In the News

Four Lawsuits Target Owners Abusing J-51 Tax Program

December 20, 2017    

Four class action lawsuits were filed recently against three owners believed to be among the biggest abusers of the J-51 tax program in the city. The suits were filed in New York County Supreme Court after an investigation by the non-profit watchdog group, Housing Rights Initiative (HRI).

New Smoking Policy Rule Goes into Effect Next Year

September 19, 2017    

For years, the city has banned smoking in the common areas of buildings with 10 or more apartments. Beginning in February 2018, the city will extend this prohibition to include buildings with three or more units. In addition, Mayor de Blasio recently signed a measure into law that will require...

Bedbug Law Update Will Take Effect for 2018

September 19, 2017    

As a result of Local Law 69 of 2017, starting Nov. 6, 2017, all owners must attempt to obtain bedbug infestation history from tenants including any remedial or eradication methods. The new law requires owners to share written bedbug infestation histories with tenants on an annual basis. Notices...

Mayor's Plan Targets Greenhouse Gas Emissions of Buildings

September 19, 2017    

Mayor Bill de Blasio recently proposed new mandates that would force building owners to make sharp reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. The initiative would mandate that owners of existing buildings larger than 25,000 square feet invest in more efficient heating and cooling systems,...

DHCR Issues New Fact Sheet Regarding Discrimination Against Foreign-Born Tenants

September 19, 2017    

The DHCR recently issued Fact Sheet #45 pertaining to the housing rights of foreign-born tenants. It reminds owners about the laws regarding discrimination, harassment, and retaliation pertaining to immigrant tenants.

City Council Passes Package of Anti-Harassment and Tenant Safety Bills

August 18, 2017    

The New York City Council recently passed a package of bills intended to provide tenants greater protection from landlord harassment and unsafe conditions. Several of the bills redefine the legal parameters of tenant harassment. Some of the bills also change penalties for harassment. Others were...

City Council Enacts Low-Income Tenants’ Right to Counsel

July 27, 2017    

The New York City Council recently enacted legislation establishing a right to counsel for low-income tenants in Housing Court. Currently, the bill is awaiting the mayor’s signature before it can become law. The bill, Int. 214-A, was proposed more than two years ago but wasn’t...

De Blasio Announces $32M Neighborhood Rat Reduction Plan

July 27, 2017    

Mayor Bill de Blasio recently announced a $32 million, multi-agency plan to reduce the city’s rat population that targets the three most infested parts of city: the Grand Concourse area, Chinatown/East Village/Lower East Side, and Bushwick/Bedford-Stuyvesant. This interagency initiative...

Council Speaker Hopefuls Urge City to Reform Property Tax System

July 27, 2017    

City Council speaker hopefuls are urging the de Blasio administration to support a lawsuit challenging the city’s property tax system. Council members Donovan Richards, Mark Levine, Corey Johnson, Ritchie Torres, and Jumaane Williams, all of whom, except Torres, have shown interest in...

Prolific NYC Owner Pleads Guilty, Must Pay $5M Settlement

June 22, 2017    

Steve Croman, an owner of 140 buildings who’s known for harassing his tenants, pleaded guilty recently to charges of fraudulently refinancing loans and committing tax fraud. Under the terms of his plea, Croman will serve one year on Rikers Island and is forced to pay a $5 million tax...

Annual Report Describes State of NYC Renters and Their Homes

June 22, 2017    

The NYU Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy recently published its annual State of New York City’s Housing and Neighborhoods report. The report provides a compendium of 2016 data and analysis about New York City’s housing, land use, demographics, and quality of life for...

Water Board Won't Raise Rates for FY 2018

June 22, 2017    

On May 18, the NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) presented the NYC Water Board with its recommended approach to billing rates for the coming year. The DEP recommended that the board take no action on water rates. And at a public hearing on June 16th, the Water Board confirmed that...