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Old 04-25-2012, 08:50 AM
 
Location: Manhattan
1,760 posts, read 3,561,261 times
Reputation: 2562

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kefir King View Post
All zoning regulations are in effect, takings, of the sort that would encompass rent stabilization and rent control.
I think that is the primary reason the court would not--and really could not take the case. While I believe its true that forcing a private landlord to accept a tenant at below market rate is an unjust taking of property, one could also say that the fact the city won't allow me to open up a McDonalds in my apartment is also an unjust taking of my private property. Any zoning law that restricts a private property owner from developing their property into something more profitable is essentially the same thing.

Most rent regulated apartments do not house wealthy individuals though -- and smart real estate investors do not buy buildings filled with *too many* people paying $200 a month who will stay there for decades.

Nevertheless, I think affordable housing works best when the government itself takes on the burden of means testing and at least initially constructs buildings to house people. The current system is messy and does need to be reformed. The super cheap apartments might be a great deal, but landlords rightfully don't put much money into them outside of the very basic requirements. So, those tenants don't have a great quality of life while living there.

 
Old 04-25-2012, 09:10 AM
 
Location: Manhattan
21,414 posts, read 28,216,529 times
Reputation: 9696
If you go into the history of rent controls, there are two basic phases with two different reason for its institution. The first was nationwide during World War 2 when there was a danger of runaway inflation becasue of full employment. Price controls on necessities were needed. The country saw the same thing with food rationing at lower than market prices. People willing to pay $10 a pound for filet mignon could not do it without risking prison time.

When the war ended and things started cooling off, they didn't cool off for New york and there was a shortage of housing again threatening to boil over into immense rent increases because of shortages. There was very little building going on during the war effort. Returning veterans had to be helped with cheap housing for sale and stable rents.

Once established it was hard to toss people out so that rental housing could be priced at market rates for all. People got used to it and liked it.

So it's here to stay, it is the wish of the electorate that it stays, and the courts have held for 70 years that it is legal. So we have rent control (also rent "stabiliization") despite it's steady erosion by landlord lobbied politicians.
 
Old 04-25-2012, 09:43 AM
 
8,750 posts, read 16,018,404 times
Reputation: 4168
My 2 cents is this, and I have shared it before:

I am perfectly happy to restrict rent increases (income), but then we should also restrict expense increases!!! When you have incomes restricted to a small percentage increase, but you have to pay market rates for water/sewer (which have doubled over the past 5 years), heat (oil/gas), taxes, insurance, electric, and all the fines/fees and surcharges, nevermind the exorbitant costs to pull permits/repairs/maintenance...well you know how this story ends.

So if we want to be fair, that is the only way...cuz right now it is grossly lopsided. And to make it even simpler for you...if you only received pay increases of 3%, but car insurance, gas, food, housing, tuition, clothing, etc were increasing exponentially...how would you feel and what would you do? Unfortunately, that is pretty much the state of our economy today...and it's called a recession or rather stagnation, with real incomes falling, pricing power eroding, consumption declining = more stagnation, less investment, and the cycle continues.

So while in theory rent stabilization is wonderful, by not capping expenses, it is actually very detrimental to NYC as a whole, and to the residents, not just owners.

And the principle that you have to essentially keep a tenant for life, and potentially for generations, I think we can all agree is utterly ridiculous. If there is anything that needs revamping, it is the potential multigeneration occupation of an apt. A reasonable solution is a CAP (you like those remember?)....5 years, or 10 years, whatever timeframe but we need one, in which a Landlord can legally not renew a tenant for whatever reason. Is that really unreasonable?
 
Old 04-25-2012, 02:11 PM
 
Location: Manhattan
1,760 posts, read 3,561,261 times
Reputation: 2562
Quote:
Originally Posted by SobroGuy View Post
My 2 cents is this, and I have shared it before:

I am perfectly happy to restrict rent increases (income), but then we should also restrict expense increases!!! When you have incomes restricted to a small percentage increase, but you have to pay market rates for water/sewer (which have doubled over the past 5 years), heat (oil/gas), taxes, insurance, electric, and all the fines/fees and surcharges, nevermind the exorbitant costs to pull permits/repairs/maintenance...well you know how this story ends.

