George E. Pataki, Governor Joseph H. Holland, Commissioner
A publication of New York State
Division of Housing and Community Renewal
Office of Rent Administration
Fact Sheet #4 - Lease Renewal in Rent Stabilized Apartments
Tenants in rent stabilized apartments have the right to select a
lease renewal for a one or two year term. Due to a recent change in
legislation, tenants receiving a New York City Senior Citizen Rent
Increase Exemption (SCRIE) can choose a one or two year lease renewal.
The owner must give written notice of renewal by mail or personal
delivery not more than 150 days and not less than 120 days before the
existing lease expires. The offer to renew the lease for New York City
tenants must be on a Renewal Lease Form [DHCR form RTP-8]. For tenants
outside of New York City, the renewal notice must be sent by certified
mail not more than 120 days and not less than 90 days before the
existing lease expires. To obtain an approved form outside NYC, contact
your local Rent Office.
The owner may charge the tenant a Rent Guidelines Board authorized
increase based on the length of the renewal lease term selected by the
tenant. The law permits the owner to raise the rent during the lease
term if the Rent Guidelines rate was not finalized when the tenant
signed the lease renewal. A space appears on the Renewal Lease Form for
the owner to either enter the rent increase or check the box indicating
that the authorized increase is unknown at this time.
The renewal lease must keep the same terms and conditions as the
expiring lease unless a change is necessary to comply with a specific
law or regulation. Those lawful provisions and any other written
agreements between the owner and the tenant that would alter the
expiring lease should be attached to the Renewal Lease Form.
After the renewal offer is made, the tenant has 60 days to accept. If
the tenant does not accept within this 60 day period, the owner may
refuse to renew the lease and may also proceed in court to have the
When a tenant signs the Renewal Lease Form and returns it to the
owner, the owner must return the fully signed and dated copy to the
tenant within 30 days. A tenant does not sign a new lease since all
lease renewals must be on the Renewal Lease Form [DHCR form RTP-8].
If the owner does not return a copy of the fully executed Renewal
Lease Form to the tenant within 30 days of receiving the signed lease
from the tenant, the tenant may file the Tenant’s Complaint of Owner’s
Failure to Renew Lease and /or Failure to Furnish a Copy of a Signed
Lease [DHCR form RA-90].
An owner can refuse to renew a lease for many legitimate reasons.
The Rent Stabilization Code and Law defines these reasons in detail,
** The owner or a member of the owner’s
immediate family needs the apartment for
their personal use and primary residence.
If the tenant is a senior citizen, or disabled,
special rules apply [See Fact Sheets on
Special Rights of Senior Citizens and
Special Rights of Disabled Persons].
** The tenant refuses to sign the renewal
lease or Renewal Lease Form [DHCR
** The apartment is not used as the tenant’s
** The owner wants to take the apartment off
the rental market, either to demolish the
building for reconstruction or use it for other
purposes permitted by law.
** Three years have gone by since the building
was converted to a cooperative or
condominium, and the tenant did not purchase
the apartment under a legal Eviction Plan
proposed by the owner. If a tenant is an
eligible senior citizen or a disabled person,
other rules apply. For more information, write
the Office of the Attorney General, 120 Broadway,
23rd Floor, Real Estate Financing Bureau,
New York, N.Y. 10271.
When a tenant receives the Lease Renewal Form, a copy of the Rent
Stabilization Rights Rider For Apartment House Tenants Residing in New
York City must be attached. The Rider will explain how the proposed rent
was computed and describe the rights and obligations of tenants and
owners under the Rent Stabilization Law [See Fact Sheet on Rent
Stabilization Lease Rider]. A renewal lease should go into effect on
or after the date that it is signed and returned to the tenant. In
general, the lease and any rent increase should not begin retroactively.
If DHCR approves an application for a rent increase based on a major
capital improvement, the owner may charge the increase during the term
of an existing renewal lease only if the lease contains a clause
specifically authorizing the owner to do so. A satisfactory lease
clause would provide, "The rent established in this renewal lease may
be increased or decreased following an order of DHCR or the Rent
For more information or assistance, call the DHCR Rent InfoLine (718)
739-6400 or visit your Borough Rent Office.
92-31 Union Hall Street
Jamaica, NY 11433
250 Schermerhorn Street
Brooklyn, NY 11201
163 W. 125th Street
New York, NY 10027
North side of 110th St. and above
50 Clinton Street
Hempstead, NY 11550
55 Church Street
White Plains, NY 10601
156 William Street
New York, NY 10038
South side of 110th St. and below
1 Fordham Plaza
Bronx, NY 10458
60 Bay Street
Staten Island, NY 10301
94-96 North Main Street
Spring Valley, NY 10977