Laws protect tenants from rising rent

Rent is rising for many people in the Capital Region. If you are one of them, then you need to know what protections you have as a tenant.

Unfortunately, there is not a lot of protection for tenants in Upstate New York. However, that could change.

Your best defense right now is knowing when you, as a tenant, should receive a notice that your rent will go up. United Tenants of Albany said if you have lived at a place for less than a year, you need to receive at least a 30-day notice from your property owner that your rent will go up.

If you have been there for a year to two years, it is 60 days. For more than two years, you should get a 90-day notice. This has to be a written notice from your landlord.

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"Whatever the economy is doing, tenants are generally being victimized whether or not it’s reasonable for them to deal with these increases," Canyon Ryan, Executive Director of United Tenants of Albany.

State lawmakers have proposed the Good Cause Eviction Bill in the Capital Region.

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Ryan said part of the bill would make sure a landlord can’t drastically raise rent without having a valid reason. That could be they made significant repairs to the buildings and added some commodities, like a pool.

Currently, the only places in Upstate New York that have good cause is Albany proper and in Hudson. Good cause would also mean a landlord can’t increase rent more than 5% within one calendar year. If a landlord does that, the tenant has the right to take a landlord to court.

As for evictions, the bill would ensure evictions are appropriate. You can’t get kicked out just because they don’t like you, even if you’ve consistently been paying rent.

"It’s even more essential now than it was last year because the eviction moratorium is up. Your rent can get increased $600 for no reason, essentially, other than the landlord wants more money," Ryan said.

If you feel your rent is unfairly increasing, you can contact United Tenants of Albany for help.