New York State
Division of Housing and Community Renewal
Office of Rent Administration
Gertz Plaza, 92-31 Union Hall St.
Jamaica, New York 11433
Public Information: (718)739-6400

Mario M. Cuomo, Governor
Donald M. Halperin, Commissioner
Joseph A. D'Agosta, Deputy Commissioner for Rent Administration

Emergency Tenant Protection Act
Tenant Protection Regulations



Section 48, now codified at 9 N.Y.C.R.R. Section 2503.8, of the
Tenant Protection Regulations

This Bulletin relates to the requirement under the Act and
Regulations concerning the collection of guideline increases on
vacancy whenever an applicable County Guidelines Board has
authorized the utilization of comparable apartment rentals for
determining rents on vacancy leases.

The Regulations require that an owner of a vacant housing
accommodation for lease shall make available to prospective
tenants a notice in writing of the monthly rent under the offered
lease and of the prior legal regulated rent, if any, which was
in effect immediately prior to the vacancy. The Notice must also
state that any increase under the offered lease does not exceed
the applicable rent adjustment pursuant to the guidelines filed
with the Division by the Rent Guidelines Board for the county
where the housing accommodation is located, or as otherwise
authorized by the Act.

The Regulations further require that a similar notice be added to
a tenant's vacancy lease. Where the amount of the rent of the
vacancy lease is based on the rent for a comparable apartment as
authorized by the County Guidelines Board, the Notice must set
forth the prior legal regulated rent, the amount of any rent
increase under the lease, the fact that a comparable apartment's
rent is being used to establish the vacancy lease rental, and the
designation of the comparable apartment, its rent, the number of
rooms and services provided. [Note that some Guidelines Board
Orders specify the date(s) on which comparable rent(s) must have
been charged so as to be eligible for use as the comparable

The above notices to prospective tenants and to vacancy tenants
may be combined into a single notice.

Failure to comply with the notice requirements pursuant to this
Operational Bulletin shall bar any rent increase until the owner
serves proper notice on the tenant.

When the owner provides the tenant with the required notice in
writing, the authorized monthly rent increase shall be
collectible prospectively commencing with the first rent payment
thereafter. Such notice shall be deemed to have been given when
served upon the tenant, or upon the Division in the course of a
proceeding to determine the lawful rent for the apartment in

Under the requirements of the Regulations and consistent with the
purposes and intent of the Emergency Tenant Protection Act, for
the owner to include a rent increase in the lease of the new
tenant based upon comparable vacancy guidelines, the comparable
apartment must contain the same number of rooms and should
include similar services, equipment and improvements as are
provided to the subject apartment, unless there are no other
apartments in the building or complex with the same number of
rooms, similar services, equipment and/or improvements.

Where there are no other apartments in the building or complex
with the same number of rooms, an apartment with a different
number of rooms may be used by the owner with an appropriate
adjustment to the comparable rent. Where the services, equipment
or improvements are not similar, the owner should explain any
adjustment in the comparable rent. For example, if an apartment
utilized as a "comparable" includes a garage rental and the
apartment for which the vacancy rent is being set does not
include the same garage services, then the comparable rent that
is used must reflect an adjustment commensurate with the garage
rental for the apartment. The owner must explain these
adjustments in the notice(s) to the prospective/vacancy tenant,
as described on page one of this Bulletin.

In determining these issues upon tenant challenge, the Division
shall look at all the evidence presented to it by the parties or
evidence that it develops, including the Registration Statements
required to be filed with the Division. If the owner utilizes an
apartment that the Division finds is not comparable, than the
Division may require the owner to submit additional comparable
apartments to justify the rent charged for the subject apartment.
If the DHCR finds that there is a different number of rooms the
agency will adjust the comparable rent. If there is a variation
in services, equipment or improvements in an apartment used by
the owner as a comparable apartment that substantially affects
the rental value of the apartment, the agency may adjust the rent
increase to reflect that variation.

If the applicable guidelines order permits, the owner may, as an
alternative to collecting a rent increase based on a comparable
rent, be allowed a one (1) or two (2) year guidelines increase
depending upon the term selected by the tenant, above the prior
regulated rent, plus other adjustments, if any.

If a tenant files a complaint with the Division concerning the
rent that can be charged upon a vacancy lease, and the owner
fails to respond to the Final Notice or fails to provide a
suitable comparable apartment after issuance of a Final Notice
permitting him to do so, and Final Order is issued determining
the tenant's complaint, then the owner shall be barred from ever
including that vacancy increase in the computation of the legal
regulated rent for that apartment.

Elliot G. Sander
Deputy Commissioner for Rent Administration

DHCR Operational Bulletins are issued by the New York State
Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) and update
agency administration of the rent laws.

Electronic versions of the documents on TenantNet
are for informational purposes only and there is no guarantee
they will be accepted by any court (or even DHCR) as true copies
of DHCR policy. The reader is advised to obtain true copies of
these documents from DHCR. Also see DHCR Policy Statements,
DHCR Advisory Opinions, the Rent Stabilization Code, the Rent
Stabilization Law and various Rent Control Statutes.

Every attempt has been made to conform to the original Operational
Bulletins as issued by DHCR; TenantNet makes no
representation the enclosed material is current or will be
applied as written.  The reader is advised that DHCR often fails
to properly apply, interpret or enforce housing laws.  Since
housing laws are complex and often contradictory, it is
recommended the reader obtain competent legal advice from a
tenant attorney or counseling from a tenant association or
community group. (rev. 3/13/96) DHCR documents
are public documents; the electronic version of such documents
have been developed by TenantNet and any added value, enhancements
and/or proprietary features are copyright 1994, 1995 and 1996 by
TenantNet. These documents may be freely distributed provided they
remain intact as herein presented, including this and the top
informational banner referencing TenantNet as the original provider.

For more information or assistance. call the DHCR Rent Infoline
at (718) 739-6400, or visit your Borough Rent Office.

Queens Central Office
92-31 Union Hall St. 4th Fl.
Jamaica, NY 11433
(718) 739-6400

One Fordham Plaza
Bronx, NY 10458
(718) 563-5678

250 Schermerhorn St.
3rd Floor
Brooklyn, NY 11201
(718) 780-9246

Lower Manhattan
156 William Street
9th Floor
NY, NY 10038
(212) 240-6011, 6012
South side of 110th St. and below

Upper Manhattan
163 W. 125th St.
5th Floor
NY, NY 10027
(212) 961-8930
North side of 110th St. and above

Staten Island
350 St. Mark's Place
Room 105
Staten island, NY 10301
(718) 816-0277

Nassau County District Rent Office
50 Clinton Street, 6th Floor
Hempstead, NY 11550
(516) 481-9494

Westchester County District Rent Office
55 Church Street, 3rd Floor
White Plains, NY 10601
(914) 948-4434

Rockland County District Rent Office
94-96 North Main St.
Spring Valley, NY 10977
(914) 425-6575

Albany Regional Office
119 Washington Avenue
Albany, NY 12210
(518) 432-0596

Buffalo Regional Office
Ellicot Square Building
295 Main St., Room 438
Buffalo, NY 14203
(716) 856-1382

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