CHAPTER 2
HOUSING MAINTENANCE CODE

[table of contents]

SUBCHAPTER 3
PHYSICAL AND OCCUPANCY STANDARDS FOR DWELLING UNITS

ARTICLE 4
Minimum Room Sizes and Occupancy Regulations

[Section] Section
[D26-33.01] 27-2074 Minimum Room Sizes
[D26-33.03] 27-2075 Maximum Permitted Occupancy
[D26-33.05] 27-2076 Prohibited Occupancies
[D26-33.07] 27-2077 Conversions to Rooming Units Prohibited
[D26-33.09] 27-2078 Rental of Rooms to Boarders
[D26-33.11] 27-2079 Single Room Occupancy
[D26-33.13] 27-2080 Maintenance of a Registry in Rooming House and Single Room Occupancy Buildings


Sec. [D26-33.01] 27-2074 Minimum room sizes

a. In all multiple dwellings erected after April eighteenth, nineteen hundred and twenty-nine, every living room shall have a minimum height of eight feet, except as required for cellars and basements in section 27-2082 or 27-2083 of article 5 of this subchapter. In a multiple dwelling erected after April 18, 1929 pursuant to plans filed and approved prior to December ninth, nineteen hundred and fifty-five, and classified and recorded in the department, at least one living room in an apartment shall have a minimum floor area of one hundred thirty -two square feet; if erected, constructed or altered pursuant to plans filed on or after December ninth, nineteen hundred and fifty-five one living room shall have a minimum floor area of one hundred fifty square feet. Every other living room of an apartment in a multiple dwelling erected after April eighteenth, nineteen hundred and twenty-nine shall contain 80 square feet and have at least minimum dimension of eight feet, except:

(1) A kitchen;

(2) A room complying with the light and ventilation requirements of subdivision a of section 27-2058 of article one of this subchapter, which has an opening of not less than sixty square feet into an immediately adjoining room, may have a minimum floor area of seventy square feet and a least horizontal dimension of seven feet.

(3) a dining space complying with the light and ventilation requirements of subdivision f of section 27-2058 of article one of this subchapter;

(4) one-half the number of bedrooms in an apartment containing three or more bedrooms may have at least minimum dimension of seven feet;

(5) a room in a Class B multiple dwelling may have a floor area of sixty square feet and a least minimum dimension of six feet;

(6) a room in a lodging house, other than an apartment occupied by the owner, janitor, superintendent or caretaker, shall comply with the provisions of section sixty-six of the multiple dwelling law and rules and regulations issued pursuant thereto by the department.

No living room, except dormitories in a lodging house, shall be subdivided or otherwise enclosed unless each such portion complies with the provisions of this section and those for light and ventilation required in section 27-2058 of article one of this subchapter.

b. In a converted dwelling, every living room shall have a minimum height of eight feet, except that a living room located on the top story shall have a minimum height of seven feet in any part located more than six feet from the front of such room, and a living room in the basement or cellar shall comply with the requirements of subdivision b of section 27-2084 of article 5 of this subchapter. Except as provided in subdivision (e) of this section, a living room in an apartment shall have at least minimum dimension of six feet, a minimum floor area of sixty square feet and a minimum of five hundred and fifty cubic feet of air; and a living room in a rooming unit shall have not less than five hundred and fifty cubic feet of air, unless it is:

(1) a kitchen;

(2) a non-complying room which has an opening of not less than thirty-two and one-half square feet into an immediately adjoining room.

c. In a new law tenement, every living room shall have a least horizontal dimension of seven feet, except that if a living room is either located in a dwelling erected prior to nineteen hundred twelve, or is a kitchen or a sleeping room for a maid in a fireproof tenement where a passenger elevator is operated, a least minimum dimension of only six feet is required. Except as provided in subdivision e, one living room shall have a minimum floor area of one hundred twenty square feet, and every other room shall contain seventy square feet if the minimum height of the room is nine feet, or eighty square feet if such room has a minimum height of eight feet. unless it is:

