Sky High: NYC Rent Could Go Up For 1 Million Apartments, Rent Board Approves

Sky High: NYC Rent Could Go Up For 1 Million Apartments, Rent Board Approves

Frustrations spilled over during a Rent Guidelines Board meeting where a vote passed on one-year and two-year leases for rent-stabilized apartments in New York City.

ABC 7 reports the preliminary vote passed 5-4 on Tuesday night, proposing a range of rent hikes – 2-5% for one-year leases and 4-7% for two-year leases, before a final vote. Tenant advocates and landlords put pressure on the board, with some even jumping on stage to protest, as seen in a viral video on Twitter.

NYC tenants like Claristine Gardner, who say they are drowning in debt, decided enough is enough. “The pandemic had us down for so long,” Gardner said. “How could we afford our increase right now? Most of us don’t have jobs.” No resident is safe from the rent increase, including New York City Councilmember Sandy Nurse, who joined the protest as her landlord wants to push her rent-stabilized apartment to market value. “Tonight is about sending a message that New York City tenants cannot take it anymore,” Nurse said.

According to NBC 4, Mayor Eric Adams opposed the board voting at the high end of the increase—7% for two-year leases. But that was after he unveiled the proposal to a panel of the Rent Stabilization Association that would affect about a million rent-stabilized apartments. The group represents thousands of small building landlords who say a rent increase is unavoidable between inflation, tax hikes, insurance, and more.

Many blamed former NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio. “Still better than the irresponsible and reckless de Blasio year, but not quite the appreciation of the increasing costs building owners are always facing,” one member said. Advocates argued that the increase would lead to regular New York City residents being unable to continue living in the city, calling the hike “cold-blooded.”

The final vote is scheduled for June 21.