Proposed Legislation Would Make it Cheaper to Rent Apartments in New York City: Report - NBC New York

Proposed Legislation Would Make it Cheaper to Rent Apartments in New York City: Report

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    NEWSLETTERS

    NYC Makes Move to Battle Broker Fees

    Some lawmakers want to make the process of renting an apartment affordable -- but brokers are not liking it. Gus Rosendale reports.

    (Published Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019)

    What to Know

    • Two NYC Council members will introduce a package of bills Wednesday that aim to make renting apartments more affordable, according to report

    • WSJ says bills proposed by two democrats look to put a cap on brokers' fees, security deposits to one month’s rent each on apartments

    • The bills also set standards on repayment of these fees for renters, the report says

    Two New York City Council members will introduce a package of bills Wednesday that aim to make renting apartments in one of the world's most expensive real estate marked more affordable, the Wall Street Journal reports.

    The bills by Councilman Keith Powers and Councilwoman Carlina Rivera, both democrats, look to put a cap on brokers' fees and security deposits to one month’s rent each on apartments, as well as set standards on repayment of these fees for renters, the report says.

    Security deposits often are set at one month’s rent, and there already is a one-month limit on rent-stabilized apartments, WSJ says. However, some units and brokers require a larger down payment. The proposed legislation would set requirements to make renting “reasonable and predictable” for tenants.

    “When you start adding up the rising cost of rent with broker fees and security deposits, it becomes really expensive to move, and it becomes really prohibitive for people to find a new place to live,” Powers, who represents part of Manhattan, told the Wall Street Journal, adding: “You sometimes have to pay five months rent before you move your couch in, before you walk in the door. That seems like a problem worth resolving, especially as so many people are having trouble being housed in the city.”

    The bills introduced by Rivera, who also represents parts of Manhattan, would allow renters to pay a security deposit in six monthly installments, the Wall Street Journal reports.

    Additionally, the measures also would require deposits be returned to tenants within two months of leaving a unit, the publication says.

    A third bill would require brokers to provide an itemized report on what their fee includes.

    “With New York City rental costs at all-time highs, we need real solutions that can save thousands of dollars for tenants,” Rivera said in a statement, the report says.

    However, some are not too keen on the proposed bills. According to the Wall Street Journal, John Banks, the president of the Real Estate Board of New York, said the legislation would interfere with the way many New Yorkers make a living.

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