(1) a kitchen;

(2) a dining space complying with the light and ventilation requirements of section 27 2060 of article one of this subchapter. A dining space is not permitted in an apartment with less than three rooms. No living room shall be subdivided or otherwise enclosed unless each such portion complies with the provisions of this section and those for light and ventilation required in section 27-2058 of article eight of this subchapter for multiple dwellings erected after April, eighteenth, nineteen hundred twenty-nine.

d. In an old law tenement, every living room shall have a minimum floor area of sixty square feet, except as provided in subdivision e.

e. In a multiple dwelling erected prior to April eighteenth, nineteen hundred twenty-nine and altered pursuant to plans filed on or after December ninth, nineteen hundred fifty-five:

(1) at least one living room in an apartment and any room used for single room occupancy shall have a minimum floor area of 150 square feet.

(2) all other living rooms in an apartment, or in a rooming unit in a converted dwelling shall have a minimum floor area of 70 square feet, except that a room in a lodging house, other than a room in an apartment occupied by the owner, janitor, superintendent, or caretaker, shall comply with the provisions of section 66 of the multiple dwelling law and regulations issued pursuant thereto by the department.

f. As used in subdivision (a) and (e) of this section, an alteration shall mean the subdivision of any previously existing residential units; the combination of residential units with non-residential space within the multiple dwelling, any of which results in new dwelling units or rooming units; or the conversion without physical change to a rooming unit, whenever permitted under the provisions of section 27-2077 of this article.

g. Notwithstanding any of the provisions of this article, in every multiple dwelling the minimum acceptable floor area of rooms existing on December ninth, nineteen hundred fifty-five shall be the present lawful area, provided, however, that the rooms have not been altered since December ninth, nineteen hundred fifty-five.

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Sec. [D26-33.03] 27-2075 Maximum permitted occupancy

a. No dwelling unit shall be occupied by a greater number of persons than is permitted by this section.

(1) Every person occupying an apartment in a Class A or Class B multiple dwelling or in a tenant-occupied apartment in a one- or two-family dwelling shall have a liveable area of not less than 80 square feet. The maximum number of persons who may occupy any such apartment shall be determined by dividing the total liveable floor area of the apartment by 80 square feet. For every two persons who may lawfully occupy an apartment, one child under four may also reside therein, except that a child under four is permitted in an apartment lawfully occupied by one person. No residual floor area of less than 80 square feet shall be counted in determining the maximum permitted occupancy for such apartment. The floor area of a kitchen or kitchenette shall be included in measuring the total liveable floor area of an apartment but the floor area for private halls foyers, bathrooms or water closets shall be excluded.

(2) A living room in a rooming unit may be occupied by not more than two persons if it has a minimum floor area not less than one hundred ten square feet in a rooming house, or 130 square feet in a single room occupancy.

b. The maximum number of persons who may occupy a dormitory shall not exceed the occupancy permitted under section 66 of the multiple dwelling law, and the regulations issued thereunder by the department.

c. On written demand by the department, or by the owner when he or she rents a dwelling unit or any time thereafter, the tenant shall submit an affidavit setting forth the names and relationship of all occupants residing within the dwelling unit and the ages of any minors. In the event of an increase in the number of occupants, the tenant shall advise the owner and, if the owner so demands in writing, the tenant shall submit an affidavit, setting forth the pertinent information regarding such increase in occupancy.

d. In any case where the birth of a child or its attainment of the age of four causes the number of persons or children to exceed the maximum occupancy permitted in this section, such excess occupancy shall be permissible until one year after such event.

e. In every rooming unit, a sign shall be posted showing the maximum lawful occupancy. Such sign shall be made and installed in the manner and location prescribed by the department and shall be maintained at all times.

