It is important to note that these FAQs are not intended as a substitute for the definitions, interpretations, etc., contained in the respective rent regulatory statutes, codes, and regulations themselves, or any administrative or court decision construing such statutes, codes, and regulations, or any order of the New York City or County Rent Guidelines Boards.
Am I guaranteed a renewal lease in my unregulated apartment?

No. Except for rent regulated apartments, a tenant may only renew the lease with the consent of the landlord.

However, with passage of the Housing Stability & Tenant Protection Act (HSTPA) of 2019, landlords are now required to provide tenants with notice if they intend to raise the rent by more than 5 percent. They must also notify tenants if they do not intend to renew a lease. If a tenant has a lease of less than one year, a 30-day notice is now mandatory. A 60-day notice is required for renters who have lived in an apartment for more than one year, but less than two years, or have a lease of at least one year, but less than two years. Tenants who have lived in a unit for more than two years, or have a lease of at least two years, must get a 90-day notice.

If you face eviction, please see the 4th Question in our Miscellaneous FAQ.

Back to Top

As a rent stabilized tenant, do I have the right to a lease renewal?

Although there are some limited exceptions, tenants in rent stabilized apartments have a basic right under state law to select a lease renewal for a one- or two-year term. The landlord must give written notice to the tenant of the right to renewal no more than 150 days and not less than 90 days prior to the end of the lease. For more information on your right to renewal, see HCR Fact Sheet #4: Lease Renewal in Rent Stabilized Apartments. If you face harassment, see HCR Fact Sheet #17: Harassment. For more info, contact Homes and Community Renewal (HCR).

Back to Top

How much can the landlord raise my stabilized apartment rent?

See our Rent Increases FAQ. Also see HCR’s Leases and Rent Increases page.

Back to Top

How far in advance of the expiration of my rent stabilized lease must I be offered a renewal lease, and how long do I have to return the lease?

The owner of a rent stabilized building is required to send you a lease renewal between 90 and 150 days before your existing lease expires. You then have 60 days to accept the lease renewal offer. If you wait longer than 60 days the landlord can refuse to renew your lease and could move to evict you after the lease expires. For more information on lease renewal in rent stabilized apartments see HCR Fact Sheet #4: Lease Renewal in Rent Stabilized Apartments . For additional information, contact Homes and Community Renewal (HCR).

Back to Top

If I sometimes pay my rent late, will it affect my stabilized renewal lease?

The only way your landlord can deny you a renewal lease is through eviction in Housing Court. Following appropriate notice, a landlord may bring a summary nonpayment court proceeding to evict a tenant who fails to pay the agreed rent when due and to recover outstanding rent. More information on eviction can be found on our Legal Assistance page.

Back to Top

What should I do if my landlord has not sent me a renewal lease?

If your apartment is rent stabilized, you have the right to a lease renewal. The owner must give written notice of renewal by mail or personal delivery not more than 150 days and not less than 90 days before the existing lease expires. The offer to renew the lease for New York City tenants must be on a Renewal Lease Form [DHCR Form RTP-8]. For additional information, contact Homes and Community Renewal (HCR).

If your landlord has not contacted you yet with your renewal lease, you may wish to speak to him/her. To be certain your apartment is rent stabilized, contact HCR. If it is, and you haven’t received your renewal lease during the proper time frame, you may want to file a complaint with HCR using HCR Form RA-90, Tenant’s Complaint of Owner’s Failure to Renew Lease and/or Failure to Furnish a Copy of a Signed Lease.

Back to Top

Can I be evicted if I didn’t return my renewal lease in 60 days?

Under the rent stabilization rules, your landlord must mail you a lease renewal 90 to 150 days prior to the expiration of your current lease. If you do not return the lease within 60 days, the landlord may refuse to renew your lease and could move to evict you after the lease expires. For more information on lease renewal in rent stabilized apartments, see HCR Fact Sheet #4: Lease Renewal in Rent Stabilized Apartments. For additional information, contact Homes and Community Renewal (HCR). More information on eviction can be found on our Legal Assistance page.

However, if the landlord did not offer a timely renewal to you, that is, did not offer the renewal between 90 and 150 days prior to the expiration of the lease, that may be a mitigating factor. So, if this is the case, you should probably call the landlord and say that you want to remain in the apartment. If they object, you might remind them that they failed to send a timely renewal, and that if they attempt to evict you at the end of your lease you will use this in your defense. If the landlord insists on renting to someone else, you should probably consult with an attorney regarding the “late renewal” defense and whether this would stop an eviction action by your landlord.

Back to Top

How can I find out if the rent charged for my vacancy lease is correct?

In order to find out what the prior tenant was paying you need to contact Homes and Community Renewal (HCR). You can use the Ask HCR web portal to get your apartment rent history. In order to obtain the rent history, you will have to prove that you are the tenant in that unit because rent information is only given to the owner of the building and the tenants in place.

Once you have the prior tenants’ rent, you can see if you are paying the correct rent. See vacancy lease increases. Also see HCR’s Leases and Rent Increases page.

Back to Top

Can you help me decide between a one and two-year lease?

The lease renewal guidelines enacted by the NYC Rent Guidelines Board each year are based on a variety of factors, including the six annual reports prepared by the RGB staff, as well as testimony presented to the board at public meetings, hearings and in writing.

It is best to consider each year’s guidelines before making your renewal lease length decision. You may also want to read about the process by which the RGB determines the guidelines.

Back to Top