So if we want to be fair, that is the only way...cuz right now it is grossly lopsided. And to make it even simpler for you...if you only received pay increases of 3%, but car insurance, gas, food, housing, tuition, clothing, etc were increasing exponentially...how would you feel and what would you do? Unfortunately, that is pretty much the state of our economy today...and it's called a recession or rather stagnation, with real incomes falling, pricing power eroding, consumption declining = more stagnation, less investment, and the cycle continues.

So while in theory rent stabilization is wonderful, by not capping expenses, it is actually very detrimental to NYC as a whole, and to the residents, not just owners.

And the principle that you have to essentially keep a tenant for life, and potentially for generations, I think we can all agree is utterly ridiculous. If there is anything that needs revamping, it is the potential multigeneration occupation of an apt. A reasonable solution is a CAP (you like those remember?)....5 years, or 10 years, whatever timeframe but we need one, in which a Landlord can legally not renew a tenant for whatever reason. Is that really unreasonable?
On the first point, I can agree. It's not fair to expect a landlord to absorb rising expenses/taxes imposed by the city and state yet force that person to subsidize a tenant whose rent doesn't even cover the expenses needed to maintain their share of the building. There should certainly be tax breaks for landlords that house these tenants that gets increased for every regulated unit in the building.

However, when you purchased the building that already housed these tenants was their occupancy not a consideration? The fact that buyers purchase buildings with regulated tenants in the building at market prices suggests that the "problem" of regulated tenants in a private building is overblown. Clearly, there is still a profit to be made on the unregulated majority of units in the building.
 
Old 04-25-2012, 02:20 PM
 
8,750 posts, read 16,018,404 times
Reputation: 4168
I appreciate that you agree with my first point, as clearly restricting incomes but allowing expenses to go through the roof will inevitably spell disaster. Now how about my second point...you do not agree with a CAP on tenancy? An agreed upon timeframe, whether it is 5 years, 20 years, whatever, in which a landlord can legally not renew a tenant. As it stands now, apts can be occupied for generations...clearly that needs to change. Do you agree a CAP should be set? And maybe it would be reset back to 0 if the building is sold or transferred to a new owner? I think that is fair.

When purchasing a building, the occupancy is no doubt a consideration, but that is irrelevant to whether the rent stabilization law is fair or reasonable. I personally believe everyone in NYC should have a home, a basic right everyone should be afforded including education and healthcare. However, having private landlords incur the expense, problems, and lost profits as a means for the city to achieve this is where I disagree. The city can build housing exclusively to house people, and it has. But creating laws so that the city can guarantee housing by essentially guaranteeing tenants cannot be moved out of privately owned housing, potentially for multiple generations, is wrong.
 
Old 04-25-2012, 03:14 PM
 
Location: Bronx, New York
3,180 posts, read 6,330,312 times
Reputation: 1284
When I was in Brooklyn, I was in a rent-stabilized studio. The landlord, who owned much of the block, got a tax abatement for renovating all of the buildings on the block. In exchange, he had to keep a certain amount of units rent-stabilized for a period of time, I believe 15 years.

When the 15 years were up, he was legally able to raise the rents to market rates. However, he had to give at least a year notice that he was going market rate.

The reason that I know this was because after I got my notice, I called DHCR. The folk at the agency confirmed that it was within the landlord's legal right to raise the rents to market rate after the abatement period expired.

I had two choices: negotiate with the landlord or leave. After weighing all the factors (staying in a great neighborhood v. wanting more space, wanting to be a homeowner, etc), I chose the later!

Landlord raised the rent $550, and got a tenant quickly.
 
