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Landlords must disclose foreclosure

Prospective tenants, as of January 2013, will have the right to be informed of possible foreclosure of a residence they are planning to rent.

Gov. Jerry Brown signed SB 1191 into law on Sept. 25. It was authored by state Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, and is another in a series of constituent-proposed laws from his annual "There Oughta Be a Law" contest.

"In this foreclosure crisis, much of the focus has been on homeowners, and renters have gotten lost in the shuffle," Sen. Simitian said in a written statement. "(This law) is going to ensure that renters don't get their homes yanked out from under them, and are fully informed before they sign a lease on the dotted line."

Samantha James of San Jose came up with the idea about a year ago after having paid a security deposit to rent an apartment, only to discover two months after furnishing and moving into the unit that the building was in foreclosure proceedings.

Dave Boyce

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