De Blasio Appoints New Guidelines Board: Will NYC's Next Freeze Be Rent?

New York City renters are hoping that Mayor de Blasio will follow through with his campaign promise of a renting freeze. The NYC Mayor will be appointing the nine members that make up the Rent Guidelines Board (RGB). This board decides how much regulated rents will increase per year.

De Blasio, has a strong position on creating more affordable housing within NYC. Supporting plans such as mandating inclusionary zoning, and refurbishing many existing affordable units that have long needed repairs. A rent freeze would be the next step in fulfilling his affordable housing promises. Especially at a time when millions of New Yorkers are going to soon be unable to afford their rents if there is another percentage increase, to their already exorbitant rent amounts.

This would be a historical moment in the life of the RGB as, in their 45-year span of controlling rent increases, they have never approved a renters freeze before.

Landlords of course, are hoping that de Blasio was just giving New Yorkers a reason to vote and that his plans to have a zero-increase on rent will not materialize. Tenants opposing their current pay-rates for rent in NYC have a fierce opinion swaying for the renters freeze, as they calculate that landlords are not telling the truth about costs to maintain their apartment buildings.

The RGB in turn is supposed to act as the mediator between these two sides. The board is comprised of two landlord representatives, two tenant representatives, and five members of the general public that have experience in housing, economics, and finance, according to the NY Times.

Right now de Blasio has the opportunity to fill five of the nine seats on the board. He will be able to fill the other four seats come December. The board is currently preparing their annual decision on rent increases. We can expect that de Blasio will have chosen his five members this month so they can participate in the rent increase decision, although the final vote will be in June.