Candidate Nixon Proposes Sweeping Overhaul of Rent Regulations
Democratic gubernatorial challenger Cynthia Nixon recently released her plan to overhaul rent regulations. Nixon is promising to work with state lawmakers to reclaim and protect all units that were removed from rent stabilization through vacancy decontrol. She is seeking to re-regulate all of the apartments that are still rentals and were lost as a result of vacancy decontrol.
In 2019, New York’s rent regulation laws are set to expire. Nixon points to five areas of focus for rent reform. She promises to work with lawmakers to:
- End the vacancy decontrol process, which destabilizes apartments once rent reaches $2733;
- End the 20 percent vacancy bonus, which allows owners to increase rent each time an apartment is vacated;
- Require owners to base all future rent increases on the current amount the tenant pays even if the tenant is paying a preferential rent; and
- Revisit the rent increases from individual apartment improvements and major capital improvements. Nixon supports making these increases temporary and she’d like to change the way the state housing agency reviews the extent and quality of claimed renovations before approving these kinds of adjustments.
Currently, rent-stabilization laws are limited to buildings with at least six units, those built before 1974, and in eight counties—the five boroughs of New York City, Westchester, Rockland, and Nassau Counties. Nixon proposes to extend rent regulation to new classes of tenants such as people in apartments built after 1974, people living outside the eight counties who could opt into the stabilization law, and people in smaller buildings not covered by rent stabilization.