Serving Larchmont Village, Hancock Park, and the Greater Wilshire neighborhoods of Los Angeles since 2011.

Tenants at 410 N. Rossmore Told to Welcome New Tenants

410 N. Rossmore is welcoming new housing-insecure tenants while still trying to move out longer-term tenants.


After months of being told they should accept relocation packages to move out so the building owners could complete long needed repairs at 410 N. Rossmore Avenue prior to a major remodel, the 15 or so tenants remaining in the building were advised recently that they would be getting some new neighbors.

In a letter sent to tenants on March 22, Richard Loring, Associate AIA, VP Development, ESI Ventures told tenants the building owners are continuing to work on securing building permits, but have “decided, in conjunction with CD5, to work with two non-profit organizations [Peace4Kids, which assists young people aging out of the foster system, and Tiny Town CA, which helps single mothers with young children] to offer housing to folks that are currently unsheltered or living in housing that is not secure.”

“I intend to welcome these folks into our building with open arms and hope everyone else feels the same way I do,” concluded Loring.

Loring’s letter was news to CD5 staff.

“It appears that building ownership previously initiated permitting requests with Building and Safety for the addition of an extra 5 stories back in June of 2021,” CD5 Spokesperson Alison Simard told the Buzz.  But “there has been no activity on this filing since September of 2021. We have never been briefed on any such plans nor has the applicant asked for assistance. Presumably the building would need to be empty to accomplish such a significant remodel. While several tenants have left voluntarily, the remaining tenants in the building are protected by the Rent Stabilization Ordinance and can only be forced to vacate were there to be a Tenant Habitability Plan filed with the Los Angeles Housing Department. There has been no filing to date.”

CD5 staff added that they have not been asked to get involved in the housing of anyone going into the building, but would be willing to consider any programs that help unsheltered families.

Several tenants at the building agreed to speak to the Buzz about these new developments, but asked us to withhold their names for fear of reprisal from Loring, who lives in the building. Most said they were shocked that after being told they had to vacate to rehabilitate an unsafe building, Loring would move young adults and moms with small children into the building.

“We have been hearing for months that the building is not safe and needs major upgrades,” one resident said. “If it’s not safe, why would they add more tenants to the building, when they are trying to move us?” she added, asking how the building could be too unsafe for the current tenants to stay, yet safe enough for these people who need housing.

Several of the tenants also said they wonder if this is a genuine offer of housing to people who really need a helping hand, or whether it’s a more cynical manipulation of housing-insecure young adults and moms struggling with domestic violence. Most of the tenants we talked to said they see it as the latest in a series of efforts to push them out of the building.

In a recent meeting with CD5 staff, tenants expressed their frustration with current management of the building, which has been aggressively asking tenants to move since the current owners acquired the building in late 2019. One tenant recalled being contacted on Christmas Eve to discuss a relocation package. Tenants say that Loring and his colleagues have created a false sense of urgency that construction is imminent only to have deadlines come and go for more than a year now. One tenant said she was told as recently as last month that she would have to move out by July 1st of this year.

We have spoken with many of the remaining residents over the past two years, and last week we met with a number of them to discuss this latest development. Most are long-term tenants, who have lived in the building for a decade or more, and one has been in the building for 40 years. On average, the tenants are older, some over the age of 70, still working, and paying approximately $1,500 a month for their one bedroom or studio apartments. Some, but not all, have parking in the building, and all have been paying their rent throughout the pandemic. Everyone we spoke with told us they’d like to stay in the building because they can’t really afford to  live anywhere else.

When the building was sold in early 2020, there were tenants in 60 of the building’s 78 units. Also at the time, approximately 18 units were listed on temporary rentals websites, according to the tenants. In the past two years, the short-term rentals stopped, and all but 15 long-term tenants accepted buyout packages to leave the building. Loring told the Buzz that he personally negotiated 41 lease buyouts over the past two years. According to Loring, the average buyout package was $67,000, which is well above the city’s average of $22,000…but it’s also well below what the remaining tenants say it would cost them over the long term if they had to leave.  (One bedroom apartments in the neighborhood average $2,300 per month, according to one real estate website

The new tenants are being offered housing at a rate of $300 per unit, as per a licensing agreement Loring has signed with Peace4Kids, a non-profit that helps support young adults with experience in the foster care system. According to that organization’s founder Zaid Gayle, Loring, who is a longtime member of the board at Peace4Kids, made the offer to assist young adults until the permits for the building are secured.

“These young adults are aware there is tension in the building,” Gayle,  told the Buzz when we asked he was aware of the situation with the existing tenants. “We see this as temporary program that could enable [our clients] to save funds for six months and plan for those costs, to help them to prepare for independence. They understand the condition of the building and we are putting that into the agreement with the young folks.”

At this time there are two young adults who have already moved into the building and another six are considering the offer, which Gayle said might not be right for everyone because it’s only planned to be a 6-month occupancy.  Gayle said his organization will continue to offer programmatic support for the young adults, “individualized based on the needs of those young folks and our assessments of the needs.”

Gayle said his clients are very pragmatic about their options, and those that accept the offer see it as a stepping stone while being realistic about the situation.

The other non-profit involved in the temporary housing agreement is Tiny Town CA, which is based in Llanos, CA and offers transitional housing to women and children.  Representatives of that group told the Buzz they have already moved two families and two staff members into the building. They have also contracted with 410 N. Rossmore to pay $300 per unit through September 30, 20022.

“We find this to be a very generous and thoughtful gesture,” Tiny Town’s executive director Chanelle Scott wrote to the Buzz in an email.

Regarding assistance from CD5,  Scott told the Buzz the organization has “put in our request for support and are currently awaiting a discussion from CD5.”  When we spoke to CD5 staff, they told us they have not yet been contacted but would be willing to consider any programs that help unsheltered families.

In the meantime, Loring told us that the building is in much better shape now than when the new owners bought it…but tenants say conditions in the building have declined since it was sold, including a period last winter without any heat. They also complained that security is lax, with exterior doors left unlocked and missing outdoor lighting…and they said they had to live with loud noises while contractors bored holes in the building and dug large trenches around the property to examine the building’s foundation.  The tenants said they have filed several complaints with the City’s housing department, but no action has been taken, and other issues persist as well, as shown in the video below.  (Note that the shots of the leaks in the basement, shown here, were from last year…but the plumbing and ventilation issues in an occupied apartment and the laundry area, shown after the basement footage, are current video.)



Finally, we reported last fall that after more than two years of delays, the building owners were exploring all potential options for the building, including perhaps selling it. When we spoke to Loring for this story, he said there are currently no plans to sell, but the developers have now dropped the co-living concept because the intense parking requirements added extra delays to the permitting process.  Instead, he said, the owners still plan to add five stories to the structure, but all the units will be traditional apartments, larger than the current units.  (He said new renderings for the project will be available in 45-60 days).  He also told us that Domos Co-Living is now a minority investor in the project, with Beverly Hills-based ESI Ventures taking the lead and an 80% ownership stake, and assuming day-to-day responsibility for the building and its redevelopment.  Loring said he now expects to have permits for the project by September, which – along with the greater number of vacancies in the building at the moment – provided both the time and space to offer the temporary housing options to the two non-profit organizations.


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Patricia Lombard
Patricia Lombard
Patricia Lombard is the publisher of the Larchmont Buzz. Patty lives with her family in Fremont Place. She has been active in neighborhood issues since moving here in 1989. Her pictorial history, "Larchmont" for Arcadia Press is available at Chevalier's Books.

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