and occupancy shall be granted. (Prior code § 10-2.29)

17.12.120 Advertising.

A developer shall make no advertising use of such certificate of use and occupancy or the fact that such certificate has been issued. (Prior code § 10-2.30)

17.12.130 Severability.

If any section, subsection, clause or phrase of this chapter is for any reason held to be invalid or unconstitutional by the decision of any court of competent jurisdiction, such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of this chapter. The council declares that it would have passed this chapter, and each part hereof, irrespective of the fact that any part hereof be declared invalid or unconstitutional. (Prior code § 10-2.31)