California law prioritizes people over corporate home-buyers

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Tenants, affordable housing groups and local governments will get first crack at buying foreclosed homes under a measure approved Monday by Gov. Gavin Newsom.

The bill is designed to keep corporations from snapping up homes and letting some fall into disrepair as they did during the Great Recession. The issue drew national attention a year ago when several homeless mothers calling themselves Moms 4 Housing moved into a vacant, corporate-owned house in West Oakland.

It was among 15 bills Newsom signed into law as renters and home-buyers again struggle during mass layoffs prompted by the pandemic. The governor said the measures “will directly lead to more affordable opportunities for renters and homeowners.”

The law bars sellers of foreclosed homes from bundling them at auction for sale to a single buyer. In addition, it will allow tenants, families, local governments, affordable housing nonprofits and community land

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