Brooklyn property owners warn tenants against rent law reforms

Posted: Updated:
BAY RIDGE -

Property owners in Brooklyn are concerned over possible reforms to tenant protection laws.

The laws governing New York's rent-stabilized apartments will expire in a month and many are pushing for major changes.

Some of these revisions would end vacancy decontrol and the vacancy bonus. Another idea is to eliminate rent hikes caused by major capital improvements.

While tenants' rights advocates say these changes will help tenants and ultimately keep more New Yorkers in their homes, property owners say it will do more harm than good.

"It's frustrating when the government is trying to tell us how to run our business because they're constricting the way we improve our buildings," says Chris Athineos, who owns several properties in the city. He suggests if the state restricts rent increases, then property owners should be getting tax breaks so they are able to maintain their buildings.

Sen. Zellnor Myrie tells News 12 this is not just a housing crisis, but also a moral crisis with many owners charging high rents and making record profits while their tenants continue to struggle. That's why he says the reforms are necessary to keep the community safe and affordable.

 

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