It's not that hard to get a HELOC, only question is if you can stomach the rate. Home equity loan is basically full monty as I understand it, probably not what you want.
I'd start by pretty up my revolving balances (if possible), then see where I was on a couple of critical credit scores, and then start talking to lenders, credit unions are good places to start. HELOC's aren't nearly as standardized as a second mortgage / home equity loan is, so lenders are all over the map as a result.
Since you're a fellow resident in San Pedro, if it were me I'd talk to Unify CU (formerly Western FCU) locally first and maybe only since they explicitly will do a HELOC on multi-tenancy places and their UW guidelines aren't onerous; your likely only issue is finding places that will do a HELOC for your multi-tenant situation: if we were talking single family house you probably would be swimming in offers heh.