Housing Explainers

Navigating New York City’s complex housing rules and regulations can feel like an impossible maze between rent stabilization, preferential rents, eviction policies, affordability requirements and more. THE CITY’s housing explainers empower NYC residents to make informed decisions by arming them with simple, straightforward answers to key housing questions. THE CITY is a local, nonpartisan, nonprofit news site for, by and about New Yorkers. From hard-hitting accountability journalism to explainers and guides on how power works across the five boroughs, we report for all New Yorkers.

New research of historic property records estimates the toll of mansion and other space combinations, especially in Manhattan.
Visitors don’t have to worry about getting fined — but there are some pitfalls to watch out for.
COVID spurred many tenants to vacate city apartments, but changing rent laws and rising interest rates are among factors now encouraging people to stay put — with few new apartments available.
There is no legal right to be cool in New York City as there is with heat in the winter. Still, you can push your landlord to fix your AC — or find a public cooling center.
New school holidays and criminal record seals are in. But many proposals related to tenant protections, developer tax breaks and speed limits have gone nowhere.
Officials encouraged New Yorkers to stay home, but there’s no guarantee the air inside is clean. Here’s a guide on keeping your indoor air as pollution-free as possible — including how to build a filter with a box fan.
To help renters make better-informed choices, leases must disclose a property’s propensity to flood and whether it suffered flood damage in the past.
The nine-person board is about to take its preliminary vote, then hear rowdy input from the public. As the city’s affordability crisis worsens, the process is set to be as tense as ever in 2023.
Residents are worried about de facto deregulation in a rapidly gentrifying neighborhood — thanks to limited enforcement of the largely voluntary systems landlords use to register rent-stabilized apartments.
A record of your unit’s rental history from a state housing agency is the best place to start. Here’s how to get it.
Between downpours of rainwater and storm surges from the ocean, the potential for future flooding near the coasts and further inland is high.
We’re here to listen. Email tips@thecity.nyc or visit our tips page for other ways to share.
Toby Stavisky in Queens and Gustavo Rivera in The Bronx have both seen their districts altered dramatically in a new court-ordered political map. But one of them has two apartments to choose from — and already lives in the one that’s outside her district.
The Rent Guidelines Board will hold two public hearings in June before a final vote on rent regulated lease renewals. Here’s how to testify.
Shopkeepers say the COVID recession proved the precarious position of small business owners. Landlords, staggered by empty storefronts, say they can’t afford restrictions. Now, a last-ditch rent regulation bid is headed to the City Council.
The city’s rent board pushed off an increase until next spring, but both one- and two-year leases will see hikes. Neither tenants nor landlords are happy — for different reasons.