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Landlord and Tenant Law in a Changing New York

By Casey C. Sullivan, Esq. on July 27, 2016 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

The de Blasio administration announced yesterday that it was beating its affordable housing goals, but if you're a New York City resident, you might be forgiven if you haven't noticed.

Rents continue to skyrocket in NYC, and if you're a legal professional, that means more than just struggling to find an affordable apartment this side of Jamaica, Queens. The rental market in New York has led to a host of landlord and tenant issues, from disputes over gentrification to disputes over short-term rentals.

Landlord and Tenant Law in the New New York

Finding a decent place in New York City has been a struggle ever since Giovanni da Verrazzano began negotiating residency terms with the Lenape tribe in 1524. Of course, today's lease issues are slightly different from those in colonial times.

Today, practitioners in New York face a variety of landlord and tenant issues. There are concerns over displacement and gentrification, and pushes for increasing affordable housing to counteract those trends. Mayor de Blasio's Mandatory Inclusionary Housing plan, for example, allows developers to increase the height and density of new construction in exchange for setting aside a percentage of affordable rental units. And while New York rental prices continue to rise, rent stabilization rules continue to protect many tenants.

Of course, no discussion of modern-day Gotham could be complete without talking about Airbnb and other short-term rental companies. Short-term rentals have proliferated throughout the city, as landlords and tenants both convert apartments into weekend getaways for tourists -- sometimes in violation of city code. These rentals have raised a host of legal issues, from New York's highly-publicized legal battles with the rental platforms, to the need for short term rentals marketed as public accommodations to comply with accessibility laws for the disabled.

Bring in the Lawyers

Thankfully, for attorneys dealing with such issues, finding valuable guidance is much easier than finding a decent two-bedroom in Manhattan. Take, for example, "New York City Landlord and Tenant Laws: The Market and the City Under Mayor de Blasio," published by Thomson Reuters Aspatore. (Disclosure: Aspatore is a FindLaw sister company.)

This special report brings together leading New York lawyers to discuss everything from affordable housing development, to housing court and rent stabilization laws, to what to do when rats literally rake possession of a commercial property. (Hey, not all of NYC has been fully gentrified yet.)

If you're a legal professional in NYC, it's a great addition to your law library, whether you practice landlord-tenant law, real estate law, or you're just a renter or landlord yourself.

Want to explore the legal market in New York? Research salary data and job trends on Indeed, for free.

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