New York Rent Laws
RSL Table of Contents

NYC Rent Stabilization Law of 1969

The New York City RENT STABILIZATION LAW (RSL) is the fundamental statute establishing Rent Stabilization regulation in New York City, and through the Rent Stabilization Code, is administered by the New York State Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR). Established in 1969, the RSL is a modification and successor regulatory scheme to Rent Control. As Rent Control apartments become vacant, they normally become subject to Rent Stabilization. Also see: Rent Stabilization Code, DHCR Policy Statements, DHCR Operational Bulletins, DHCR Advisory Opinions, and various Rent Control Statutes. 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. Every attempt has been made to conform to the original document; 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. ------------------------------------------------------------ NOTE: THIS DOCUMENT DOES NOT INCLUDE AMENDMENTS TO THE RENT STABILIZATION LAW FROM 1993. These changes, among others, created the "High Rent/High Income" method of deregulation, formalized the 1/40 rent increase for individual apartment improvements and dismantled the rent registration system. The amendments will be archived here at a later time. ------------------------------------------------------------ NEW YORK CITY RENT STABILIZATION [N.Y.C. Admin. Code Sections 26-501 -- 26-520] RENT STABILIZATION LAW OF NINETEEN HUNDRED SIXTY-NINE ----------------------------- TABLE OF CONTENTS Section 26-501. Findings and declaration of emergency. 26-502. Additional findings and declaration of emergency. 26-503. Short title. 26-504. Application. 26-505. Application to multiple family complex. 26-506. Application to hotels. 26-507. Application to certain multiple dwellings purchased from the city. 26-509. Application to department of housing preservation and development for rent increase exemptions and equivalent tax abatement for rent regulated property occupied by certain senior citizens. 26-510. Rent guidelines board. 26-511. Real estate industry stabilization association. 26-512. Stabilization provisions. 26-513. Application for adjustment of initial rent. 26-514. Maintenance of services. 26-515. Recovery of possession. 26-516. Enforcement and procedures. 26-517. Rent registration. 26-517.1. Fees. 26-518. Hotel industry stabilization association. 26-519. Suspension of registration. 26-520. Expiration date. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-501. FINDINGS AND DECLARATION OF EMERGENCY. The council hereby finds that a serious public emergency continues to exist in the housing of a considerable number of persons within the city of New York and will continue to exist after April first, nineteen hundred seventy-four, that such emergency necessitated the intervention of federal, state and local government in order to prevent speculative, unwarranted and abnormal increases in rents; that there continues to exist an acute shortage of dwellings which creates a special hardship to persons and families occupying rental housing; that the legislation enacted in nineteen hundred seventy-one by the state of New York removing controls on housing accommodations as they become vacant, has resulted in sharp increases in rent levels in many instances; that the existing and proposed cuts in federal assistance to housing programs threaten a virtual end to the creation of new housing, thus prolonging the present emergency; that unless residential rents and evictions continue to be regulated and controlled disruptive practices and abnormal conditions will produce serious threats to the public health, safety and general welfare; that to prevent such perils to health safety and welfare, preventive action by the council continues to be imperative that such action is necessary in order to prevent exactions of unjust, unreasonable and oppressive rents and rental agreements and to forestall profiteering speculation and other disruptive practices tending to produce threats to the public health, safety and general welfare; that the transition from regulation to a normal market of free bargaining between landlord and tenant, while still the objective of state and city policy, must be administered with due regard for such emergency; and that the policy herein expressed is now administered locally within the city of New York by an agency of the city itself, pursuant to the authority conferred by chapter twenty-one of the laws of nineteen hundred sixty-two. The council further finds that, prior to the adoption of local laws sixteen and fifty-one of nineteen hundred sixty-nine, many owners of housing accommodations in multiple dwellings, not subject to the provisions of the city rent and rehabilitation law enacted pursuant to said enabling authority either because they were constructed after nineteen hundred forty-seven or because they were decontrolled due to monthly rental of two hundred fifty dollars or more or for other reasons, were demanding exorbitant and unconscionable rent increases as a result of the aforesaid emergency, which led to a continuing restriction of available housing as evidenced by the nineteen hundred sixty-eight vacancy survey by the united states bureau of the census; that prior to the enactment of said local laws, such increases were being exacted under stress of prevailing conditions of inflation and of an acute housing shortage resulting from a sharp decline in private residential construction brought about by a combination of local and national factors; that such increases and demands were causing severe hardship to tenants of such accommodations and were uprooting long-time city residents from their communities; that recent studies establish that the acute housing shortage continues to exist; that there has been a further decline in private residential construction due to existing and proposed cuts in federal assistance to housing programs, that unless such accommodations are subjected to reasonable rent and eviction limitations, disruptive practices and abnormal conditions will produce serious threats to the public health, safety and general welfare; and that such conditions constitute a grave emergency. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-502. ADDITIONAL FINDINGS AND DECLARATION OF EMERGENCY. The council hereby finds that a serious public emergency continues to exist in the housing of a considerable number of persons within the city of New York and will continue to exist after April first, nineteen hundred eighty-eight and hereby reaffirms and repromulgates the findings and declaration set forth in section 26-501 of this chapter. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-503. SHORT TITLE. This law may be cited as the rent stabilization law of nineteen hundred sixty-nine. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-504. APPLICATION. This law shall apply to: a. Class A multiple dwellings not owned as a cooperative or as a condominium, except as provided in section three hundred fifty-two-eeee of the general business law containing six or more dwelling units which: (1) were completed after February first, nineteen hundred forty-seven, except dwelling units (a) owned or leased by, or financed by loans from, a public agency or public benefit corporation, (b) subject to rent regulation under the private housing finance law or any other state law, (c) aided by government insurance under any provision of the national housing act, to the extent this chapter or any regulation or order issued thereunder is inconsistent therewith, or (d) located in a building for which a certificate of occupancy is obtained after March tenth, nineteen hundred sixty- nine; or (e) any class A multiple dwelling which on June first, nineteen hundred sixty-eight was and still is commonly regarded as a hotel, transient hotel or residential hotel, and which customarily provides hotel service such as maid service, furnishing and laundering of linen, telephone and bell boy service, secretarial or desk service and use and upkeep of furniture and fixtures, or (f) not occupied by the tenant, not including subtenants or occupants, as his primary residence, as determined by a court of competent jurisdiction, provided, however that no action or proceeding shall be commenced seeking to recover possession on the ground that a housing accommodation is not occupied by the tenant as his or her primary residence unless the owner or lessor shall have given thirty days notice to the tenant of his or her intention to commence such action or proceeding on such grounds. For the purposes of this subparagraph where a housing accommodation is rented to a not-for-profit hospital for residential use, affiliated subtenants authorized to use such accommodations by such hospital shall be deemed to be tenants, or (g) became vacant on or after June thirtieth, nineteen hundred seventy-one, or become vacant, provided however that this exemption shall not apply or become effective with respect to housing accommodations which the commissioner determines or finds became vacant because the landlord or any person acting on his or her behalf, with intent to cause the tenant to vacate, engaged in any course of conduct (including but not limited to, interruption or discontinuance of essential services) which interfered with or disturbed or was intended to interfere with or disturb the comfort repose, peace or quiet of the tenant in his or her use or occupancy of the housing accommodations and provided further that any housing accommodations exempted by this paragraph shall be subject to this law to the extent provided in subdivision b of this section; or (2) were decontrolled by the city rent agency pursuant to section 26-414 of this title; or (3) are exempt from control by virtue of item one, two, six or seven of subparagraph (i) of paragraph two of subdivision e of section 26-403 of this title; and b. Other housing accommodations in class A or class B multiple dwellings made subject to this law pursuant to the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four. c. Dwelling units in a building or structure receiving the benefits of section 11-243 or section 11-244 of the code or article eighteen of the private housing finance law, not owned as a cooperative or as a condominium, except as provided in section three hundred fifty-two-eeee of the general business law and not subject t chapter three of this title. Upon the expiration or termination for any reason of the benefits of section 11-243 or section 11-244 of the code or article eighteen of the private housing finance law any such dwelling unit shall be subject to this chapter until the occurrence of the first vacancy of such unit after such benefits are no longer being received or if each lease and renewal thereof for such unit for the tenant in residence at the time of the expiration of the tax benefit period has included a notice in at least twelve point type informing such tenant that the unit shall become subject to deregulation upon the expiration of such tax benefit period and states the approximate date on which such tax benefit period is scheduled to expire, such dwelling unit shall be deregulated as of the end of the tax benefit period; provided, however, that if such dwelling unit would have been subject to this chapter or the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four in the absence of this subdivision such dwelling unit shall, upon the expiration of such benefits, continue to be subject to this chapter or the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four to the same extent and in the same manner as if this subdivision had never applied thereto. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-505. APPLICATION TO MULTIPLE FAMILY COMPLEX. For purposes of this chapter a class A multiple dwelling shall be deemed to include a multiple family garden-type maisonette dwelling complex containing six or more dwelling units having common facilities such as sewer line, water main, and heating plant, and operated as a unit under a single ownership on May sixth, nineteen hundred sixty-nine, notwithstanding that certificates of occupancy were issued for portions thereof as one- or two-family dwellings. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-506. APPLICATION TO HOTELS. a. Notwithstanding the provisions of section 26-504 of this chapter to the contrary, and irrespective of any decontrol pursuant to subparagraph (c) of paragraph two of subdivision e of section 26-403 of the city rent and rehabilitation law this law shall apply to dwelling units in all hotels except hotels erected after July first nineteen hundred sixty-nine, whether classified as a class A or a class B multiple dwelling, containing six or more dwelling units, provided that the rent charged for the individual dwelling units on May thirty-first, nineteen hundred sixty-eight was not more than three hundred fifty dollars per month or eighty-eight dollars per week; and further provided that, notwithstanding the foregoing, this law shall apply to dwelling units in any hotel, whether classified as a class A or a class B multiple dwelling, eligible for benefits pursuant to the provisions of section 11-244 of the code. b. Upon application by a tenant or owner, the division of housing and community renewal, shall determine if such building is a hotel covered by this law, based upon the services provided and other relevant factors. If it is determined that such building is not a hotel, it shall thereafter be subject to this law pursuant to subdivision b of section 26-504 of this chapter. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-507. APPLICATION TO CERTAIN MULTIPLE DWELLINGS PURCHASED FROM THE CITY. a. Notwithstanding the provisions of any local law or regulation promulgated pursuant to the rent stabilization law of nineteen hundred sixty-nine or the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four, upon the sale in any manner authorized by law of a multiple dwelling which was previously subject to the provisions of any such laws or acts which was acquired by the city in a tax foreclosure proceeding or pursuant to article nineteen-A of the real property actions and proceedings law, all dwelling units within the multiple dwelling shall be subject to the rent stabilization law of nineteen hundred sixty-nine, as amended, at the last rent charged by the city, or on behalf of the city, for such dwelling unit. b. If a unit which was subject to this chapter at the time the city so acquired title is occupied by a tenant who was in occupancy at the time of acquisition and remains in occupancy at the time of sale, such tenant shall be offered a one or two year lease at the rent provided in this section as soon as practical at the sale of the multiple dwelling. c. This section shall not apply to redemptions from city ownership pursuant to chapter four of title eleven of the code. [Section 26-508 has not been enacted.] ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-509. APPLICATION TO DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING PRESERVATION AND DEVELOPMENT FOR RENT INCREASE EXEMPTIONS AND EQUIVALENT TAX ABATEMENT FOR RENT REGULATED PROPERTY OCCUPIED BY CERTAIN SENIOR CITIZENS. a. Commencement of department of housing preservation and development (1) Notwithstanding any provisions of this chapter to the contrary, on and after October first, nineteen hundred eighty, the department of housing preservation and development shall grant rent increase exemption orders or tax abatement certificates pursuant to this section and applications for such orders and certificates and renewal applications shall be made to the department of housing (2) the department of housing preservation and development shall have the power, in relation to any application for a rent increase exemption order or tax abatement certificate, to determine the lawful stabilization rent, but it shall not receive applications for adjustment of the initial legal regulated rent pursuant (3) The department of finance, and the department of housing preservation and development may promulgate such rules and regulations as may be necessary to effectively carry out the provisions of this section. b. Rent increase exemptions for certain senior citizens (1) No increase in the legal regulated rent shall be collectible from a tenant to whom there has been issued a currently valid rent exemption order pursuant to this subdivision, except as provided in such order, if such increase is a lawful increase in the monthly legal regulated rent over the rent legally payable on the eligibility date which is provided under a two year lease, or under such other term as regards dwelling units subject to the hotel stabilization provisions of this chapter, for an increase in rent: (i) pursuant to an order of the New York city rent guidelines board, or (ii) based upon an owner hardship rent increase order issued by the state division of housing and community renewal. (2) A tenant is eligible for a rent exemption order pursuant to this section if: (i) the head of the household residing in the housing accommodation is sixty-two years of age or older and is entitled to the possession or to the use or occupancy of a dwelling unit. Nothing herein contained shall render ineligible for benefits persons receiving supplemental security income or additional statement payments, or both, under a program administered by the United States department of health and human services or by such department and the New York state department of social (ii) the aggregate disposable income (as defined by regulation of the department of housing preservation and development) of all members of the household residing in the housing accommodation does not exceed fifteen thousand dollars per year, after deduction of federal, state and city income and social security taxes. For purposes of this subdivision, "aggregate disposable income" shall not include increases in benefits accorded pursuant to the social security act which take effect after the eligibility date of a head of the household receiving benefits under this section whether received by the head of the household or any other member of the household. (iii) (a) in the case of a head of the household who does not receive a monthly allowance for shelter pursuant to the social services law, the maximum rent for the housing accommodation exceeds one-third of the aggregate disposable income or subject to the limitations contained within item (c) of subparagraph (i) of paragraph three of this subdivision, if any expected lawful increase in the maximum rent would cause such maximum rent to exceed one-third of the aggregate disposable income; or (b)in the case of a head of the household who receives a monthly allowance for shelter pursuant to the social services law, the maximum rent for the housing accommodation exceeds the maximum allowance for shelter which the head of the household is entitled to receive pursuant to the social services law, or subject to the limitations contained within item (c) of subparagraph (i) of paragraph three of this subdivision, if any expected lawful increase in the maximum rent would cause such maximum rent to exceed the maximum allowance for shelter which the head of the household is entitled to receive. (3) (i) A rent exemption order pursuant to this subdivision shall provide: (a)in the case of a head of the household who does not receive a monthly allowance for shelter pursuant to the social services law, that the landlord may not collect from the tenant to whom it is issued rent at a rate in excess of either one-third of the aggregate disposable income, or the rent in effect immediately preceding the eligibility date, whichever is greater; or (b)in the case of a head of the household who receives a monthly allowance for shelter pursuant to the social services law, that the landlord may not collect from the tenant to whom it is issued rent a rate in excess of either the maximum allowance for shelter which the head of the household is entitled to receive, or the rent in effect immediately preceding the eligibility date, whichever is greater; and (c)that the landlord may collect from the tenant increases in rent based on an electrical inclusion adjustment or an increase in dwelling space, services or equipment. (ii) Each such order shall expire upon termination of occupancy of the housing accommodation by the tenant to whom it is issued. The landlord shall notify the department of housing preservation and development, on a form to be prescribed by such department, within thirty days of each such termination of occupancy. (4) Any landlord who collects, or seeks to collect or enforce, rent from a tenant in violation of the terms of a rent exemption order shall, for the purposes of all remedies, sanctions and penalties provided in this chapter, be deemed to have collected or attempted to collect or enforce, a rent in excess of the legal regulated rent. (5) A rent exemption order shall be issued to each tenant who applies to the department of housing preservation and development in accordance with its regulations and who is found to be eligible under this subdivision. Such order shall take effect on the first day of the first month after receipt of such application by the department of housing preservation and development, except that where any other increase in the legal regulated rent within ninety days of the issuance of the order increasing the tenant's maximum rent which a tenant is not exempted from paying the rent exemption order shall without further order of the department of housing preservation and development take effect as of the effective date of said order increasing the tenant's rent including any retroactive increments collectible pursuant to such order. (6) A rent exemption order shall be valid for the period of the lease or renewal thereof upon application by the tenant; provided, that upon any such renewal application being made by the tenant, any rent exemption order then in effect with respect to such tenant shall be deemed renewed until such time as the department of housing preservation and development shall have found such tenant to be either eligible or ineligible for a rent exemption order but in no event for more than six additional months. If such tenant is found eligible, the order shall be deemed to have taken effect upon expiration of the exemption In the event that any such tenant shall, subsequent to any such automatic renewal, not be granted a rent exemption order, such tenant shall be liable to the owner for the difference between the amounts the tenant has paid under the provisions of the automatically renewed order and the amounts which the tenant would have been required to pay in the absence of such order. Any rent exemption order issued pursuant to this subdivision shall include provisions giving notice as to the contents of this paragraph relating to automatic renewal of rent exemption orders and shall include provisions giving notice that the tenant must enter into either a one or two year renewal lease in order to be eligible for a rent exemption. The notice that each tenant receives from the owner relating to the right to a renewal lease shall contain similar information Any application or renewal application for a rent exemption order shall also constitute an application for a tax abatement under such