Rent Registration In Oakland – Information and FAQs

The Oakland City Council has adopted a requirement to establish a rent registry for all units subject to the Rent Adjustment Program (RAP) Fee, which went into effect July 3, 2023. Owners are required to annually register their residential rental units' rent and tenancy information. The 2024 deadline to register rent and tenancy information is July 1, 2024. Starting in 2025: Owners must confirm and/or update their units’ registered tenancy information annually by March 1st.

Register Online
Register Online
Rent Registration Forms
Rent Registration Forms
Do I need to register my unit?
Do I need to register my unit?

Posted: July 5th, 2023 12:00 AM

Last Updated: May 22nd, 2024 9:44 AM

Live Counseling Sessions for Rent Registry:  RAP will offer twice-weekly live counseling sessions through July 1, 2024 to help answer any rent registry questions you may have! Starting Monday, April 29, live counseling sessions will take place on:

Mondays: 10:00am-11:30am

Wednesdays: 10:00am-11:30am

Click here to join during the scheduled timeframes.

Read Ordinance

Click hereto read the ordinance amendment.

What is a rent registry? What does the new law require?

The Oakland City Council voted on June 21, 2022, to establish a rent registry. This requires owners of units subject to the Rent Adjustment Program (RAP) fee to report rent and tenancy data to the Oakland Rent Adjustment Program annually. More information on which units are covered by this requirement can be found here. Owners were required to register for the first time by July 3, 2023.

Annual Registration Renewal: Owners must confirm and/or update existing tenancy registration information no later than July 1, 2024.

Starting in 2025, owners must update or confirm their units’ tenancy data annually by March 1st.

Owners who do not meet this new requirement will not be able to file petitions for rent increases or impose rent increases, nor will they be able to file responses to tenants’ petitions. Furthermore, the new law establishes failure to register as an affirmative defense in most eviction actions.

Note: The rent registration requirement is separate from the RAP fee. No additional fee is associated with tenancy registration. Questions about the RAP fee or business taxes should be directed to the Business License Tax Office at (510) 238-3704 or BTWebSupport@oaklandca.gov.

Why did I receive a notice from the Rent Adjustment Program regarding my property?

In May 2024, the City of Oakland Rent Adjustment Program sent registration notices to owners of residential properties to advise them of Oakland’s rent registry requirement.

Alameda County records indicate that these properties could include at least one residential unit that is subject to the registration requirement when rented or available for rent. If you received the notice, you or a designated representative must register any units that are rented/available for rent. The deadline to register these units is July 1, 2024.

If there are no rental units on your property, or if you believe your units are exempt from the registration requirement for another reason, you or a designated representative should claim those units exempt from the registration requirement.

More information on which units need to be registered and which can be claimed exempt can be found here. If you choose to claim an unit exempt, you must provide supporting documentation. Instructions on what types of documents to provide are on page 2 of the Property Registration Form Instructions.

I registered my property last year – why did I receive a new Registration Notice?

Rent registration is required annually. Owners must annually update registered tenancy information or confirm that all registered tenancy information remains the same.

The 2024 deadline to renew/confirm registration is July 1, 2024. Renew registration here

Instructions for annual registration renewal can be found here

We strongly recommend registering online, as there is a significant delay in processing paper registration forms.

How do I register?

Owners may register their units by going to the online Rent Registry portal here. Property owners who wish to submit information using the online Rent Registry must provide an email address to create an account.

If you are registering a property for the first time: Access a Quick Guide to Registration, here

If you are renewing annual registration (confirming/updating previously registered tenancy information): Access a Quick Guide to Annual Registration Renewal, here.

To access a full Rent Registry User Guide, please click here.

*To access a Quick Guide in Spanish, please click here: GUÍA RÁPIDA PARA EL REGISTRO POR INTERNET

*To access a Quick Guide in Chinese, please click here: 網上登記快速指南

More information on Tenancy Registration can be found here
 

For record keeping and efficiency, property owners are strongly encouraged to use the online Rent Registry to submit their information.

If you need assistance with online registration, please contact us at rentregistry@oaklandca.gov.

Paper registration forms are also available here. Please note that submission of paper forms will cause significant delays in processing your information. 
 

How do I claim an exemption?

Owners may claim units exempt by going to the online Rent Registry portal here and using the Parcel Number/PIN information included in the registration notice. Owners may also claim an exemption by completing a Property Registration Form here (Section 13, “Claim an Exemption”).

Please note: Submission of paper forms will cause significant delays in processing the registration information.   

Owners who have not registered are unable to serve rent increases, file a petition, and/or answer a tenant petition with RAP. Furthermore, failure to register is an affirmative defense in most eviction actions.

What if I do not register my rental unit by the deadline?

Owners who do not register covered units by the July 1 deadline will not be able to file petitions for rent increases or impose rent increases, nor will they be able to file responses to tenants’ petitions. Furthermore, the new law establishes failure to register as an affirmative defense in most eviction actions.

I am trying to register my property online, but I do not have the required PIN. What should I do?

Contact RAP directly at rentregistry@oaklandca.gov to request the parcel number and PIN information needed to register the property. Please provide the following information along with your request:

1) Rental Property Address

2) Name of Owner of Record

3) Mailing Address of Owner of Record

4) Assessor Parcel Number

I just obtained a property, and I need to register it. What should I do?

