NYC’s stabilized apartments will see rent increases of 3.25% and 5%

Posted On Wed, June 22, 2022 By

Posted On Wed, June 22, 2022 By In Policy

Photo by Avi Werde on Unsplash

More than two million New Yorkers who live in rent-stabilized apartments could see their rent increase by the largest percentage in a decade. The Rent Guidelines Board on Tuesday voted to approve a 3.25 percent increase for one-year leases and 5 percent for two-year leases that start on or after October 1. For the roughly one million rent-stabilized apartments, the rent hikes are the highest seen in the city since 2013.

The recommended rent hike was expected. The board, which is made up of nine members who are appointed by the mayor and are meant to represent landlords and tenants, approved the increases in a preliminary vote in May, citing inflation and the increasing cost of operations, fuel, and maintenance.

According to a report released by the board earlier this year, operating costs in buildings increased by 4.2 percent, compared to last year’s projected increase of 0.8 percent. The largest deviation between actual and projected changes in costs was the cost of fuel, which was expected to rise 0.1 percent but actually rose 19.6 percent, as 6sqft previously reported.

Tenants and affordable housing advocates say the rent hikes will lead to displacement and make the city’s current eviction and homelessness crises worse.

“We are deeply disappointed that the #RentGuidelinesBoard increased rents for stabilized tenants 3.25-5% this year,” the Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development tweeted. “This will push many out of their homes and is inconsistent with the stated goals of the @NYCMayor housing plan.”

Many New Yorkers are already struggling to make rent. As 6sqft reported, a recent survey by the city revealed the overall median household income would have to double in order to cover the citywide median asking rent of $2,750/month. The report also found the vacancy rate for homes listed below $1,500/month was less than 1 percent, a 30-year low.

Plus, last month, the median rent in Manhattan hit the $4,000/month mark for the first time ever, with average rent hitting just under $5,000/month, according to appraiser Miller Samuel.

Under former Mayor Bill de Blasio, the board recommended rent freezes and only slight increases over eight years. Because of Covid, the board voted in June 2020 to freeze rent for one-year leases and for the first year of two-year leases. Last year, the board adopted a proposal that did not increase rents for six months followed by an increase of 1.5 percent for the next six months.

Earlier proposals adopted included a 1.5 percent increase on one-year leases and a 2.5 percent increase on two-year leases in 2019. Rent freezes were also issued in 2015 and 2016.

Mayor Eric Adams had said the initial proposals of between 2.7 and 4.5 percent rent hikes for one-year leases and 4.3 and 9 percent for two-year leases were “too high” and called for a “better balance.” Adams has also come out in support of supporting small landlords who are “at risk of bankruptcy” due to rising maintenance costs.

“While we raised our voices and were successful in pushing the increases lower, the determination made by the Rent Guidelines Board today will unfortunately be a burden to tenants at this difficult time — and that is disappointing,” Adams said in a statement. “At the same time, small landlords are at risk of bankruptcy because of years of no increases at all, putting building owners of modest means at risk while threatening the quality of life for tenants who deserve to live in well-maintained, modern buildings.”

The rent hikes are the largest since Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s administration in 2013 when stabilized units saw an increase of 4 percent on one-year leases and 7.75 percent on two-year leases.


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