BBG News

State Legislative Leaders Announce Agreement on Draconian Legislation

Jun 12, 2019

The State Senate and Assembly majority leaders announced agreement on a permanent extension of the Rent Stabilization and Rent Control Laws, coupled with a series of changes that will severely and negatively impact the ownership and management of regulated properties.

The Assembly has issued the “Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019,” with the Senate expected to follow suit. The bills must be voted on and signed by the Governor by June 15th.

Among the key provisions are the following:

  • Rent regulations extended permanently
  • High rent vacancy deregulation repealed
  • High rent / high income deregulation repealed
  • Preferential rents continue through the tenancy (may not be discontinued on renewal of lease)
  • Vacancy bonus repealed
  • Longevity bonus repealed
  • Restriction on Rent Guidelines Board promulgating a vacancy or longevity bonus
  • Owner occupancy restricted to one apartment, higher burden of proof, protection for 15 year rent stabilized tenants
  • Overcharge statute of limitation expanded from 4 to 6 years; return of overcharge will not avoid treble damages; treble damages extended from 2 to 6 years.
  • MCI cap reduced from 6 to 2 per cent, with longer amortization, increases come off after 30 years, more restrictive definition
  • IAI limited to 3 IAI’s over 15 year for an aggregate total of $15,000 in IAI, increases come off after 30 years
  • Conversion to coop/condo now requires 51 % of tenants in residence (rather than 15%)
  • Housing court procedure and timing is substantially altered, from rent demands to stays of eviction
  • Owners must mitigate damages when tenant terminates lease early.
  • New procedures and restrictions on security deposits
  • Rent deposit law effectively nullified
  • Free market apartments subjected to rules regarding renewals and rents
  • A tenant cannot be denied a lease predicated solely upon a prior or pending proceeding

These are only some of the key provisions. As we continue to analyze these bills we will keep you informed and updated. Should you have questions or require consultation, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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