Mayor Signs Legislation Extending Rent Stabilization Laws

On March 27, Mayor de Blasio signed legislation to extend rent regulation laws for the next three years. The laws will remain in effect until April 1, 2021. A vacancy rate below 5 percent allows the state rent regulation laws to continue to be effective in New York City. The city’s vacancy rates are determined and measured by the Housing and Vacancy Survey, which is conducted every three years. According to the 2017 Housing and Vacancy Survey, New York City has a 3.63 percent vacancy rate.              

In a press release, the de Blasio administration outlined reforms it intends to prioritize to retain the stock of rent-stabilized apartments in New York City. These reforms include:

  • End High-Rent Vacancy Decontrol: The city is calling for the elimination of vacancy decontrol. Currently, a vacant apartment with a rent of $2,733.75 per month may be deregulated.
  • End the Vacancy Allowance: The city is calling for the elimination of the 20 percent increase in monthly rent when tenants vacate an apartment. This allowance has created strong incentives for bad actors to pressure tenants out of their homes in the hopes of faster-rising rents.
  • Limit Individual Apartment Improvement (IAI) and Major Capital Improvement (MCI) Increases: The city is calling for limits on how landlords can use permanent rent increases for building-wide or individual apartments. These increases are utilized as a mechanism for driving up legal rents to reach the threshold for rent deregulation.