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If a landlord fails to provide a renewal lease on time, what are the guidelines for notice, renewal and increase?

Brooklyn, NY |

I have lived in the same apartment for 4 years. This year, the landlord defaulted to send renewal, the original agreement expired in September of 2012. I proceeded to pay month-to-month based on my previous rate, and had heard nothing regarding the renewal that I requested via phone. I received an email one week ago (12/20/2012) saying that I should expect my renewal information in a few days because they noticed it had expired. Today I received a new lease agreement (is not a renewal, does not document any renewal terms and does not reference a 1 or 2 year option reflecting percentage choices as per usual). It is a new agreement starting 1/1/2013 with a 28% increase. (from 2334 to 3000/month). 1) Can they raise/renew with such short notice? 2) what are max increases for renewal?

Attorney Answers 2

  1. Dear can they raise/renew with such short notice?

    There are no rules or regulations controlling rent increases and renewal periods for tenancies that are not rent stabilized. You did not indicate that your tenancy is rent stabilized. The rules of the "free market" are at play, and that allows the landlord to dictate or decide to renew or not and at a particular increase. A non-rent stabilized tenant can negotiate the rent increase. If an agreement is made for the new rent and lease period, the landlord and tenant relation will continue.

    If by chance you are rent stabilized, then you described a breach of the procedure for the offer of the renewal lease and likely a rent increase that is not sanctioned by law. Review the information about renewal leases and the current rent increase order at:

    If you are rent stabilized you may need to engage an attorney to protect your tenancy rights.

    Good luck.

    The answer provided to you is in the nature of general information. The general proposition being that you should try to avoid a bad outcome if you can.

  2. I agree with Mr. Smollen with one wrinkle. You mentioned that prior leases had options to renew for 1 or 2 year terms with set increases. Did the last lease have any option? If so, you may be able to exercise the option and extend the lease. If not, then assuming the unit is not rent contolled the landlord can ask for whatever increase he feels the market will bear.

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