Monday, December 22, 2014

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The Call Blog: Mayor De Blasio, Tenants, Landlords React To Rent Vote

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While tenants in rent-stabilized apartments wanted a zero percent hike, a minimal one percent is better than a possible three percent that could have been. One of our callers mentioned that there should be more transparency in landlords' expenses each year so that tenants are able to see where exactly their money is being used for and if it is being used appropriately to repair infrastructures of their buildings.

Your thoughts and comments are posted below.

The morning after the Rent Guidelines Board voted on increases for stabilized tenants, Mayor de Blasio said an "affordability crisis" in New York City makes it "clear we needed change." But many tenants say it's not the change they wanted. And landlords aren't happy either.

The board voted 5-4 last night to raise rents on stabilized apartments by 1% on one-year leases and 2.75% on two-year leases. Tenant groups were calling for a rent freeze to counteract higher increases in the past. And landlord groups were calling for a 9.5% hike for two-year leases to offset rising costs.

Are you commending or criticizing Mayor de Blasio's leadership pertaining to this vote? Are you concerned landlords won't address problems because they cannot afford to maintain buildings? What is the worst action you've seen a landlord or tenant do to avoid responsibility? If all sides of this issue are unhappy with last night's vote, what reforms would you suggest to improve the rent-regulated system?

Send your thoughts using the link above.

Mayor Diblasio was hoping his appointees were going to vote for a rent freeeze but some of them didn't, the Mayor needs to create more affordable housing and reopen section 8 soon the vacant buildings need to be torn down and build affordable housing. i'm glad i'm in the DRIE program i don't pay that much, i feel bad for the families with a lot of kids that are struggling just to get by

Upper West Side

I have a solution, give a rent stabilized buy out to all tenants so that they can move to other states with a better cost of living and then only the rich will remain in NYC. Most who live in rent stabilized apartments only have one source of income anyway. Problem solved!!!!!


Increase or not, our landlord is a billionaire and repairs have went undone for months. It's obvious the people he has managing his buildings in NYC is a joke, nor do they care. As long as he gets 5g's -10g's a month, he will continue to take zero responsibility for the idiots he has employed to managed his company. Due to his lack of responsibility, we're finally bringing him out of the dog house.


Tell DeBlasio that I don't understand so why doesn't he explain it to me in Italian. This guy knew very well all along just what the outcome would be. From the beginning this administration is not ready for prime time and they have no class at all. So all of these tenants must suffer once again. [THIS DE BLASIO IS A BIG BAG OF WIND !!! ]

Morris Park

It's no surprise that these increases took place. They are in response to DeBlasio's progressive agenda. Impeach him now! Before he destroys NYC.

Port Richmond

Whatever heart and soul is left from the city of the 70's and 80's lives in rent stabilized and rent control apartments. The rich and powerful are trying to squeeze that last bit of old ny out- what ashame- no respect for the history of the city -the city is losing its soul-


I am not concerned about the land lords at all. The LANDED GENTRY have again gained another victory in their incremental quest to move those on the economical lower tiers of society deep into the outer boroughs or rid New York City of them all together. There has been a war waged on the poor since the squats on the Lower East Side and tent cities were removed from Tompkins Square Park in the late 1980's and it certainly has not ended yet.

Kew Gardens

After last year's exorbitant rent increases, a rent freeze, or narrow increase, was long overdue. But the annual rent guidelines are not the only issue. We need a moratorium on MCI (Major Capital Improvement) increases. Landlords can file for increases for a new or repaired roof or replacing windows. But isn't that what they agreed to provide in return for our rent? Walls, a roof, a floor, windows, heat and hot water is what our rent pays for. Why can landlords boost rents by hundreds of dollars a month for providing what they are obligated to provide in return for our rent check? It's like saying my employer should pay me and then pay me a second time when I decide to actually show up for work. MCI's and inflated and fraudulent individual apartment improvements are responsible for the mass exodus of apartments from the rent stabilized system. High rents also distort the local economy because too much money gets funneled into real estate as opposed to other parts of the economy that could benefit from people's disposable income.


A lot of people don't realize that apart from the increases the RGB approves for yearly and two-yearly lease renewals, many, many rent stabilized tenants have to pay for "Major Capital Improvements" that the landlord applies for the and the landlord-loving DHCR always approves. These can be very significant increases in the rent and are almost always retroactive and always in perpetuity. Unfortunately, these MCIs can be for very bogus and bs "improvements," such as doing repairs that should be part of ongoing maintenance or slapping a little paint up the walls of the boiler room. Stuyvesant Town is one place that gets hit with these increases big time and they can push the rent up significantly.

Stuyvesant Town

I'm a stabilized tenant and I think that landlords got ripped off last night. Just the cost of fuel this last winter had to be astronomical for landlords. Unfortunately only 25 percent of New Yorkers voted in the Mayoral election and this is what we got. I do not agree with anything Deblasio has done so far; he tells everyone who works for him what to do and they do it. There are no independent thinkers in City Hall.