Contact RAP directly at rentregistry@oaklandca.gov to request the necessary information to register the property. Please provide the following information along with your request:

1) Rental Property Address

2) Name of Owner of Record

3) Mailing Address of Owner of Record

4) Assessor Parcel Number

5) Proof of ownership, such as a grant deed

Which units must be registered?

All residential rental units subject to the Rent Adjustment Program Fee must be registered. This includes units that are subject to the Rent Adjustment Ordinance AND/OR units that are subject to the Just Cause for Eviction Ordinance.

Most residential rental units in Oakland that were built more than 10 years ago are subject to one or both of these ordinances and must be registered.

This includes the following:

  • Rented single-family homes
  • Rented condominiums
  • Rented Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs), junior ADUs, in-law units, or other additional dwelling units on a property
  • Vehicular residential facilities (VRFs), such as recreational vehicles and tiny homes on wheels, whether the occupant is renting the VRF and the space on which it is located, or only the space on which it is located.
  • Rented units in multifamily properties (2+ units) that are more than 10 years old

More information on which units must be registered and which units are exempt from the registration requirement can be found here.

What information is required to register a unit?

The following information is required to register a unit subject to the Rent Registry Ordinance.

  • Unit Address and Unit Number/Designation (i.e., #A, #1/2, #4A, etc.)
  • Start Date of current tenancy
  • Initial Rent of current tenancy
  • Current Rent
  • Date of last rent increase
  • Amount of last rent increase
  • Number of occupants
  • Security deposit provided at start of tenancy
  • Tenant Name
  • Tenant Email
  • Services included with the rent (i.e., utilities, laundry access, parking, etc.)
  • Utilities metering – Submetered, master metered, or unmetered
  • Reason that previous tenant vacated (i.e., voluntary vacancy, eviction for just cause, etc.)

I own a single-family home with an ADU. Do I need to register?

If either the single-family home OR the ADU is rented, then the rented unit(s) must be registered. The only exception is if the single-family home and the ADU are both ground-up new construction units (i.e., not created as a result of rehabilitation or conversion of existing residential space and built from the ground up) that received a Certificate of Occupancy within the past 10 years.

Rented in-law units, junior ADUs, and/or any other additional dwelling unit associated with the single-family home must be registered as well.

I own a single-family home and am renting it out. Do I need to register?

If the single-family home is rented, then it should be registered. The only exception is if the house was newly constructed within the past 10 years. If the owner lives in the house as their principal residence and rents out individual bedrooms, then the owner must register each bedroom as a its own covered rental unit.

I am trying to register a tenancy, and I cannot obtain all the required information about my tenants. What should I do?

Rent Adjustment Regulation Section 8.22.510 requires owners to make a lawful, good-faith effort to obtain all rent and tenancy information required by the Oakland Rent Registry Ordinance. If an owner makes a lawful, good-faith effort to obtain information and cannot, then the owner may offer their best approximation. If the information remains unknown, the owner can state that the information is not known.

The owner must also declare under penalty of perjury that they have made a good faith effort to obtain all information, and that the owner is providing all information to the best of their ability.

Have more questions on registering a tenancy? Go to our “Tenancy Registration FAQ” page.

I received a letter stating that I need to register a property, but I am no longer the owner. What should I do?

Please inform RAP of the change via email at rentregistry@oaklandca.gov, with the subject line: ‘Change of Ownership’.

Please include in your message:

1) The rental property address

2) Assessor parcel (APN) number

3) The date of transfer

RAP will reach out to the new owner to inform them of the registration requirement.

I received a letter stating that I need to register my single-family home, but I live here and am not renting out any part of my property. What should I do?

Fully owner-occupied units are exempt from the registration requirement. If you received a letter to register, and you owner-occupy your home, then you should claim your unit exempt from the rent registry so as not to receive further registration communications.

Owners can claim these units exempt by going to the online Rent Registry and using the APN/PIN information included in the letter, or by completing a Property Registration Form (Section 13, “Claim an Exemption”)
 

What is the benefit of a rent registry?

A rent registry provides a number of benefits. One of the most important ones is that it helps both owners and tenants understand better whether or not their rents are in compliance with Oakland’s Rent Adjustment Ordinance. Owners will be able to more easily calculate rent increases, and tenants can verify them.

Who will have access to the data in the rent registry?

Property owners will have access to all tenancy data for the buildings they own/manage. Tenants will have access to their own unit’s tenancy data.

Note: Personal, identifying information such as tenants’ names, phone numbers, and email addresses will NOT be publicly accessible through the rent registry.

Have Questions About the Rent Registry?

Contact the Rent Registry team at rentregistry@oaklandca.gov.

Please include the property address you are inquiring about and whether you are an owner or tenant.

Or call a RAP housing counselor at (510) 238-3721, Option 2, during our normal business hours: Monday through Thursday, from 9:30 am to 4:30 pm.

“How to Register” Workshops

RAP is offering four workshops during May and June 2024. In these workshops, staff will go over the step-by-step registration process, as well as the process of claiming an exemption. Staff will also answer questions about the registration process.  Register for a workshop here.

Additional Assistance

Live Counseling Sessions for Rent Registry:

Mondays: 10:00 AM-11:30 AM

Wednesdays: 10:00 AM-11:30 AM

Click here to join during the scheduled timeframes.