section. The department of housing preservation and development may, with respect to renewal applications by the tenants whom it has found eligible for rent exemption orders prescribe a simplified form including a certification of the applicant's continued eligibility in lieu of a detailed statement of income and other qualifications. (7) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, when a head of a household to whom a then current, valid rent exemption order has been issued under this chapter, chapter three or chapter seven of this title moves his or her principal residence to a subsequent dwelling unit subject to regulation under this chapter, the head of the household may apply to the department of housing preservation and development for a rent exemption order relating to the subsequent dwelling unit, and such order may provide that the head of the household shall be exempt from paying that portion of the legal regulated rent for the subsequent dwelling (i) the amount by which the rent for the subsequent dwelling unit exceeds the last rent, as reduced, which the head of the household was required to actually pay in the original dwelling unit; (ii) the last amount deducted from the maximum rent or legal regulated rent meaning the most recent monthly deduction for the applicant in the original dwelling unit pursuant to this section or section 26-605 of this title; or (iii) where the head of the household does not receive a monthly allowance for shelter pursuant to the social services law, the amount by which the legal regulated rent of the subsequent dwelling unit exceeds one-third of the combined income of all members of the household. Such certificate shall be effective as of the first day of the month in which the tenant applied for such exemption or as of the date the tenant took occupancy of the subsequent dwelling unit, whichever is later provided both occur after the effective date of this section. (8) (i) When a dwelling unit subject to regulation under this chapter is later reclassified to a dwelling unit subject to regulation under chapter three of this title, the eligibility of a head of the household to receive a rent increase exemption order upon such reclassification shall be governed by paragraph eight of subdivision m of section 26-405 of this title. (ii) When a dwelling unit subject to regulation under this chapter is later reclassified to a dwelling unit subject to the provisions of article II, IV, V or XI of the private housing finance law or subject to a mortgage insured or initially insured by the federal government pursuant to section two hundred thirteen of the national housing act, as amended, the eligibility of a head of the household to receive a rent increase exemption order upon such reclassification shall be governed by section 26-605.1 of this title. (9) notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, where a head of household holds a current, valid rent exemption order and, after the effective date of this paragraph, there is a permanent decrease in aggregate disposable income in an amount which exceeds twenty percent of such aggregate disposable income as represented in such head of the household's last approved application for a rent exemption order or for renewal thereof, such head of the household may, upon renewal or one year after the issuance or renewal of such rent exemption order, apply for a redetermination of the amount set forth therein. Upon application, such amount shall be redetermined so as to re-establish the ratio of adjusted rent to aggregate disposable income which existed at the time of approval of such head of the household's last application for a rent exemption order or for renewal thereof; provided, however, that in no event shall the amount of adjusted rent be redetermined to be (i) in the case of a head of the household who does not receive a monthly allowance for shelter pursuant to the social services law, less than one-third of the aggregate disposable income; or (ii) in the case of a head of the household who receives a monthly allowance for shelter pursuant to such law, less than the maximum allowance for shelter which such head of the household is entitled to receive pursuant to the social services law. For purposes of this paragraph, a decrease in aggregate disposable income shall not include any decrease in such income resulting from the manner in which such income is calculated pursuant to any amendment to paragraph c of subdivision one of section four hundred sixty-seven-b of the real property tax law or any amendment to the regulations of the department of housing preservation and development made on or after April first, nineteen hundred eighty-seven. For purposes of this paragraph, "adjusted rent" shall mean legal regulated rent less the amount set forth in a rent exemption order. c. Tax abatement for properties subject to rent exemption order. (1) Tax abatement, pursuant to the provisions of section four hundred sixty-seven-b of the real property tax law, shall be granted with respect to any real property for which a rent exemption order is issued under subdivision b of this section to the tenant of any housing accommodation contained therein. The rent exemption order shall also constitute the tax abatement certificate. (2) The real estate tax imposed upon any real property for which a rent exemption is issued, shall be reduced and abated by an amount equal to the difference between: (i) the sum of the maximum rents collectible under such orders, and (ii) the sum of rents that would be collectible from the tenants of such housing accommodations if no exemption had been granted pursuant to subdivision b of this section. (3) For any individual housing accommodation, the tax abatement computed pursuant to this subdivision shall be available with respect to a period commencing on the effective date of the initial rent exemption order, and ending on the expiration date of such order or on the effective date of an order terminating the rent exemption. (4) Prior to the commencement of each fiscal year, the department of housing preservation and development shall notify the department of finance of the total amount of taxes to be abated under this section with respect to each property for which rent exemption orders were in effect for all or any part of the preceding calendar year. The commissioner of finance shall make the appropriate adjustment in the real estate tax payable in such fiscal year (5) Tax abatement pursuant to this section shall be in addition to any other tax abatement authorized by law, but shall not reduce the tax for any fiscal year below zero. In the event that the tax abatement certificate authorizes an amount of deduction in excess of the real estate installment, then the balance may be applied to any subsequent installment until exhausted. In such a case the owner shall submit with his or her real estate tax bill and remittance, a verified statement in such form as prescribed by the commissioner of finance setting forth the carry over amount and the amounts previously applied provided however, that at the request of the owner such balance shall be paid to the owner by the commissioner of finance in lieu of being applied to any subsequent installment, except where the owner is in arrears in the payment of real estate taxes on any property. For the purposes of this paragraph, where the owner is a corporation, it shall be deemed to be in arrears when any of the officers directors or any person holding an interest in more than ten percent of the issued and outstanding stock of such corporation is in arrears in the payment of real estate taxes on any property; where title is held by a nominee, the owner shall be deemed to be in arrears when the person for whose benefit such title is held is in arrears in the payment of real estate taxes on any property. d. Notwithstanding the provisions of this chapter, a tenant who resides in a dwelling unit which becomes subject to this chapter upon the sale by the city of New York of the building in which such dwelling unit is situated may be issued a rent increase exemption order for increases in rent which occurred during ownership of such building by the city of New York provided that such tenant would have been otherwise eligible to receive a rent increase exemption order at the time of such increase but for the fact that such tenant occupied a dwelling unit owned by the city of New York and was therefore not subject to this chapter. Application for such rent increase exemption orders shall be made within one year from the date such building is sold by the city of New York within one Year of the effective date of this provision, whichever is later. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-510. RENT GUIDELINES BOARD. a. There shall be a rent guidelines board to consist of nine members, appointed by the mayor. Two members shall be representative of tenants, two shall be representative of owners of property, and five shall be public members each of whom shall have had at least five years experience in either finance, economics or housing. One public member shall be designated by the mayor to serve as chairman and shall hold no other public office. No member, officer or employee of any municipal rent regulation agency or the state division of housing and community renewal and no person who owns or manages real estate covered by this law or who is an officer of any owner or tenant organization shall serve on a rent guidelines board. One public member, one member representative of tenants and one member representative of owners shall serve for a term ending two years from January first next succeeding the date of their appointment; one public member, one member representative of tenants and one member representative of owners shall serve for terms ending three years from the January first next succeeding the date of their appointment and two public members shall serve for terms ending four years from January first next succeeding the dates of their appointment. The chairman shall serve at the pleasure of the mayor. Thereafter, all members shall continue in office until their successors have been appointed and qualified. The mayor shall fill any vacancy which may occur by reason of death, resignation or otherwise in a manner consistent with the original appointment. A member may be removed by the mayor for cause, but not without an opportunity to be heard in person or by counsel, in his or her defense, upon not less than ten days notice. b. The rent guidelines board shall establish annually guidelines for rent adjustments, and in determining whether rents for housing accommodations subject to the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four or this law shall be adjusted shall consider, among other things (1) the economic condition of the residential real estate industry in the affected area including such factors as the prevailing and projected (i) real estate taxes and sewer and water rates, (ii) gross operating maintenance costs (including insurance rates governmental fees, cost of fuel and labor costs), (iii) costs and availability of financing (including effective rates of interest), (iv) over-all supply of housing accommodations and over-all vacancy rates, (2) relevant data from the current and projected cost of living indices for the affected area, (3) such other data as may be made available to it. Not later than July first of each year, the rent guidelines board shall file with the city clerk its findings for the preceding calendar year, and shall accompany such findings with a statement of the maximum rate or rates of rent adjustment, if any, for one or more classes of accommodations