Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Conversion & Demolition

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Building demolition - What are tenant relocation benefits?

Rent regulated tenants should consult HCR Fact Sheet #11 on Demolition for information. Unregulated tenants are not generally entitled to any benefits.

My landlord has illegally converted the basement into apartments. What can be done about it?

An illegal conversion is an alteration or modification of an existing building to create an additional housing unit without first obtaining approval from the NYC Department of Buildings (DOB). To find out more, and/or to file a complaint, consult DOB on Illegal Conversions

If my stabilized building was converted from 6 to 5 units - can I still get a renewal lease?

In general, if the owner converts a rent regulated building into one with five or fewer units, the tenants in occupancy remain under rent regulation. For more information, contact HCR .

My landlord is demolishing my building - what are my rights?

Here are two scenarios:

  • City Requires Demolition: If this is the case you will have to move. Before demolition, the City will issue a vacate order. Instructions will be included on the order indicating which agency to contact for questions. If you have any questions about your continuing rights following the vacate order, we suggest you get legal advice, which can be obtained by visiting our Legal Assistance page. You also may have rights to relocate back in the building, if it is to be repaired or rebuilt.

  • Owner is seeking demolition to rebuild: The law does not allow an owner of a rent regulated building to simply demolish the building and throw the tenants out. The owner must follow the steps mandated by the NY State Division of Housing and Community Renewal, the state agency that administers the rent laws. These steps include notification procedures and relocation assistance. See the first question in this section for further information.