The Real Estate Board of New York to The New York State Senate Standing Committees on Housing and Judiciary on S3082, Good Cause Evictions

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The Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY) is the City’s leading real estate trade association representing commercial, residential, and institutional property owners, builders, managers, investors, brokers, salespeople, and other organizations and individuals active in New York City real estate. Thank you to Chairs Kavanagh and Hoylman, and members of the Housing and Judiciary committees for the opportunity to provide testimony on S3082, which would seek to establish a rent control mechanism on nearly all private rental properties statewide.

It is clear we have a housing crisis in New York with increasing rates of homelessness, overcrowded households, and few available affordable options. Coupled with an aging housing stock and a failure to keep pace with job and population growth, constraints on supply have exacerbated these trends. This crisis is dire and complex and requires a multipronged approach of preservation, production, and conversion to the meet the full breadth of need and provide options in existing neighborhoods of opportunity to New Yorkers. Such solutions require close collaboration between state and local governments and the private sector, new tools and ideas, and increased public investment.

REBNY and its members are committed to working closely with our partners in the State Senate to address these complex challenges. Unfortunately, the proposal to impose universal rent control embodied in S3082 is not the solution as it will result in degraded housing quality over time and fewer affordable housing options on the market while failing to address real problems with a lack of code enforcement by local municipalities. S3082 also fails to address the most critical challenge faced by renters today as it does not provide direct assistance to rent burdened New Yorkers, who already pay most of their income to rent, and does nothing to address rental arrears due to loss of jobs and income because of the pandemic.

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