Tenants' Rights and Responsibilities

In New York City, tenants have many rights relating to the safety and quality of their housing. Tenants should expect to live in safe, well-maintained buildings that are free from vermin, leaks, and hazardous conditions. Laws protect tenants from harassment and discrimination. Tenants have responsibilities to their building owners and other tenants - including not damaging the building, and responding to annual owner inquiries related to window guards, lead-based paint, and to maintain smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Visit our Tenants' Rights FAQ page for more information. 

New Tenant Protection Laws

Changes to New York State rent laws, recently passed by lawmakers in Albany, make it harder for landlords to evict all tenants. In addition, the new rent laws strengthened protections for New Yorkers living in rent stabilized apartments. These laws are enforced by the State's Division of Homes and Community Renewal (DHCR). DHCR is the State's affordable housing agency, with a mission to build, preserve, and protect affordable housing and increase home ownership throughout New York State.

As of June 14, 2019, there are new laws protecting tenants in New York State. The new rent laws are permanent unless the legislature amends, repeals, or terminates them. The rent stabilization and control laws, as well as some laws that impact all tenants, are enforced by New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR). Learn more about the new tenant protection laws from the NYC Mayor's Office to Protect Tenants.

The ABC's of Housing

ABCs of Housing cover page

The ABC's of Housing is HPD's guide to housing rules and regulations for owners and tenants.

Owners and tenants have legal responsibilities to each other. HPD is one of many city and state agencies that enforce those responsibilities. This booklet is designed to help owners and tenants gain an understanding of the rules and regulations affecting housing, and to provide information about how to receive assistance.

Inside the guide you will find information about owners' and tenants' rights and responsibilities, staying in your apartment safely, resources for new affordable housing or rental assistance, and useful contact information for other housing related issues.

The ABC's of Housing is also available in the following languages:

Arabic | Bengali | Chinese | French | Haitian Creole | Korean | Polish | Russian | Spanish | Urdu


Is Your Neighborhood Getting Too Expensive?

Is Your Neighborhood Getting Too Expensive? is a fold-out poster in English and Spanish, and in English and Chinese, that helps all tenants, including rent stabilized tenants, know and claim their rights.

Developed in collaboration with the Center for Urban Pedagogy (CUP), the poster provides information on how to challenge harassment and other illegal practices, how to find tenant resources, as well as new policies and tools to combat harassment and discrimination in housing.

See CUP's website for more information about the project.

To obtain a copy of the poster, visit an HPD Borough Service Center.