May 29, 2022 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Santa Monica City Attorney’s Office Addresses Tenant Harassment At 3111 Fourth St:

Updated Sunday, June 29 – 10 am

Tenants at 3111 Fourth Street should be able to sleep easier after the Santa Monica City Attorney’s office announced Thursday it had finalized a settlement agreement regarding 32 harassment complaints filed against the owner of the 60-unit apartment building.

The tenants’ complaints arose after a new owner, M West Holdings, LLC, bought the property in July 2012 and hired Scott Properties Group, Inc. to manage the building.

Tenants claimed that M West and Scott Properties Group engaged in a pattern of harassment designed to empty the building of rent-controlled tenants so they could remodel and re-rent the units at much higher rents.

[Update] M West Holdings said all 32 complaints from the tenants had been dismissed, adding the final settlement was achieved with the cooperation of the Santa Monica City Attorney’s Office, M West, and Scott Properties Group.

As part of the settlement M West and Scott Properties followed a strict protocol for responding to tenant complaints by ensuring immediate communication at all times. Tenants also followed a strict protocol by putting their concerns in writing so that the company can resolve the problem within 48 hours.

“Tenants are very happy now. All sides had good points and we are glad to see that these issues were resolved amicably,” stated Scott Brody, owner of Scott Properties Group. “We now communicate very well with tenants on a regular basis, and send out emails every quarter to ensure we hear from each of our tenants. Since we began this process we have not received a negative response or complaint.”

Specifically, the tenants had alleged that the owner and manager:

— Imposed unfair new house rules and unilaterally changed lease terms, including charging $250 for replacement keys, limiting hours of access to laundry facilities, and prohibiting storage of items on decks and patios

— Intentionally made it more difficult to pay rent by discontinuing the practice of allowing tenants to pay rent onsite

— Failed to oversee construction at the property, leading to parking, security and other problems for tenants

— Refused to respond to tenant questions and complaints

Santa Monica Deputy City Attorney Eda Suh conducted a three-session mediation with the owners and their attorneys, using the Center for Civic Mediation. Under the resulting agreement, M West agreed to:

— Rescind the most problematic new house rules;

— Hire an onsite construction manager who will serve as liaison with tenants;

— File a “Means and Methods” plan with the City’s Building and Safety Division for all outstanding work.  This plan will detail how the work will impact the habitability of occupied units and will be given to tenants;

— Ensure strict compliance by staff and workers with Civil Code section 1954 which requires prior notice to tenants of any entries into apartments;

— Ensure that the onsite manager will accompany construction staff in and out of apartment units and periodically check up on staff working inside units;

— Follow a strict protocol for responding to tenant complaints; and

— Ensure that all tenants may use the same methods for paying rent including use of a secured drop-box at the building

Tenants are still able to pursue individual complaints that did not affect the whole property, such as claims that the new owner was attempting to enforce defunct pet and roommate rules that the prior owner had waived.

Other City departments have also worked to resolve problems at the property.

The City’s Code Compliance Division is addressing repair and code compliance issues. Rent Control staff is hearing rent decrease petitions based on the new owner taking away amenities.

The City will continue to monitor M West’s and Scott Properties’ compliance with the agreement for a period of 12 months.

in News
Related Posts

Seller of Bel Air Mansion Furious After Property Flops at Auction

May 27, 2022

May 27, 2022

Mansion on Sarbonne Road in Bel Air fails to meet $50 million reserve price By Sam Catanzaro The seller of...

Environmental Review Begins for West Los Angeles Civic Center Redevelopment

May 27, 2022

May 27, 2022

The West LA Commons set to bring 926 units of housing and 36,569 square feet of retail to Santa Monica...

Is Santa Monica’s Most Expensive Property Still a Bargain?

May 27, 2022

May 27, 2022

22,640 square-foot property on market for $69 million By Dolores Quintana The most expensive property in Santa Monica has been...

Must-Watch ‘Disruptive’ Appliance Experience Store Opens in West Los Angeles, Hosts Grand Opening in June

May 27, 2022

May 27, 2022

Howard’s West Los Angeles Experience Center opening at 900 La Brea Boulevard  By Susan Payne West Los Angeles is home...

Marina Del Rey Family Searches for Missing 29-Year-Old Son With Autism

May 27, 2022

May 27, 2022

J​​eremy Hansbrough missigns cine May 16 By Sam Catanzaro A Marina del Rey family is searching for their 29-year-old son...

Santa Monica Pier to Feature High-Flying Waving American Flag on  Ferris Wheel During Memorial Day Weekend

May 26, 2022

May 26, 2022

Pacific Park on the Santa Monica Pier’s Ferris wheel will feature a high-flying 130-feet tall, animated waving American flag throughout...

Message From Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Ben Drati

May 26, 2022

May 26, 2022

Dear Parents, Guardians, Staff and Community Members, Sadly, we have learned of another horrific school shooting, this time in the...

Three Juveniles in Hosptial Following Overdose in Santa Monica

May 26, 2022

May 26, 2022

Two females in critical but stable condition, third victim “alert and recovering” By Sam Catanzaro Three juveniles suffered an overdose...

John Adams Middle School Student Selected to Perform at Carnegie Hall

May 24, 2022

May 24, 2022

JAMS Student Grayson Fitzgerald named junior finalist for the 2022 middle school honors performance series at Carnegie Hall By Staff...

SMC Student Film “The War Within” Accepted into 2022 American Pavilion at Cannes

May 24, 2022

May 24, 2022

Three Santa Monica College Films Will Screen at In-Person Festival, including 2021 Best Student Film Winner “Broken Layers” and 2020’s...

Santa Monica City Council Looks to Shorten Meetings

May 24, 2022

May 24, 2022

Council to consider changes at Tuesday meeting By Dolores Quintana Santa Monica lawmakers are considering taking steps to shorten City...

Landmark Theater Official Closes on Pico

May 24, 2022

May 24, 2022

Pico Boulevard location closes Sunday By Sam Catanzaro The Landmark Theater on Pico Boulevard in Westwood has officially closed.  The...

Road Closures Expected During Demolition Of Parking Structure Three: Santa Monica Beat – May 23rd, 2022

May 23, 2022

May 23, 2022

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes.* Free Donuts At Randy’s Donuts For National Doughnut Day* Road Closures Expected...

Los Angeles Metro Sees 15.9 Percent Increase in Median Rent

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Median rent of $2,258, according to recent report By Dolores Quintana The ongoing pandemic has exacerbated the issues of housing...

New Renderings for Frank Gehry Hotel Development in Santa Monica

May 20, 2022

May 20, 2022

Project would include hotel, apartments, retail and a museum By Dolores Quintana Slowly but surely, plans for a  Frank Gehry-designed...