The Real Deal New York

Landlord group demands de Blasio cap cost increases

Cap would offset revenue loss tied to historically low rent increase, advocates say
July 08, 2014 04:50PM

The Rent Guidelines Board handed tenants – and Mayor Bill de Blasio — a victory last month when it passed the lowest rent increase in its history. Now the city’s leading advocate for rent-stabilized landlords is looking for an equalizer.

On Tuesday, the Rent Stabilization Association called for the de Blasio administration to cap increases in property tax assessments and water and sewer rates at one percent – the same ceiling placed on rent increases in regulated buildings, Capital New York reported.

“If City Hall is going to cap the income side of the equation at 1 percent, there must be an equitable 1 percent cap on the expense side – particularly on city-mandated expenses,” Joseph Strasburg, president of the Rent Stabilization Association, said in a statement.

The lobbying group said landlords of rent-stabilized buildings could get pinched this year. Not only will they see less income due to the low cap on rent increases, but the billable assessed value for Class 2 buildings, which includes rental buildings, is up 6.84 percent, according to Capital New York. That means many landlords would see higher tax bills.

Rent Stabilization Board staff say the cost of maintaining regulated buildings is up 5.7 percent over the last year, Capital New York reported. For that reason, they say, the one-percent cap is “tantamount to a rent roll back because landlords’ costs will now grow faster than their rents.” [Capital NY]Tom DiChristopher