How To Find Out If You Have A Rent-Stabilized Apartment In NYC

the openigloo team

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Rent-Stabilized Apartments In NYC

Without knowing if you live in a rent-stabilized apartment, you can’t hold your landlords accountable and could be subject to illegal rent increases.

Since August 2020, openigloo users have been sharing anonymous reviews about their buildings and landlords. Some renters have shared their experience of learning they were occupying rent-stabilized units and paying more than the legal rent. One openigloo user shared, “Our apartment was rent-stabilized, but the landlords didn’t disclose it, overcharged us for years while submitting increases to the NYC government.”

Rent-Stabilized Apartments In NYC

What is a rent-stabilized apartment in NYC, and why should you care about them?

The New York State Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) oversees rent stabilization as a form of rent regulation. Rents rose sharply in many postwar buildings in 1969, causing the rent-stabilization system to take effect. The system has been extended and amended over the years, and now about one million apartments in New York City are covered by rent stabilization. But simply put, having a rent-stabilized lease means 2 things:

  • The landlord has to renew your lease
  • The rent can only go up a certain amount every year

How much can your landlord raise the rent on a stabilized lease?

Rent Stabilized Apartment In NYC FB size Mar 2021

So how can you find out if you have a rent-stabilized unit if your landlord hasn’t disclosed it?

But how can you find a rent-stabilized apartment?

“These apartments are rent stabilized which means they can’t raise rents more than a certain amount – make sure you are getting the right lease renewal as they depend on renters not knowing their rights on this.”

You can also search for an address on the DHCR database to see if it may have stabilized units. But again, you won’t know if the specific unit you’re considering is regulated.

You can also check to see if an address has received a J-51 or 421-a abatement by checking NYC Department of Finance records. Developers are issued these tax abatements in exchange for issuing stabilized units, so confirming this status is one way to verify if the building has stabilized apartments.

Some landlords and brokers will advertise a unit as rent-stabilized, so keep an eye out for that in the listing description. Currently, there are over 600 hits for rent-stabilized apartments in NYC on Craigslist.

Making sure you get a rent-stabilized lease

So while New York is trying to make renting in this city a little easier and more affordable, it’s up to the renter to know the status of their apartment and what laws apply to them. So the next time you’re in the market for an apartment, try and get your hands on a rent-stabilized apartment.