Landlord Imposes Smoking Ban on 2,000 California Apartments


It has recently become legal for California landlords to ban apartment renters from smoking in their units, but few landlords are doing so.

In a decision affecting nearly 2,000 units in 13 apartment complexes, the Towbes Group Inc. of Santa Barbara said it had become the largest apartment portfolio in California to impose a no-smoking policy on units. individual and common areas.

As of this month, new residents of the Towbes Group apartments in Ventura, Goleta, Santa Maria, Lompoc and Santa Barbara will no longer be able to smoke in their units. Residents who moved in earlier have until the end of the year to comply with the new restrictions.

In addition to addressing second-hand smoke issues, the lighting ban offers homeowners a financial boost, said Jim Carrillo, vice president of Towbes. His business “turns” about 1,000 units a year, which means they need to be cleaned for new residents. The process costs about twice as much if the last tenant was a smoker.

“You can mask it with paint, but to totally remove the residue you have to scrape the walls,” Carrillo said, then apply a primer and several coats of paint. Countertops and cabinets may also require intense cleaning treatments.

The owner was partly inspired to make the change after spending $ 4000 on insulation, caulking and other efforts to find and cover all possible openings between a smoker’s and a non-smoker’s apartment.

Since a majority of the company’s tenants were non-smokers, company officials said to themselves, “Why not become a non-smoker? Carrillo said.

The state legislature approved a law that came into effect in January allowing landlords to ban smoking in rental housing.

Developer Sares-Regis made a new 580-unit apartment complex in Pasadena smoke-free last year, even though the state’s decision was not in place. Renters and visitors who felt compelled to take a breather could be seen lighting up across the street from the 8-acre Westgate Apartments near Old Pasadena.

Embassy Suites Valencia hotel sells for almost $ 20 million

A sign of growing investor demand for hotels, the Embassy Suites Valencia hotel was sold for $ 19.6 million to a Newport Beach real estate investment company.

Clearview Hotel Capital purchased the 156-room inn from Cerberus Capital Management, a New York financier. Cerberus funded the development of the hotel on Westinghouse Place in Valencia. It was completed in 2007, near the last peak of the real estate market.

Clearview bought the property for less than its construction cost, Jones Lang LaSalle real estate broker John Strauss said. Meanwhile, hotel occupancy rates and room rates in Los Angeles County increased in 2011 and are set to do so again this year.

“Investors are interested in buying at this point in the real estate cycle after the 2009 downturn,” Strauss said.

They have a strong appetite for hotels, he said, as the hospitality industry improves and few new hotel competitors are on the horizon. The recession almost brought commercial real estate development to a halt and created a void in the pipeline of new properties.

“For the medium to long term, there is a new limited supply,” Strauss said.

Sport Chalet to Open Downtown LA Mall Figat7th Store

Sport Chalet Inc., a longtime Southern California sporting goods retailer, has agreed to open a store in downtown Los Angeles.

La Canada Flintridge will set up an outlet in Figat7th, a shopping center at the intersection of Figueroa and 7th Street that is undergoing a $ 40 million renovation by owner Brookfield Office Properties.

Sports Chalet will join Target as an anchor in the mall, which is slated to reopen in the fall. Target Inc. announced in 2010 that it would take over space once occupied by Macy’s and Bullock’s department stores. The new target is to be an urban model that will be smaller than most and offer a different mix of merchandise, with a strong emphasis on food and basic household items.

Sport Chalet will occupy 26,800 square feet of space at the lower courtyard level of the mall, which opened in 1986. The renovation aims to improve its connection to the busy sidewalks of the city’s financial district near the Staples Center, Brookfield said.

The downtown population has grown significantly over the past decade.

“Our client definitely lives and works in the downtown community,” said Craig Levra, General Manager of Sport Chalet.

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