Rent-stabilized tenants may see largest rent hikes since 2008

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The city’s roughly 1 million rent-stabilized tenants are likely to see their largest rent hikes since 2008 when their leases are up, according to the Post. A study by the Rent Guidelines Board, which is scheduled to make a preliminary vote on this year’s rent increases this coming Tuesday, found that landlords’ operating costs rose 6.1 percent over the last 12 months thanks largely to the rising cost of heating fuel. Last year, when the board agreed to raise rents by a modest 2.25 percent for one-year lease renewals and 4.5 percent for two-year renewals, the numbers were based on a 3.4 percent uptick in landlord expenses. Based on the board’s latest study, rents for one-year leases will need to be raised by 3.25 percent and two-year leases by 6.5 percent. In 2008, tenants were forced to pay an additional 4.5 percent or 8.5 percent to renew their leases. Tenant advocate Maggie Russell-Ciardi predicted “a big debate on fuels costs” as a result of the preliminary vote. “We’re saying, why pass on the energy costs every year when landlords should be investing in fuel efficiency?” The board’s final vote is slated for June. [Post]