subject to this law, authorized for leases or other rental agreements commencing on the next succeeding October first or within the twelve months thereafter. Such findings and statement shall be published in the City record. c. Such members shall be compensated on a per diem basis of one hundred dollars per day for no more than twenty-five days a year except that the chairman shall be compensated at one hundred twenty-five dollars a day for no more than fifty days a year. The chairman shall be chief administrative officer of the rent guidelines board and among his or her powers and duties he or she shall have the authority to employ, assign and supervise the employees of the rent guidelines board and enter into contracts for consultant services. The department of housing preservation and development shall cooperate with the rent guidelines board and may assign personnel and perform such services in connection with the duties of the rent guidelines board as may reasonably be required by the chairman. d. Any housing accommodation covered by this law owned by a member in good standing of an association registered with the department of housing preservation and development pursuant to section 26-511 of this chapter which becomes vacant for any reason, other than harassment of the prior tenant, may be offered for rental at any price notwithstanding any guideline level established by the guidelines board for renewal leases, provided the offering price does not exceed the rental then authorized by the guidelines board for such dwelling unit plus five percent for a new lease not exceeding two years and a further five percent for a new lease having a minimum term of three years, until July first nineteen hundred seventy, at which time the guidelines board shall determine what the rental for a vacancy shall be. e. With respect to hotel dwelling units, covered by this law pursuant to section 26-506 of this chapter, the council, after receipt of a study from the rent guidelines board, shall establish a guideline for rent increases, irrespective of the limitations on amount of increase in subdivision d hereof, which guideline shall apply only to permanent tenants. A permanent tenant is an individual or family who at any time since May thirty-first, nineteen hundred sixty- eight, or hereafter, has continuously resided in the same hotel as a principal residence for a period of at least six months. On January first, nineteen hundred seventy-one and once annually each succeeding year the rent guidelines board shall cause a review to be made of the levels of fair rent increases provided under this subdivision and may establish different levels of fair rent increases for hotel dwelling units renting within different rental ranges based upon the board's consideration of conditions in the market for hotel accommodations and the economics of hotel real estate. Any hotel dwelling unit which is voluntarily vacated by the tenant thereof may be offered for rental at the guideline eve for vacancies established by the rent guidelines board. If a hotel dwelling unit becomes vacant because the prior tenant was evicted therefrom, there shall be no increase in the rental thereof except for such increases in rental that the prior tenant would have had to pay had he or she continued in occupancy. g.* From September twenty-fifth, nineteen hundred sixty-nine until the rate of permissible increase is established by the council pursuant to subdivision e of this section, there shall not be collected from any permanent hotel tenant any rent increase in excess of ten percent over the rent payable for his or her dwelling unit on May thirty-first, nineteen hundred sixty-eight, except for hardship increases authorized by the conciliation and appeals board. Any owner who collects or permits any rent to be collected in excess of the amount authorized by this subdivision shall not be eligible to be a member in good standing of a hotel industry stabilization association. * So in original. No paragraph (f) was enacted. h. The rent guidelines board prior to the annual adjustment of the level of fair rents provided for under subdivision b of this section for dwelling units and hotel dwelling units covered by this law, shall hold a public hearing or hearings for the purpose of collecting information relating to all factors set forth in subdivision b of this section. Notice of the date, time, location and summary of subject matter for the public hearing or hearings shall be published in the city record daily for a period of not less than eight days and at least once in one or more newspapers of general circulation at least eight days immediately preceding each hearing date, at the expense of the city of New York, and the hearing shall be open for testimony from any individual, group, association or representative thereof who wants to testify. i. Maximum rates of rent adjustment shall not be established more than once annually for any housing accommodation within the board's jurisdiction. Once established, no such rate shall, within the one-year period, be adjusted by any surcharge, supplementary adjustment or other modification. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-511. REAL ESTATE INDUSTRY STABILIZATION ASSOCIATION. a. The real estate industry stabilization association registered with the department of housing preservation and development is hereby divested of all its powers and authority under this law. b. The stabilization code heretofore promulgated by such association, as approved by the department of housing preservation and development, is hereby continued to the extent that it is not inconsistent with law. Such code may be amended from time to time, provided, however, that no such amendments shall be promulgated except by action of the commissioner of the division of housing and community renewal and provided further, that prior to the adoption of any such amendments, the commissioner shall (i) submit the proposed amendments to the commissioner of the department of housing preservation and development and allow such commissioner thirty days to make comments or recommendations on the proposed amendments, (ii) review the comments or recommendations, if any, made pursuant to clause (i) of this subdivision and make any revisions to the proposed amendments which the commissioner of the division of housing and community renewal deems appropriate provided that any such review and revision shall be completed within thirty days of receipt of such comments or recommendations and (iii) thereafter hold a public hearing on the proposed amendments. No provision of such code shall impair or diminish any right or remedy granted to any party by this law or any other provision of law. c. A code shall not be adopted hereunder unless it appears to the division of housing and community renewal that such code (1) provides safeguards against unreasonably high rent increases and, in general, protects tenants and the public interest, and does not impose any industry wide schedule of rents or minimum rentals; (2) requires owners not to exceed the level of lawful rents as provided by this law; (3) provides for a cash refund or a credit, to be applied against future rent, in the amount of any rent overcharge collected by an owner and any penalties costs, attorneys' fees and interest from the date of the overcharge at the rate of interest payable on a judgment pursuant to section five thousand four of the civil practice law and rules for which the owner is assessed; (4) includes provisions requiring owners to grant a one or two year vacancy or renewal lease at the option of the tenant except where a mortgage or mortgage commitment existing as of April first, nineteen hundred sixty- nine, provides that the mortgagor shall not grant a one year lease; (5) includes guidelines with respect to such additional rent and related matters as, for example, security deposits, advance rental payments, the use of escalator clauses in leases and provision for increase in rentals for garages and other ancillary facilities, so as to insure that the level of fair rent increase established under this law will not be subverted and made ineffective; (6) provides criteria whereby the commissioner may act upon applications by owners for increases in excess of the level of fair rent increase established under this law provided, however, that such criteria shall provide (a) as to hardship applications, for a finding that the level of fair rent increase is not sufficient to enable the owner to maintain approximately the same average annual net income (which shall be computed without regard to debt service, financing costs or management fees) for the three year period ending on or within six months of the date of an application pursuant to such criteria as compared with annual net income, which prevailed on the average over the period nineteen hundred sixty-eight through nineteen hundred seventy, or for the first three years of operation if the building was completed since nineteen hundred sixty- eight or for the first three fiscal years after a transfer of title to a new owner provided the new owner can establish to the satisfaction of the commissioner that he or she acquired title to the building as a result of a bona fide sale of the entire building and that the new owner is unable to obtain requisite records for the fiscal years nineteen hundred sixty- eight through nineteen hundred seventy despite diligent efforts to obtain same from predecessors in title and further provided that the new owner can provide financial data covering a minimum of six years under his or her continuous and uninterrupted operation of the building to meet the three year to three year comparative test periods herein provided; and (b) as to completed building-wide major capital improvements, for a finding that such improvements are deemed depreciable under the Internal Revenue Code and that the cost is to be amortized over a seven-year period, based upon cash purchase price exclusive of interest or service charges. Notwithstanding anything to the contrary contained herein, no increase granted pursuant to this paragraph shall, when added to the annual gross rents, as determined by the commissioner, exceed the sum of, (i) the annual operating expenses, (ii) an allowance for management services as determined by the commissioner, (iii) actual annual mortgage debt service (interest and amortization) on its indebtedness to a lending institution, an insurance company, a retirement fund or welfare fund which is operated under the supervision of the banking or insurance laws of the state of New York or the united states, and (iv) eight and one-half percent of that portion of the fair market value of the property which exceeds the unpaid principal amount of the mortgage indebtedness referred to in subparagraph (iii) of this paragraph. Fair market value for the purposes of this paragraph shall be six times the annual gross rent. The collection of any increase in the stabilized rent for any apartment pursuant to this paragraph shall not exceed six percent in any year from the effective date of the order granting the increase over the rent set forth in the schedule of gross rents, with collectibility of any dollar excess above said sum to be spread forward in similar increments and added to the stabilized rent as established or set in future years; (6a) provides criteria whereby as an alternative to the hardship application provided under paragraph six of this subdivision owners of buildings acquired by the same owner or a related entity owned by the same principals three years prior to the date of application may apply to the division for increases in excess