John Getzow, Serial Evictee in San Francisco

Did you know that there are 20 to 100 “serial evictees” in San Francisco, staying busy working the system, abusing property owners and abusing the court system?

According to the  SF Weekly article,  John Getzow is one of them, perhaps one of the more successful of them.  As stated in the article, each time he moves in, he tends to get away with an unpaid 45 days to an entire year of accomodations until he finally receives the boot.

John Getzow photo

John Getzow hiding his face


This article  states that Getzow was one of the most successful “serial evictees” in San Francisco, a group of tenants who take advantage of the city’s lenient courts and tenant-support nonprofits to tie up landlords in court for months while they live practically rent-free in one of the most expensive cities in the country.

Depending on the vigilance of the landlord, a seasoned serial evictee like Getzow can get away with a minimum of 45 days and sometimes up to an entire year of free rent.  [I’d suggest that it’s not “free” rent that serial evictees get — it’s stolen rent] The actual number of serial evictees operating in San Francisco is difficult to track, but some attorneys who specialize in representing landlords estimate there are between 20 and 100.

Getzow has eviction records dating back to 1992 in San Diego, and, the article reports, has also been evicted in Walnut Creek and Los Angeles.  But it seems to be in San Francisco that he has done the most damage, likely a result of the highly pro-tenant policies of that city.  The following 9 unlawful detainer cases were filed on John Getzow in San Francisco:

In 2002, Kamran Ardebilchi filed an unlawful detainer Ardebilchi v Getzow UD on John Getzow.
In 2003, the Granada Inc filed an unlawful detainer on John Getzow. Granada Inc v Getzow UD
Again in 2003, Harry Orbelian filed an unlawful detainer on John Getzow, Orbelian v Getzow UD  It took Mr Orbelian about 5 months to get his property back.
In 2004, American Hotels filed an unlawful detainer on John Getzow,  American v Getzow and it took them 9 months to get their property back in that case.
IN 2006, James Babcock filed an unlawful detainer on John Getzow,  Babcock   and it took 5 months to get his property back.
In 2007, Neveo Mosser filed an unlawful detainer on John Getzow,   Mosser v Getzow UD
Later in 2007, Myles O’Reilly filed an unlawful detainer on John Getzow, OReilly v Getzow UD and it took 5 to 6 months to remove him from the premises.
In 2009, Lawrence Saw filed an unlawful detainer on John Getzow,  Saw v Getzow UD    and it took 4 months to remove him.
Then in 2014, John Stewart Company filed an unlawful detainer on John Getzow,  Stewart v Getzow UD    and it took 1 year and 3 months to remove him in that case.

Once a serial evictee occupies a unit, a number of state laws kicks in to guarantee a minimum 45-day free stay. In San Francisco, which has some of the most progressive rental policies in the state, there are numerous free services and programs for tenants. These include the San Francisco Tenants Union, Bay Area Legal Aid, the city-run San Francisco Residential Rent Stabilization and Arbitration Board, and several nonprofits that are largely city-funded, such as the Bar Association of San Francisco and the Eviction Defense Collaborative, the latter of which receives about $800,000 annually from the city. The city’s rental ordinance also requires the three-day notice to include a sentence telling tenants where they can get legal advice on eviction proceedings. And San Francisco is one of the only cities in the country in which the courts require that evictees should be represented by an attorney.

See the articles about Getzow and serial evictees in this city:

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