Measure MM Unit Registration
Most rental units that are partially covered by Berkeley’s Rent Ordinance (not rent controlled, but covered by the good cause for eviction and security deposit interest provisions) are now required to be registered with the Rent Board.
Berkeley voters approved registration requirements for partially covered units by passing Measure MM in the November 2020 election. Registration includes:
- Unit registration--providing initial unit information and paying an annual fee for each unit
- Tenancy registration--providing tenancy information annually
ANNUAL REGISTRATION FEES WERE DUE MONDAY, JULY 3, 2023.
Most Units: $178 per unit.
Affordable housing projects managed by a nonprofit with an operative regulatory agreement with the City of Berkeley through its Affordable Housing Trust Fund program: $37 per unit.
The Rent Ordinance imposes a 100% penalty on payments not received or postmarked by the due date. Failure to properly register Measure MM units may be a defense to an eviction lawsuit. Most property owners may be eligible for a waiver of part or all of the penalty if their account is fully paid by September 30, 2023. For more information, you can reach the Registration Unit in the following ways:
Fees & Penalties
FY 2023-24 annual registration fees were due Monday, July 3, 2023.
- Most units: $178 per unit (Resolution 23-07)
- Affordable housing projects managed by a nonprofit with an operative regulatory agreement with the City of Berkeley through its Housing Trust Fund program: $37 per unit (Resolution 23-08)
The Rent Ordinance requires that payments not received in the Rent Board office or postmarked by the due date be assessed a 100% penalty. Every six months another 100% penalty is assessed, so it is important to pay registration fees and resolve penalties as soon as possible. Owners can request a waiver of penalties but must pay all outstanding registration fees before a waiver request will be considered. Most property owners may be eligible for a waiver of part or all of the penalty if their account is fully paid by September 30, 2023. For more information, call (510) 981-7368 Ext. 2, email at RentRegistry@berkeleyca.gov, or request an appointment with a Registration Administrator by using our online appointment form.
The typical billing cycle
The Board’s Budget & Personnel Committee makes a recommendation to the full Board about setting the fee, which the Board typically adopts in April or May. All Rent Board and Committee meetings are public, and your participation is encouraged. Sign up for our Board and Committee Meeting email lists to receive notification of meeting dates, agendas, and participation instructions. Registration fee bills are typically sent to owners in May. The registration fee is due by July 1 (or the following Monday if July 1 falls on a weekend). Fees must be received in the Rent Board office or postmarked by the due date to be considered timely.
Rental units that must now be registered
- New construction units (units with a certificate of occupancy issued after 1980)
- Most single-family homes
- Most condominiums
Units that are exempt from Measure MM registration requirements
- Single-family homes or condominiums rented for up to two years IF the property owner: (1) owns no more than one residential unit in Berkeley; (2) lived in the unit as their primary residence for at least 365 consecutive days immediately prior to rental; (3) will reoccupy the unit as their primary residence when the rental ends; and (4) specifies the rental term, not to exceed 24 months, in the lease.
- Units with Section 8 or Shelter Plus tenancies
- Units that are occupied rent-free, owner-occupied, or for owner’s use only
Owners, if you believe a unit is exempt from Measure MM registration requirements, you must use the online portal to claim the exemption. Most questions regarding whether a unit needs to be registered can be answered by Registration staff. In rare cases, a formal determination may be necessary and owners can request an administrative determination of exempt status.
Unit status changes
If a unit changes from exempt to non-exempt, the owner must register it with the Rent Board within 60 days of the change and pay a prorated fee. If a non-exempt unit becomes exempt, the owner can update the unit status using the online portal at any time.
Tenancy registration for qualifying partially covered units will now include:
- Tenancy start date
- Number of tenants
- Starting and current rent
- Date of the most recent rent increase
- Housing services included in the rent
- Number of bedrooms in the unit
After the initial registration, owners are only required to report changes, including rent increases, once a year during the annual billing cycle. They do not have to update the Rent Board each time there is a new tenancy or a change to an existing tenancy in a unit.
Failure to Register
In addition to the monetary penalties described above for failure to pay registration fees, failure to properly register may also be a defense to an eviction lawsuit. Proper registration includes filing all Rent Board forms, including "Registration Statement for Partially Covered Units" and "Tenancy Registration Form For Partially Covered (Measure MM) Units." All eviction lawsuits (unlawful detainer complaints) are filed in superior court, and the Rent Board cannot provide legal advice.
Registration fees will fund enhanced services, including more comprehensive housing counseling on local and state laws related to evictions, security deposits, habitability issues, the Tenant Buyout Ordinance, and the Tenant Protection Ordinance. The Rent Board will also provide voluntary mediation services to tenants and property owners of Measure MM registered units.