of the level of applicable guideline increases established under this law based on a finding by the commissioner that such guideline increases are not sufficient to enable the owner to maintain an annual gross rent income for such building which exceeds the annual operating expenses of such building by a sum equal to at least five percent of such gross rent. For the purposes of this paragraph, operating expenses shall consist of the actual, reasonable, costs of fuel, labor, utilities, taxes, other than income or corporate franchise taxes, fees, permits, necessary contracted services and noncapital repairs, insurance, parts and supplies, management fees and other administrative costs and mortgage interest. For the purposes of this paragraph, mortgage interest shall be deemed to mean interest on a bona fide mortgage including an allocable portion of charges related thereto. Criteria to be considered in determining a bona fide mortgage other than an institutional mortgage shall include; condition of the property, location of the property, the existing mortgage market at the time the mortgage is placed, the term of the mortgage, the amortization rate, the principal amount of the mortgage, security and other terms and conditions of the mortgage. The commissioner shall set a rental value for any unit occupied by the owner or a person related to the owner or unoccupied at the owner's choice for more than one month at the last regulated rent plus the minimum number of guidelines increases or, if no such regulated rent existed or is known, the commissioner shall impute a rent consistent with other rents in the building. The amount of hardship increase shall be such as may be required to maintain the annual gross rent income as provided by this paragraph. The division shall not grant a hardship application under this paragraph or paragraph six of this subdivision for a period of three years subsequent to granting a hardship application under the provisions of this paragraph. The collection of any increase in the rent for any housing accommodation pursuant to this paragraph shall not exceed six percent in any year from the effective date of the order granting the increase over the rent set forth in the schedule of gross rents, with collectibility of any dollar excess above said sum to be spread forward in similar increments and added to the rent as established or set in future years. No application shall be approved unless the owner's equity in such building exceeds five percent of (i) the arms length purchase price of the property; (ii) the cost of any capital improvements for which the owner has not collected a surcharge- (iii) any repayment of principal of any mortgage or loan used to finance the purchase of the property or any capital improvements for which the owner has -not collected a surcharge and (iv) any increase in the equalized assessed value of the property which occurred subsequent to the first valuation of the property after purchase by the owner. For the purposes of this paragraph, owner's equity shall mean the sum of (i) the purchase price of the property less the principal of any mortgage or loan used to finance the purchase of the property, (ii) the cost of any capital improvement for which the owner has not collected a surcharge less the principal of any mortgage or loan used to finance said improvement, (iii) any repayment of the principal of any mortgage or loan used to finance the purchase of the property or any capital improvement for which the owner has not collected a surcharge, and (iv) any increase in the equalized assessed value of the property which occurred subsequent to the first valuation of the property after purchase by the owner. (7) establishes a fair and consistent formula for allocation of rental adjustment to be made upon granting of an increase by the commissioner; (8) requires owners to maintain all services furnished by them on May thirty-first, nineteen hundred sixty-eight, or as otherwise provided by law, in connection with the leasing of the dwelling units covered by this law; (9) provides that an owner shall not refuse to renew a lease except: (a) where he or she intends in good faith to demolish the building and has obtained a permit therefor from the department of buildings, or (b) where he or she seeks to recover possession of one or more dwelling units for his or her own personal use and occupancy as his or her primary residence in the city of New York and/or for the use and occupancy of a member of his or her immediate family as his or her primary residence in the city of New York provided however, that this subparagraph shall not apply where a tenant or the spouse of a tenant lawfully occupying the dwelling unit is sixty-two years of age or older, or has an impairment which results from anatomical, physiological or psychological conditions, other than addiction to alcohol, gambling, or any controlled substance, which are demonstrable by medically acceptable clinical and laboratory diagnostic techniques, and which are expected to be permanent and which prevent the tenant from engaging in any substantial gainful employment, unless such owner offers to provide and if requested, provides an equivalent or superior housing accommodation at the same or lower stabilized rent in a closely proximate area. The provisions of this subparagraph shall only permit one of the individual owners of any building to recover possession of one or more dwelling units for his or her own personal use and/or for that of his or her immediate family. Any dwelling unit recovered by an owner pursuant to this subparagraph shall not for a period of three years be rented, leased, subleased or assigned to any person other than a person for whose benefit recovery of the dwelling unit is permitted pursuant to this subparagraph or to the tenant in occupancy at the time of recovery under the same terms as the original lease. This subparagraph shall not be deemed to establish or eliminate any claim that the former tenant of the dwelling unit may otherwise have against the owner. Any such rental, lease, sublease or assignment during such period to any other person may be subject to a penalty of a forfeiture of the right to any increases in residential rents in such building for a period of three years; or (c) where the housing accommodation is owned by a hospital, convent, monastery, asylum, public institution, college, school dormitory or any institution operated exclusively for charitable or educational purposes on a nonprofit basis and either: (i) the tenant's initial tenancy commenced after the owner acquired the property and the owner requires the unit in connection with its charitable or educational purposes including, but not limited to, housing for affiliated persons; provided that with respect to any tenant whose right to occupancy commenced prior to July first, nineteen hundred seventy-eight pursuant to a written lease or written rental agreement and who did not receive notice at the time of the execution of the lease that his or her tenancy was subject to nonrenewal, the institution shall not have the right to refuse to renew pursuant to this subparagraph provided further that a tenant who was affiliated with the institution at the commencement of his or her tenancy and whose affiliation terminates during such tenancy shall not have the right to a renewal lease; or (ii) the owner requires the unit for a nonresidential use in connection with its charitable or educational purposes; or (d) on specified grounds set forth in the code consistent with the purposes of this law; or (e) where a tenant violates the provisions of paragraph twelve of this subdivision. (9a) provides that where an owner has submitted to and the attorney general has accepted for filing an offering plan to convert the building to cooperative or condominium ownership and the owner has presented the offering plan to the tenants in occupancy, any renewal or vacancy lease may contain a provision that if a building is converted to cooperative or condominium ownership pursuant to an eviction plan, as provided in section three hundred fifty-two-eeee of the general business law, the lease may only be canceled upon the expiration of three years after the plan has been declared effective, and upon ninety days notice to the tenant that such period has expired or will be expiring. (10) specifically provides that if an owner fails to comply with any order of the commissioner or is found by the commissioner to have harassed a tenant to obtain vacancy of his or her housing accommodation, he or she shall, in addition to being subject to any other penalties or remedies permitted by law, be barred thereafter from applying for or collecting any further rent increase. The compliance by the owner with the order of the commissioner or the restoration of the tenant subject to harassment to the housing accommodation or compliance with such other remedy as shall be determined by the commissioner to be appropriate shall result in the prospective elimination of such sanctions; (11) includes provisions which may be peculiarly applicable to hotels including specifically that no owner shall refuse to extend or renew a tenancy for the purpose of preventing a hotel tenant from becoming a permanent tenant- and (12) permits subletting of units subject to this law pursuant to section two hundred twenty-six-b of the real property law provided that (a) the rental charged to the subtenant does not exceed the stabilized rent plus a ten percent surcharge payable to the tenant if the unit sublet was furnished with the tenant's furniture; (b) the tenant can establish that at all times he or she has maintained the unit as his or her primary residence and intends to occupy it as such at the expiration of the sublease; (c) an owner may terminate the tenancy of a tenant who sublets or assigns contrary to the terms of this paragraph but no action or proceeding based on the nonprimary residence of a tenant may be commenced prior to the expiration date of his or her lease; (d) where an apartment is sublet the prime tenant shall retain the right to a renewal lease and the rights and status of a tenant in occupancy as they relate to conversion to condominium or cooperative ownership; (e) where a tenant violates the provisions of subparagraph (a) of this paragraph the subtenant shall be entitled to damages of three times the overcharge and may also be awarded attorneys fees and interest from the date of the overcharge at the rate of interest payable on a judgment pursuant to section five thousand four of the civil practice law and rules; (f) the tenant may not sublet the unit for more than a total of two years, including the term of the proposed sublease, out of the four-year period preceding the termination date of the proposed sublease. The provisions of this subparagraph shall only apply to subleases commencing on and after July first, nineteen hundred eighty-three (g) for the purposes of this paragraph only, the term of the proposed sublease may extend beyond the term of the tenant's lease. In such event, such sublease shall be subject to the tenant's right to a renewal lease. The subtenant shall have no right to a renewal lease. It shall be unreasonable for an owner to refuse to consent to a sublease solely because such sublease extends beyond the tenant's lease; and (h) notwithstanding the provisions of section two hundred twenty-six-b of the real property law, a not-for-profit hospital shall have the right to sublet any housing accommodation leased by it to its affiliated personnel without requiring the landlord's consent to any such sublease and without being bound by the provisions of subparagraphs (b), (c) and (f) of this paragraph. Commencing with the effective date of this subparagraph, whenever a not-for- profit hospital executes a renewal lease for a housing accommodation, the legal regulated rent shall be increased by a sum equal to fifteen percent of the previous lease rental for such housing accommodation, hereinafter referred to as a vacancy surcharge, unless the landlord shall have received within the seven year period prior to the commencement date of such renewal lease any vacancy increases or vacancy surcharges allocable to the said housing accommodation. In the event the landlord shall have received any such vacancy increases or vacancy surcharges during such seven year period, the vacancy surcharge shall be reduced by the amount received by any such vacancy increase or vacancy surcharges. d. (1) Each owner subject to the rent stabilization law shall furnish to each tenant signing a new or renewal lease, a rider describing the rights and duties of owners and tenants as provided for under the rent stabilization law of nineteen hundred sixty-nine. Such publication shall conform to the intent of section 5- 702 of the general obligations law and shall be attached as an addendum to the lease. Upon the face of each lease, in bold print, shall appear the following: "Attached to this lease are the pertinent rules and regulations governing tenants and landlords' rights under the rent stabilization law of nineteen hundred sixty-nine". (2) The rider shall be in a form promulgated by the commissioner in larger type than the lease and shall be utilized as provided in paragraph one of this subdivision. e. Each owner of premises subject to the rent stabilization law shall furnish to each tenant signing a new or renewal lease, a copy of the fully executed new or renewal lease bearing the signatures of owner and tenant and the beginning and ending dates of the lease term, within thirty days from the owner's receipt of the new or renewal lease signed by the tenant. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-512. STABILIZATION PROVISIONS. a. No owner of property subject to this law shall charge or collect any rent in excess of the initial legal regulated rent or adjusted initial legal regulated rent until the end of any lease or other rental agreement in effect on the local effective date until such time as a different legal regulated rent shall be authorized pursuant to guidelines adopted by a rent guidelines board. b. The initial regulated rent for housing accommodations subject to this law on the local effective date of the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four or which become subject to this law thereafter, pursuant to such act, shall be: (1) For housing accommodations which were regulated pursuant to this law or the city rent and rehabilitation law prior to July first, nineteen hundred seventy-one, and which became vacant on or after such date and prior to the local effective date of the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four, the rent reserved in the last effective lease or other rental agreement; provided that such initial rent may be adjusted on application of the tenant pursuant to subdivision b of section 26-513 of this chapter. (2) For housing accommodations which were regulated pursuant to the city rent and rehabilitation law on the local effective date of the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four, and thereafter become vacant, the rent agreed to by the landlord and the tenant and reserved in a lease or provided for in a rental agreement; provided that such initial rent may be adjusted on application of the tenant pursuant to subdivision b of section 26-513 of this chapter. (3) For housing accommodations other than those described in paragraphs one and two of this subdivision, the rent reserved in the last effective lease or other rental agreement. (4) For any plot or parcel of land which had been regulated pursuant to the city rent and rehabilitation law prior to July first, nineteen hundred seventy-one and which, (i) became vacant on or after July first, nineteen hundred seventy-one and prior to July first, nineteen hundred seventy-four, the rent reserved in a lease or other rental agreement in effect on June thirtieth, nineteen hundred seventy-four plus increases authorized by the rent guidelines board under this law for leases or other rental agreements commencing thereafter; provided that such initial rent may be adjusted on application of the tenant pursuant to subdivision b of section 26-513 of this chapter or, (ii) became vacant on or after July first, nineteen hundred seventy-four, the rent agreed to by the landlord and the tenant and reserved in a lease or other rental agreement plus increases authorized by the rent guidelines board under this law for leases or other rental agreements commencing thereafter; provided that such initial rent may be adjusted on application of the tenant pursuant to subdivision b of section 26-513 of this chapter. (iii) Where the commissioner has determined that the rent charged is in excess of the lawful rents as stated in subparagraph (i) or (ii) hereof, plus lawful increases thereafter, he or she shall provide for a cash refund or a credit, to be applied against future rent, in the amount of any rent overcharge collected by an owner and any penalties, costs, attorneys' fees and interest from the date of the overcharge at the rate of interest payable on a judgment pursuant to section five thousand four of the civil practice law and rules for which the owner is assessed. c. With respect to accommodations for which the initial legal regulated rent is governed by paragraph two of subdivision b hereof, no increase of such initial legal regulated rent pursuant to annual guidelines adopted by the rent guidelines board shall become effective until the expiration of the first lease or rental agreement taking effect after the local effective date of the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four, but in no event before one year after the commencement of such rental agreement. d. With respect to accommodations, other than those referred to in subdivision c, for which a lease is entered into after the local effective date of the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four, but before the effective date of the first guidelines applicable to such accommodations, the lease may provide for an adjustment of rent pursuant to such guidelines to be effective on the first day of the month next succeeding the effective date of such guidelines. e. Notwithstanding any contrary provisions of this law, on and after July first nineteen hundred eighty-four, the legal regulated rent authorized for a housing accommodation subject to the provisions of this law shall be the rent registered pursuant to section 26-517 of this chapter subject to any modification imposed pursuant to this law. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-513. APPLICATION FOR ADJUSTMENT OF INITIAL RENT. a. The tenant or owner of a housing accommodation made subject to this law by the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four may, within sixty days of the local effective date of this section or the commencement of the first tenancy thereafter, whichever is later, file with the commissioner an application for adjustment of the initial legal regulated rent for such housing accommodation. The commissioner may adjust such initial legal regulated rent upon a finding that the presence of unique or peculiar circumstances materially affecting the initial legal regulated rent has resulted in a rent which is substantially different from the rents generally prevailing in the same area for substantially similar housing accommodations. b. 1. The tenant of a housing accommodation that was regulated pursuant to the city rent and rehabilitation law or this law prior to July first, nineteen hundred seventy-one and that became vacant on or after January first, nineteen hundred seventy-four may file with the commissioner within ninety days after notice has been received pursuant to subdivision d of this section, an application for adjustment of the initial legal regulated rent for such housing accommodation. Such tenant need only allege that such rent is in excess of the fair market rent and shall present such facts which, to the best of his or her information and belief, support such allegation. The rent guidelines board shall promulgate as soon as practicable after the local effective date of the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four guidelines for the determination of fair market rents for housing accommodations as to which any application may be made pursuant to this subdivision. In rendering a determination on an application filed pursuant to this subdivision b the commissioner shall be guided by such guidelines and by the rents generally prevailing in the same area for substantially similar housing accommodations. Where the commissioner has determined that the rent charged is in excess of the fair market rent he or she shall, in addition to any other penalties or remedies permitted by law, order a refund of any excess paid since January first, nineteen hundred seventy-four or the date of the commencement of the tenancy, whichever is later. Such refund shall be made by the landlord in cash or as a credit against future rents over a period not in excess of six months. 2. The provisions of paragraph one of this subdivision shall not apply to a tenant of a housing accommodation for which the initial legal regulated rent is no greater than the maximum rent that would have been in effect under this law on December thirty-first, nineteen hundred seventy-three, or for the period commencing January first, nineteen hundred seventy-four and ending December thirty-first, nineteen hundred seventy-five as calculated pursuant to the city rent and rehabilitation law (if no such maximum rent has been calculated for a particular unit for the period commencing January first, nineteen hundred seventy-four and ending December thirty-first, nineteen hundred seventy-five, the division of housing and community renewal shall calculate such a rent), as the case may be, if such apartment had not become vacant on or after January first, nineteen hundred seventy-four, plus the amount of any adjustment which would have been authorized under this law for renewal leases or other rental agreement, whether or not such housing accommodation was subject to this law for leases or other rental agreements commencing on or after July first, nineteen hundred seventy-four. c. Upon receipt of any application filed pursuant to this section, the commissioner shall notify the owner or tenant, as the case may be, and provide a copy to him or her of such application. Such owner or tenant shall be afforded a reasonable opportunity to respond to the application. A hearing may be held upon the request of either party, or the commissioner may hold a hearing on his or her own motion. The commissioner shall issue a written opinion to both the tenant and the owner upon rendering his or her determination. d. Within thirty days after the local effective date of the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four the owner of housing accommodations as to which an application for adjustment of the initial legal regulated rent may be made pursuant to subdivision b of this section shall give notice in writing by certified mail to the tenant of each such housing accommodation on a form prescribed by the commissioner of the initial legal regulated rent for such housing accommodation and of such tenant's right to file an application for adjustment of the initial legal regulated rent of such housing accommodation. e. Notwithstanding any contrary provision in this law an application for an adjustment pursuant to this section must be filed within ninety days from the initial registration. This subdivision shall not extend any other time limitations imposed by this law. