San Francisco Man Has to Pay Triple Rent After Lover’s Suicide

AP Photo
The Associated Press

Merely two weeks after Christopher Holden’s partner of five years took his own life, the management company for the San Francisco studio he and Jonathan Conte had been splitting for $1,390 a month told Holden that his rent would be nearly doubled, and that the rent-controlled price could not be honored because the apartment was under his late partner’s name.

Holden, 42, will go from paying $695 a month to $2,150 per month at his Alamo Square studio apartment — more than triple the cost of his original rent. Ironically, the San Francisco Chronicle notes, he works for a nonprofit that is devoted to helping elderly people who are at risk of becoming homeless.

Holden tells the Chronicle that will likely have to find a new job or move to another city. All of this is exacerbated by the fact that he is still mourning Conte, 34, an intactivist who spoke out against male circumcision.

“I’m pretty astounded by the level of insensitivity by the management company,” Holden told the San Francisco Chronicle. “In this sort of housing climate, morals and ethics are thrown out the window for profit. It’s pretty insensitive and wretched to do that.”

The Chronicle notes that while in some cities, like New York, tenants are protected with succession rights in situations like Holden’s, which prevent landlords from implementing large rent increase when relatives or partners move out or pass away, San Francisco has no such protections.

Under the Costa-Hawkins Rental Housing Act of 1995, the landlord’s right to adjust rent to market rate nullifies the right to succession and allows a landlord to adjust rent on a unit to market rate when there is a change in occupancy.

In other words, the rent-controlled rate isn’t passed down to next-of-kin.

San Francisco residents have been experiencing a spate of drastic rent increases throughout the crowded, left-wing city.

Breitbart News recently noted the story of a North Beach resident who received a notice from his landlord that his rent was increasing from $1,800 to $8,000 per month, forcing him to make major life decisions.

Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter @AdelleNaz