Rational Eviction: How Landlords Use Evictions in Response to Rent Control


Rent control policies seek to ensure affordable and stable housing for current ten- ants; however, they also increase the incentive for landlords to evict tenants since rents re-set when tenants leave. We exploit variation across zip codes in policy exposure to the 1994 rent control referendum in San Francisco to study the effects of rent control on eviction behavior. We find that for every 1,000 newly rent controlled units in a zip code, there were 12.05 additional eviction notices filed in that zip code and an addi- tional 4.6 wrongful eviction claims. These effects were concentrated in low income zip codes.

Nicole Holz
Nicole Holz
Economics PhD candidate

I am a doctoral candidate in economics at Northwestern University. I study questions in health economics and public economics.