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-514. MAINTENANCE OF SERVICES. In order to collect a rent adjustment authorized pursuant to the provisions of subdivision d of section 26-510 of this chapter an owner must file with the state division of housing and community renewal, on a form which the commissioner shall prescribe, a written certification that he or she is maintaining and will continue to maintain all services furnished on the date upon which the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy- four becomes a law or required to be furnished by any state law or local law, ordinance or regulation applicable to the premises. In addition to any other remedy afforded by law any tenant may apply to the state division of housing and community renewal for a reduction in the rent to the level in effect prior to its most recent adjustment and for an order requiring services to be maintained as provided in this section, and the commissioner shall so reduce the rent if it is found that the owner has failed to maintain such services. The owner shall also be barred from applying for or collecting any further rent increases. The restoration of such services shall result in the prospective elimination of such sanctions. The owner shall be supplied with a copy of the application and shall be permitted to file an answer thereto. A hearing may be held upon the request of either party, or the commissioner may hold a hearing upon his or her own motion. The commissioner may consolidate the proceedings for two or more petitions applicable to the same building or group of buildings or development. If the commissioner finds that the owner has knowingly filed a false certification, it shall, in addition to abating the rent, assess the owner with the reasonable costs of the proceeding, including reasonable attorneys' fees, and impose a penalty not in excess of two hundred fifty dollars for each false certification. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-515. RECOVERY OF POSSESSION. a. An owner seeking to recover possession pursuant to subparagraph (c) of paragraph nine of subdivision c of section 26-511 of this chapter shall notify the tenant in occupancy not more than one hundred fifty and not less than one hundred twenty days prior to the end of the tenant's lease term, by mail, of such owner's intention not to renew such lease in order to recover the dwelling unit for its charitable or educational purposes. The owner may give such notice within one hundred twenty days of the expiration of the tenant's lease term, provided it may not commence a summary proceeding to recover the dwelling unit until the expiration of one hundred twenty days from the giving of such notice and, provided, further, that the tenant may remain in occupancy until the commencement of such proceeding at the same rent and upon the same terms and conditions as were provided in his or her expired lease. The notice of intention not to renew the tenant's lease shall be accompanied by a notice on a form prescribed by the division of housing and community renewal setting forth the penalties to which an owner may be subject for his or her failure to utilize the tenant's dwelling unit for the charitable or educational purpose for which recovery of the dwelling unit is sought. b. If any owner who recovers a dwelling unit pursuant to such subparagraph (c), or any successor in interest, utilizes such unit for purposes other than those permitted under such subparagraph, then such owner or successor shall, unless for good cause shown, be liable to the removed tenant for three times the damages sustained on account of such removal plus reasonable attorney's fees and costs as determined by the court, provided that such tenant commences such action within three years from the date of recovery of the unit. The damages sustained by such tenant shall be the difference between the rent paid by such tenant for the recovered dwelling unit, and the rental value of a comparable rent regulated dwelling unit on the open market. In addition to any other damage, the reasonable cost of removal of the tenant's property shall be a lawful measure of damages. c. Where a dwelling unit has been recovered pursuant to such subparagraph (c) and within four years of such recovery is rented to a person or entity for purposes other than those permitted pursuant to such subparagraph (c), unless for good cause shown, the rent charged by such owner or any successor in interest for four years following such recovery shall not exceed the last regulated rent payable prior to such recovery. d. If the owner is found by the commissioner, to have recovered possession of a dwelling unit pursuant to such subparagraph (c) and within four years of such recovery such owner or any successor in interest shall have utilized such unit for purposes other than those permitted pursuant to such subparagraph (c), unless for good cause shown, the commissioner shall impose upon such owner or successor in interest, by administrative order after hearing, a civil penalty for any such violation. Such penalty shall be in an amount of up to one thousand dollars for each offense. Such order shall be deemed a final determination for the purposes of judicial review. Such penalty may, upon the expiration of the period for seeking review pursuant to article seventy- eight of the civil practice law and rules, be docketed and enforced in the manner of a judgment of the supreme court. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-516. ENFORCEMENT AND PROCEDURES. a. Subject to the conditions and limitations of this subdivision, any owner of housing accommodations who, upon complaint of a tenant, or of the state division of housing and community renewal is found by the state division of housing and community renewal, after a reasonable opportunity to be heard, to have collected an overcharge above the rent authorized for a housing accommodation subject to this chapter shall be liable to the tenant for a penalty equal to three times the amount of such overcharge. If the owner establishes by a preponderance of the evidence that the overcharge was not willful the state division of housing and community renewal shall establish the penalty as the amount of the overcharge plus interest. (i) Except as to complaints filed pursuant to clause (ii) of this paragraph, the legal regulated rent for purposes of determining an overcharge, shall be the rent indicated in the annual registration statement filed four years prior to the most recent registration statement, (or, if more recently filed, the initial registration statement) plus in each case any subsequent lawful increases and adjustments. (ii) As to complaints filed within ninety days of the initial registration of a housing accommodation, the legal regulated rent shall be deemed to be the rent charged on the date four years prior to the date of the initial registration of the housing accommodation (or, if the housing accommodation was subject to this chapter for less than four years, the initial legal regulated rent) plus in each case, any lawful increases and adjustments. Where the rent charged on the date four years prior to the date of the initial registration of the accommodation cannot be established, such rent shall be established by the division. Where the rent charged on the date four years prior to the date of initial registration of the housing accommodation cannot be established, such rent shall be established by the division provided that where a rent is established based on rentals determined under the provisions of the local emergency housing rent control act such rent must be adjusted to account for no less than the minimum increases which would be permitted if the housing accommodation were covered under the provisions of this chapter. (1) The order of the state division of housing and community renewal shall apportion the owner's liability between or among two or more tenants found to have been overcharged by such owner during their particular tenancy of a unit. (2) Except as provided under clauses (i) and (ii) of this paragraph, a complaint under this subdivision shall be filed with the state division of housing and community renewal within four years of the first overcharge alleged and no award of the amount of an overcharge may be based upon an overcharge having occurred more than four years before the complaint is filed. (i) No penalty of three times the overcharge may be based upon an overcharge having occurred more than two years before the complaint is filed or upon an overcharge which occurred prior to April first, nineteen hundred eighty-four. (ii) Any complaint based upon overcharges occurring prior to the date of filing of the initial rent registration as provided in section 26-517 of this chapter shall be filed within ninety days of the mailing of notice to the tenant of such registration. (3) Any affected tenant shall be notified of and given an opportunity to join in any complaint filed by an officer or employee of the state division of housing and community renewal. (4) An owner found to have overcharged may be assessed the reasonable costs and attorney's fees of the proceeding and interest from the date of the overcharge at the rate of interest payable on a judgment pursuant to section five thousand four of the civil practice law and rules. (5) The order of the state division of housing and community renewal awarding penalties may, upon the expiration of the period in which the owner may institute a proceeding pursuant to article seventy- eight of the civil practice law and rules, be filed and enforced by a tenant in the same manner as a judgment or not in excess of twenty percent thereof per month may be offset against any rent thereafter due the owner. b. In addition to issuing the specific orders provided for by other provisions of this law, the state division of housing and community renewal shall be empowered to enforce this law and the code by issuing, upon notice and a reasonable opportunity for the affected party to be heard, such other orders as it may deem appropriate. c. If the owner is found by the commissioner: (1) to have violated an order of the division the commissioner may impose by administrative order after hearing, a civil penalty in the amount of two hundred fifty dollars for the first such offense and one thousand dollars for each subsequent offense; or (2) to have harassed a tenant to obtain vacancy of his or her housing accommodation, the commissioner may impose by administrative order after hearing, a civil penalty for any such violation. Such penalty shall be in the amount of up to one thousand dollars for a first such offense and up to twenty-five hundred dollars for each subsequent offense or for a violation consisting of conduct directed at the tenants of more than one housing accommodation. Such order shall be deemed a final determination for the purposes of judicial review. Such penalty may, upon the expiration of the period for seeking review pursuant to article seventy-eight of the civil practice law and rules, be docketed and enforced in the manner of a judgment of the supreme court. d. Any proceeding pursuant to article seventy-eight of the civil practice law and rules seeking review of any action pursuant to this chapter shall be brought within sixty days of the expiration of the ninety day period and any extension thereof provided in subdivision