New York City Might Freeze Rents
New York Times:
Possible rent increases this year for New York City’s rent-stabilized apartments will run up to 3.5 percent on two-year leases, with a possibility of a rent freeze also on the horizon for one-year leases, according to a vote by members of the Rent Guidelines Board. Facing a boisterous, sign-waving audience in a packed Midtown auditorium, the nine-member panel voted to consider a 0 percent to 2 percent increase for one-year rent-stabilized leases when it reconvenes this summer for a final vote. Two-year leases could rise 0.5 percent to 3.5 percent, according to the board, which represents both tenants and landlords, though the rent numbers could go up or down after public hearings. The vote on Wednesday was the first by a board appointed entirely by Mayor Bill de Blasio, who last year called for freezing rents for the about one million rent-regulated apartments but did not get his way. The board, which already had a majority appointed by the mayor then, voted instead for historically low increases of 1 percent for one-year leases and 2.75 percent for leases of two years.The landlords association is fuming.