Old 04-25-2012, 04:01 PM
 
Location: Confines of the 101 Precinct
19,460 posts, read 34,519,331 times
Reputation: 8314
Quote:
Originally Posted by SobroGuy View Post
My 2 cents is this, and I have shared it before:

I am perfectly happy to restrict rent increases (income), but then we should also restrict expense increases!!! When you have incomes restricted to a small percentage increase, but you have to pay market rates for water/sewer (which have doubled over the past 5 years), heat (oil/gas), taxes, insurance, electric, and all the fines/fees and surcharges, nevermind the exorbitant costs to pull permits/repairs/maintenance...well you know how this story ends.

So if we want to be fair, that is the only way...cuz right now it is grossly lopsided. And to make it even simpler for you...if you only received pay increases of 3%, but car insurance, gas, food, housing, tuition, clothing, etc were increasing exponentially...how would you feel and what would you do? Unfortunately, that is pretty much the state of our economy today...and it's called a recession or rather stagnation, with real incomes falling, pricing power eroding, consumption declining = more stagnation, less investment, and the cycle continues.

So while in theory rent stabilization is wonderful, by not capping expenses, it is actually very detrimental to NYC as a whole, and to the residents, not just owners.

And the principle that you have to essentially keep a tenant for life, and potentially for generations, I think we can all agree is utterly ridiculous. If there is anything that needs revamping, it is the potential multigeneration occupation of an apt. A reasonable solution is a CAP (you like those remember?)....5 years, or 10 years, whatever timeframe but we need one, in which a Landlord can legally not renew a tenant for whatever reason. Is that really unreasonable?
My only issue is that you keep it honest and say you want to maximize your profit. Because operating expenses come with the territory. Are you having trouble paying your utility bills? Are you 30-60 days late on either one them due to you not receiving market rate on one of your units? That's my issue. That's why I go to work too, to make money. Be honest and say it's for profit. Every LL comes on here and whines about operating expenses. Not one of them has said "things have gotten so bad, I can't pay the water bill or I'm delinquent on the sewer bill, I don't know what to tell my tenants, but operating costs have gotten so bad/expensive I can't buy this month's oil." That's not what it's about. But if you say you want to maximize profit, you're afraid you'll look like a bad guy. So what. Say it. Nobody expects you to run a charity.

So to all my landlords - are rent stabilized tenants in your building causing you financial hardship in not being able to pay your porters/oil shipment/gas bill/electricity/water for the building? If yes, then I will show sympathy. I cannot show sympathy to anybody getting their feet wet in this game without knowing the deal. Only one so far that gets a pass from me is Mathjak, because he's been in the game as long as I've been born. Oil don't cost the same in 1981 as it does now. That I get.
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Old 04-25-2012, 04:34 PM
 
70,898 posts, read 71,245,628 times
Reputation: 48483
no different really than anyone here forced to take a pay cut. you may be paying your bills but its not the job or the pay you signed on for.
 
Old 04-25-2012, 04:55 PM
 
Location: Confines of the 101 Precinct
19,460 posts, read 34,519,331 times
Reputation: 8314
Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
no different really than anyone here forced to take a pay cut. you may be paying your bills but its not the job or the pay you signed on for.
Exactly why I wouldn't tell my boss I can do the same job for $100 less a week. Same reason why if you could rent an apt for $200 more a month you would. It is what it is.
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Old 04-25-2012, 05:07 PM
 
Location: Manhattan
21,414 posts, read 28,216,529 times
Reputation: 9696
Quote:
From Sobroguy: Now how about my second point...you do not agree with a CAP on tenancy? An agreed upon timeframe, whether it is 5 years, 20 years, whatever, in which a landlord can legally not renew a tenant.
As for a reason, certain societies, New York State among them, have deemed that it is too big a hardship to be deprived of housing without a very substantial and societally beneficial reason. A substantial reason has NOT found to be a landlord's desire for an unreasonable rent increase. For certain housing "reasonable" has been defined SOCIETALLY to be the RGB annual allowable increase or a predetermined fair return for the landlord to avoid his hardship.

Does anyone doubt that to be told his tenancy is at an end very often represents a hardship, perhaps an EXTREME hardship? I've moved recently and, let me tell you, it was pure Hell.
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