h of this section or the rendering of a determination, whichever is later. Any action or proceeding brought by or against the commissioner under this law shall be brought in the county in which the housing accommodation is located. e. Violations of this law, or of the code and orders issued pursuant thereto may be enjoined by the supreme court upon proceedings commenced by the state division of housing and community renewal which shall not be required to post bond. f. In furtherance of its responsibility to enforce this law, the state division of housing and community renewal shall be empowered to administer oaths, issue subpoenas, conduct investigations, make inspections and designate officers to hear and report. The division shall safeguard the confidentiality of information furnished to it at the request of the person furnishing same, unless such information must be made public in the interest of establishing a record for the future guidance of persons subject to this law. g. Any owner who has duly registered a housing accommodation pursuant to section 26-517 of this chapter shall not be required to maintain or produce any records relating to rentals of such accommodation for more than four years prior to the most recent registration or annual statement for such accommodation. h. The state division of housing and community renewal may, by regulation, provide for administrative review of all orders and determinations issued by it pursuant to this chapter. Any such regulation shall provide that if a petition for such review is not determined within ninety days after it is filed, it shall be deemed to be denied. However, the division may grant one extension not to exceed thirty days with the consent of the party filing such petition; any further extension may only be granted with the consent of all parties to the petition. No proceeding may be brought pursuant to article seventy-eight of the civil practice law and rules to challenge any order or determination which is subject to such administrative review unless such review has been sought and either (1) a determination thereon has been made or (2) the ninety day period provided for determination of the petition for review (or any extension thereof) has expired. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-517. RENT REGISTRATION. a. Each housing accommodation which is subject to this law shall be registered by the owner thereof with the state division of housing and community renewal prior to July first, nineteen hundred eighty-four upon forms prescribed by the commissioner. The data to be provided on such forms shall include the following: (1) the name and address of the building or group of buildings or development in which such housing accommodation is located and the owner and the tenant thereof; (2) the number of housing accommodations in the building or group of buildings or development in which such housing accommodation is located; (3) the number of housing accommodations in such building or group of buildings or development subject to this code and the number of such housing accommodations subject to the local emergency housing rent control act; (4) the rent charged on the registration date; (5) the number of rooms in such housing accommodation; and (6) all services provided on the date that the housing accommodation became subject to this chapter. a.1. Within thirty days of changing his address, the managing agent or, if there is no managing agent, the owner, of a building or group of buildings or development, such agent or owner shall advise the state division of housing and community renewal and all tenants of his new address. b. Registration pursuant to this section shall not be subject to the freedom of information law provided that registration information relative to a tenant owner, lessor or subtenant shall be made available to such party or his or her authorized representative. c. Housing accommodations which become subject to this chapter after the initial registration period must be registered within ninety days thereafter. Registration of housing accommodations subject to the local emergency housing rent control act immediately prior to the date of initial registration as provided in this section shall include, in addition to the items listed above, where existing the maximum base rent immediately prior to the date that such housing accommodations become subject to this chapter. d. Copies of the registration shall be filed with the state division of housing and community renewal in such place or places as it may require. In addition one copy of that portion of the registration statement which pertains to the tenant's unit must be mailed by the owner to the tenant in possession at the time of initial registration or to the first tenant in occupancy if the apartment is vacant at the time of initial registration. e. The failure to file a proper and timely initial or annual rent registration statement shall, until such time as such registration is filed, bar an owner from applying for or collecting any rent in excess of the legal regulated rent in effect on the date of the last preceding registration statement or if no such statements have been filed, the legal regulated rent in effect on the date that the housing accommodation became subject to the registration requirements of this section. The filing of a late registration shall result in the prospective elimination of such sanctions. f. An annual statement shall be filed containing the current rent for each unit and such other information contained in subdivision a of this section as shall be required by the division. The owner shall provide each tenant then in occupancy with a copy of that portion of such annual statement as pertains to the tenant's unit. g. Each housing accommodation for which a timely registration statement was filed between April first, nineteen hundred eighty-four and June thirtieth nineteen hundred eighty-four, pursuant to subdivision a of this section shall designate the rent charged on April first, nineteen hundred eighty- four, as the rent charged on the registration date. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-517.1. FEES. a. The Department of Finance shall collect from the owner of each housing accommodation registered pursuant to Section 26- 517 of this law an annual fee in the amount of ten dollars per year for each unit subject to this law, in order to defray costs incurred by the city pursuant to subdivision c of section eight of the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen hundred seventy-four. b. Pursuant to the provisions of subdivision d of section eight of the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen hundred seventy-four, the failure to pay the fee imposed by the provisions of subdivision a of this section shall preclude an owner from applying for or collecting any further rent increases authorized under this chapter or any other provision of law, and the late payment of such fee shall result in the prospective elimination only of the sanctions contained therein Interest shall be imposed on such late payment at the same rate as is imposed on a delinquent tax on real property. c. The provisions of subdivision a of this section shall be deemed to have been in full force and effect as of April first, nineteen hundred eighty-four. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-518. HOTEL INDUSTRY STABILIZATION ASSOCIATION. a. The hotel industry stabilization association registered with the department of housing preservation and development is hereby divested of all its powers and authority under this law. The stabilization code heretofore promulgated by such association, as approved by the department of housing preservation and development, is hereby continued to the extent that it is not inconsistent with law. Such code may be amended from time to time provided, however, that no such amendments shall be promulgated except by action of the commissioner of the division of housing and community renewal and provided further, that prior to the adoption of any such amendments, the commissioner shall (i) submit the proposed amendments to the commissioner of the department of housing preservation and development and allow such commissioner thirty days to make comments or recommendations on the proposed amendments, (ii) review the comments or recommendations, if any, made pursuant to clause (i) of this subdivision and make any revisions to the proposed amendments which the commissioner of the division of housing and community renewal deems appropriate provided that any such review and revision shall be completed within thirty days of receipt of such comments or recommendations and (iii) thereafter hold a public hearing on the proposed amendments. No provision of such code shall impair or diminish any right or remedy granted to any party by this law or any other provision of law. b. A code shall not be approved hereunder unless it appears to the commissioner of the division of housing and community renewal that it provides for a cash refund or a credit to be applied against future rent, in the amount of the excess, if any, of rent paid since January first, nineteen hundred sixty-nine, over the permissible fair increase, and that it gives a hotel tenant the right to request a six month lease at the permissible rent rate within thirty days of the approval of such code, or, if his or her tenancy commences after such thirty day period, within thirty days of the commencement of his or her tenancy, and that is in compliance with the standards set forth in subdivision c of section 26-511 to the extent such standards are applicable to the hotel industry, and that it provides specifically that no owner shall refuse to extend or renew a tenancy for the purpose of preventing a hotel tenant from becoming a permanent tenant. c. Each landlord who is made subject to this law pursuant to section 26-505 or 26-506 of this code shall furnish to each permanent tenant signing a new or renewal lease, a rider describing the rights and duties of owners and tenants as provided under the rent stabilization law of nineteen hundred sixty-nine. Such rider shall be in a form promulgated by the commissioner and shall conform to the intent of section 5-702 of the general obligations law and shall be in a print size larger than the print size of the lease to which the rider is attached. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-519. SUSPENSION OF REGISTRATION. The department of housing preservation and development may, after notice and opportunity for hearing, suspend the registration of an association if it finds that the articles, code, rules or other conduct thereof do not conform to the requirements of this law and any such suspension shall remain in effect until such administration issues an order determining that such articles, rules, code or other conduct have been modified to conform with such requirements. For the purposes of this law, the members in good standing of the association shall be deemed to be members in good standing of an association registered with the department of housing preservation and development during and only during, the first sixty days of such period of suspension. ----------------------------------------------------------- Sec. 26-520. EXPIRATION DATE. This chapter shall expire on April first, nineteen hundred ninety- one unless rent control shall sooner terminate as provided in subdivision three of section one of the local emergency housing rent control law. ------------------------------------------------------------ ------------------------------------------------------------


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