Vote paves way for higher rents for stabilized NYC apartments

A vote by the city’s Rent Guidelines Board on Thursday paved the way for what could be the biggest rent hike in a decade for the Big Apple’s nearly one million rent-controlled apartments.

In a 5-4 preliminary vote, council approved rent increases in the range of 2-4% for one-year leases and 4-6% for two-year leases.

If council’s final vote falls within those ranges, they would represent the biggest increases since 2013, when council under then-mayor Mike Bloomberg approved 4% increases for leases of a year and 7.75% for two-year leases.

The range was not as wide as some tenant advocates feared or landlord groups hoped – after a council report estimated landlords would need increases of up to 9% on rents. two-year leases to make costs.

But the Legal Aid Society continues to push for a “wholesale freeze” when the board takes its final vote next month, the group said in a statement.

“We condemn the board for voting to increase rents for some of our most vulnerable neighbors, people from low-income communities of color, especially when New Yorkers are still under financial shock of the pandemic and that the local unemployment rate remains one of the highest in the country,” said Adriene Holder, lead civil practice attorney.

In a preliminary vote, the city’s Rent Guidelines Board approved rent increases in the range of 2-4% for one-year leases and 4-6% for tenancies. two years.
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“Tonight’s vote ignores this glaring reality. However, council can still vote for a freeze in June, and we encourage members to listen to the cries of tenants, our customers mired in the Hobson’s choice between groceries, medical needs and other essentials, and paying the rent.

Community Housing Improvement Program, a group of landlords, criticized the board for not following the ranges in its own report and said the hikes were not necessary to make a profit, but to keep up with rising housing costs. costs and maintenance.

“Housing has a cost. The RGB spends a lot of time and energy calculating these costs,” Jay Martin, group chief executive, said in a statement.

Housing activists are protesting rent increases by the Rent Guidance Board which was appointed by Mayor Adams.
Some have condemned the decision, saying it largely targets low-income communities of color.
Steve Sanchez/Pacific Press/Shutterstock

“Yet again, the Council ultimately rejected the data and offered a range that does not cover the increased costs their own reports predict.”

Last year the council agreed to a six-month rent freeze to allow for pandemic recovery, with a 1.5% increase for one-year leases and a 2.5% increase for the second semester.

All council members are appointed by the mayor, although Mayor Eric Adams appointed only three of the nine members today. The other members were appointed by former mayor Bill de Blasio, during which administrative rents were frozen three times and remained in the low single digits.

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