What to Do if Second Family Member to Get Pass-on Rights Won't Pay Rent Hike

July 30, 2015    

For rent-stabilized and rent-controlled apartments, a “family member” of the tenant may have the right to a rent-stabilized renewal lease or protection from eviction in an apartment under rent control when the tenant dies or permanently leaves the apartment.

RGB Freezes One-Year Renewal Rents, Sets Two-Year Increase at 2 Percent

June 30, 2015    

On June 29, in a 7 to 2 vote, the city’s Rent Guidelines Board decided to freeze rents for rent-stabilized tenants with one-year leases. This had never been done before in the board’s 46-year history. With the rent freeze, Mayor de Blasio delivered on a campaign promise to freeze one...

Take Four Steps When Tenant Withholds Rent

May 26, 2015    

A difficult situation an owner may face is when a tenant withholds all or part of the monthly rent over a claimed problem in his apartment. For example, the tenant may claim no heat or hot water or a broken dishwasher. If you investigate the problem and find that it exists, you must then decide...

An Owner's Primer on High-Rent/High-Income Deregulation

May 11, 2015    

When legal rents in rent-controlled and rent-stabilized apartments reach a level of $2,500 per month, two things occur. These apartments are now subject to vacancy deregulation. If the apartment is occupied, you are allowed to initiate an annual income certification process and deregulate the...

How to Handle Signing and Renewing Leases with Cotenants

April 24, 2015    

Cotenants are two or more tenants who rent the same apartment under the same lease. Sometimes cotenants sign at the same time or a cotenant may be added later to an existing lease. In New York City, due to the short supply and high demand for apartments, there’s a good chance that a...

Follow Five Rules to Prepare for Fair Housing Testers

March 20, 2015    

The recent appointment of Carmelyn Malalis as the new chair of the NYC Commission on Human Rights (CHR) has coincided with renewed legislative interest in the Commission’s fair housing testing program. Commissioner Malalis recently testified in front of the City Council regarding Intro....

Q & A on Painting Requirements for Rent-Regulated Apartments

February 20, 2015    

It’s difficult to keep track of the various painting requirements that apply to building owners. If you own a building with three or more apartments or own a one- or two-family building with a tenant-occupied apartment, you must comply with Sections 27-2013 and 27-2014 of the city’s...

What to Do if Tenant Won't Give You Duplicate Key

January 28, 2015    

Tenants can install and maintain their own locks on their apartment entrance doors in addition to the lock supplied by the owner. The lock may be no more than three inches in circumference, and tenants must provide owners with a duplicate key upon request. Any lease provision requiring a tenant...

How to Defend Against Fair Market Rent Appeals

December 18, 2014    

When a tenant passes away or moves out of your rent-controlled apartment without leaving behind any occupants who qualify as tenant-successors, the apartment becomes decontrolled or no longer subject to rent-control laws. If that apartment is in a building built before Jan. 1, 1974, containing...

How to Handle Tenant Who Alters Apartment Without Consent

November 21, 2014    

Tenants sometimes treat their apartments as if they own them, making alterations without your consent. For example, a tenant may remove the existing kitchen cabinets and install his own. This could cause big problems, especially if the tenant’s alterations aren’t done properly. If...

Use Revised DHCR Forms for Vacancy and Renewal Leases

November 12, 2014    

By Eileen O'Toole, Esq.

To implement the January 2014 amendments to the Rent Stabilization Code, the Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) has issued revised versions of its rent-stabilized Renewal Lease Form, as well as the New York City Lease Rider for Rent-...

Offer Tenant Who Illegally Sublets Option to Give Up Apartment

October 24, 2014    

If you’re like most owners who discover that an illegal subtenant is living in a rent-regulated apartment, your first reaction may be to contact your attorney and sue in housing court to evict the tenant. But this course of action doesn’t always make sense. Housing court cases based...