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Sec. [D26-33.05] 27-2076 Prohibited occupancies

a. No kitchen shall be occupied for sleeping purposes.

b. No rooming unit shall be occupied by a family with a child under the age of 16 years, except that if a child is born to a family residing in such accommodations. the unlawful occupancy shall not commence until one year after the birth of such child. In any case where such an unlawful occupancy continues for ten days after the service of a notice of violation upon both the tenant and owner the department may, in addition to all other remedies, institute a proceeding for an injunction pursuant to article 4 of subchapter 5 of this chapter to obtain an order requiring that such violation be remedied by eviction or removal of the tenant. The provisions of this subdivision shall not prohibit such occupancy (1) in rooming units operated without profit by an educational, religious or charitable institution of the type described and for the purposes set forth in subdivision (a) of section 27-2077 of this article, or (2) in a summer resort dwelling.

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Sec. [D26-33.07] 27-2077 Conversions to rooming units prohibited

a. No rooming unit which was not classified and recorded as such in the department prior to May fifteen, nineteen hundred fifty-four or converted to such use prior to April 30, 1956, shall be created in any dwelling, whether such conversion is effective with or without physical alterations, except for rooming units:

(1) owned or controlled and operated by a hospital for occupancy by nurses and interns on its staff; or,

(2) owned and operated without profit by an educational, religious or charitable institution as a residence for the aged, or for working girls or women, or for working boys or men, or for delinquent, dependent or neglected children, or for students attending a school or college: or,

(3) approved by the commissioner of the department and created with the substantial assistance of loans, grants or subsidies from any federal, state or local agency or instrumentality; or

(4) approved by the commissioner of the department and owned, operated or used by any federal, state or local agency or instrumentality or by a non-profit organization.

b. When the ownership, operation or use by an institution or public agency for any of the purposes enumerated in subdivision (a) ceases, the certificate of occupancy shall expire.

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Sec. [D26-33.09] 27-2078 Rental of rooms to borders

a. A family may rent one or more living rooms in an apartment to not more than two boarders, roomers or lodgers, if every living room in such apartment has free and unobstructed access to each required exit from such apartment as provided in paragraphs (a), (b) and (c) of subdivision four of section 248 or paragraph (a) of subdivision 1 of section 53 of the multiple dwelling law, and if each such boarder, roomer or lodger has access to, and the right to use, at least one water closet, bath or shower and one washbasin as may be required in or for an apartment in this code.

b. Where a tenant rents any part of an apartment in a multiple dwelling to more than two boarders, roomers or lodgers, such rental shall constitute a use of the apartment for single room occupancy and such rental in an apartment of a converted dwelling shall constitute an unlawful use as a rooming unit.

c. A family may rent one or more living rooms in a private dwelling to not more than two boarders. roomers or lodgers, except as otherwise prohibited under the zoning resolution of the city of New York.

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Sec. [D26-33.11] 27-2079 Single room occupancy

Every building containing rooming units, and each individual apartment used for single room occupancy, shall contain at least one water closet, washbasin and bath or shower for each six persons lawfully occupying rooming units therein, and for any remainder of less than six persons. At least one water closet shall be located on any floor containing a rooming unit. If there are not more than two rooms on the first story above the basement in a rooming house, no water closet is required on such floor but the occupants of the room shall be counted in determining the required number of facilities.

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Sec. [D26-33.13] 27-2080 Maintenance of a registry in rooming house and single room occupancy buildings

An owner or lessee of any dwelling containing rooming house accommodations or any room or rooms used for single room occupancy shall keep a register in such dwelling in the custody of a responsible agent. The register shall show: the name, signature, age, previous residence, date of arrival and date of departure of each tenant of rooming house accommodations or of a room or rooms used for single room occupancy; the room or rooms occupied by such tenant; and the names and ages of all persons residing in or occupying such room or rooms with such tenant. The owner or lessee of such a dwelling and the agent who maintains the register in such dwelling shall permit any officer or employee of the department or any inspector from any city department to inspect the register. It shall be unlawful for such owner or lessee knowingly to cause or permit any false entry to be made in such register. It shall be unlawful for any tenant to provide the owner or lessee of such dwelling with any false information on any matter required to be included in the register.

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