Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Too much focus on rent regulation?

From the NY Times:

Of the city’s 1,063,000 rent-regulated units, approximately 41,000 are in the hands of households making $150,000 a year or more. If we hired private investigators to examine the ranks of those households, we would surely find egregious abuses of the system — unmarried lawyers making $350,000 salaries — but we would presumably also find families of five living on less than half of that. (And it hardly bears remarking that $175,000 in New York City is not the same as $175,000 in Jackson, Miss.)

Moreover, according to the city data, approximately 240,000 rent-controlled and rent-stabilized units are occupied by those making $15,000 or less a year.

What a fixation with rent regulation often does is deflect our attention from other policies and economic perversions that keep New York City’s housing from being affordable to a broad stretch of its population. More than half of New Yorkers, whether they are in rent-stabilized apartments or those priced at market rates, spend above 30 percent of their income on rent, according to the Furman Center; 25 percent to 30 percent has long been the guideline. Nearly a third of those in rent-stabilized apartments are paying more than 50 percent in rent.


Anonymous said...

Yep, I see it all the time; five young white people squeezed into a 2br walkup.

This is the direct result of the Potaki/Bruno (jailbird) effort to payback contributions from the landlord lobby.

Goddamn the two of them for what they have done to the citizens of this city.

Fordham 03 said...

Rent regulation ends when the person makes $200,000 and pays $2,000 per month rent. There are no lawyers subsidized by rent regulation making $350,000 a year.

Thanks to the Urstadt Law enacted in 1971, rent controlled apartments get up to 7-1/2% or more increases EVERY year. The same apartment in a building can be $1,000 more under rent control. Many seniors who have lived in their apartments 30 years are on a fixed income and will soon be homeless. There's an erroneous perception of rent control and the $300 apartment.

Where can a person 70+ live in this city? Landlords are working overtime to overturn rent regulation. What will you be left with--millionaires, and foreign owners who will destroy the makeup of this city. Already the neighborhoods have changed. The middle class (what there is left of it) will be pushed out. Fight to keep rent regulation.

Richard Alexander said...

@ Fordham 03 - so why is it then that people who make a decent amount of money but are not rich (Let's say $100k) have to commute from the far reaches of Queens and Brooklyn to work in Manhattan while BUMS live in Penn Station Houses, the public housing in Tribeca and the Seaport, etc. Really? So we pay a huge % in taxes to support people who make $9/hr but have a RIGHT to live in prime parts of Manhattan? I say give them all 1 way bus tickets to South Carolina.