Midtown East

You may be fair. The rent guidelines board soley looks at owner costs! All of the owners! Every tenant does not get the attention your buildings do. I have a toilet thats been leaking for a month. Why cant the 4% you got last year fix that?


The landlord of my building takes tenants to court for eviction to avoid repairs. They make up reasons of tenants being nuisances or allege false non payment cases to avoid properly fixing the building.


77% of rent regulated housing is owned by 13% of landlords. The issues of Repairs and increased costs to landlords are red herrings because the actual numbers show that landlords profits have risen over the last five years to record levels, particularly because of the high rent increases granted by the RGB under Bloomberg. There is a hardship provision in the rent regulations which permit higher increases if a landlord can show hardship. Landlords cry and scream but won't open their books. The rent stabilization assoc. is disseminating lies to the people of NYC in the name of greed. Yes, costs have gone up, but so have profits. Just look at the numbers. Landlords are not suffering. Tenants deserve a roll back in rents due to the high increases over the last years.
The fact that the RGB voted for rent increases despite the mayor's wishes shows just how powerful the real estate lobby is in this city. They run this city, not the mayor.


Since the landlords have gotten increases every year, while no one's salary went up. I agree the city is losing. We need to have rent control for commercial leases. We are losing too many small businesses. When the landlord had repeated increases, they never put the money into the houses, they pocketed it. The should have plenty of extra money from previous increases to cover last year's winter..they should have bought a lot of fuel in the summer to cover the expenses of last winter. I wish salaries went up as much as the rent increases have in the last 10 years!


The Dream of living in NYC and saving for your own home is gone. Nobody can afford to save with these High Rents.


NYC residents have not enjoyed the luxury of having a Mayor negotiate with utility companies because of past rent increass so for Jim to suggest that Mayor DeBlasio should advocate & negotiate dor owners... .outrageous! Owners and RE MOGULS have become so accustomed to Bloomberg tactics of outrageous rent increases no matter what! During the height of the economic downturn, hard working renters were forced to endure rent increases and a huge spike in Con Edison costs! Finally, we have a Mayor that is concerned about the working class!


Today I went to see my Manger Ms Flowers about my upstairs neighbors & their constant noise for almost 4 years. They have damaged my apartment bathroom, kitchen, & floor with numerous floods. She told me I am “harassing Housing” with my numerous complaints. To add insult to injury my rent is paid up 3 months in advance. The damages have been unrepaired since 2011.

Red Hook West

I think I may have a solution!! I think what Mayor DiBlasio should do is figure out a way to take a percentage of our rent expense off of New Yorkers' local income tax. Since our salaries do not go up and this is rent is an expense, have a percentage of the tenants rent expense as an itemized deduction on our local income tax.


NYC residents have not enjoyed the luxury of having a Mayor negotiate with utility companies because of past rent increases so for Jim Silber to suggest that Mayor DeBlasio should advocate & negotiate dor owners... outrageous! Owners and Real Estate MOGULS have become so accustomed to past Bloomberg tactics of outrageous rent increases no matter what, they feel "entitled" to get yearly rent hikes! During the height of the economic downturn, hard working renters were forced to endure rent increases and a huge spike in Con Edison costs! Now the tables have turned. Finally, we have a Mayor that is concerned about the working class!


I believe that this city has become more about the money then actually the people that live here. A lot of gentrification is going on and I think sooner or later that is what it will all be about.


Unfortunately the tenants that are in a rent stabilized building do not realize that their cup is half full. That an individual tax paying citizen owns the building they live in. Buildings require maintenance - expenses rise yearly is this a sudden news flash? They should be barking at the city/state governments to provide rent stabilized buildings, that are owned by the city/state . Let the government provide housing, they create inflation and rising costs of living, let the government balance out their own mess...why is this the responsibility of a person who owns property ? Why should this be a life punishment for property owners ? There are lots of renters in NY willing to pay Market rents. Be grateful you are below market !


I Hear everyone talking about raising rent prices no ones talking about raising the Department of Transportation employees salaries.


To the gentlement who just called by the name of Delvis, the waiting list for NYCHA is about 10yrs plus and not as easy to apply to, let alone get into.


Is crazy how everything is getting harder in NYC. Everyone here is not rich, we keep on voting for people who don't fight for us.. Is crazy how you can't even find a studio for $800. Greedy people and the government not caring for the people.


People who think that scrapping New York State's rent laws would mean an automatic drop in rent costs are forgetting recent history. In 1997 when the rent laws temporarily expired, a landlord on the Upper West Side tried to increase one tenant's formerly stabilized rent from $915.75 a month to $4000 a month for a one-year lease, or $5000 a month for a two-year lease! Anyone who thinks history won't repeat itself in a similar circumstance is doomed.

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