A New York rental agreement is a legal contract between a landlord overseeing a rental property and a tenant who wishes to use it. New York landlord-tenant law governs these agreements; rental terms must be within the limits allowed by law.
New York Rental Agreement Types
A New York roommate agreement is a legal contract between two or more people (“co-tenants”) who share a rental property according to rules they set, including for things like splitting the rent. This agreement binds the co-tenants living together, and doesn’t include the landlord.
Common Rental Agreements in New York
- New York Residential Lease Agreement– The New York Multiple Listing Network provides this lease template for residential use. It details numerous rules and procedures, including the tenant’s responsibility for the condition of the rental unit.
- New York Renewal Lease Form – This two-section form is for use by rent stabilized units in New York. Section A indicates the rental price, costs and fees, and the landlord’s offer to the tenant to renew. Section B indicates whether the tenant accepts or declines the landlord’s offer.
- The New York City Bar Office Lease – The New York City Bar provides this template for use in commercial office rentals.It details numerous rules and procedures, including exhibits such as landlord regulations, provisions for a standby letter of credit, etc.
- The New York City Bar Retail Lease – The New York City Bar provides this form, for rental of commercial retail spaces. It outlines New York’s property rules and procedures, and details elements like signage, shared common areas, and subletting policies.
New York Required Lease Disclosures
- Operative Fire Sprinkler System Notice (required for all leases) – All New York lease agreements must include a notice, written in bold-face font, outlining the presence and maintenance history of sprinkler systems on the property.
- Security Deposit Holdings (required for some leases) – New York landlords must provide a written disclosure of how any security deposit funds will be kept while the tenant is renting the property. This disclosure must include the name of the holding institution, the location, and the sum of the holding. It may also include the account number.
- Bed Bug Disclosure (required for some leases) – New York City lease agreements must include a disclosure of bed bug infestation history for the unit and the building in which it’s located.
- Lead-Based Paint Disclosure (required for some leases) – Any New York rental property built before 1978 must include a lead-based paint disclosure, EPA pamphlet, and notice of any existing lead hazards.
To learn more about required disclosures in New York, click here.
New York Landlord Tenant Laws
- Warranty of Habitability – New York landlords must provide habitable rental property, which includes running water, a mailbox, smoke/carbon monoxide detectors, and more. Landlords must also make repairs in a “reasonable” amount of time after notice from the tenant. A tenant might sue a noncompliant landlord, or repair and deduct.
- Evictions – New York landlords may evict tenants for a number of reasons such as failure to pay rent, a lease violation, or illegal acts. Depending on the type of eviction, a landlords must provide notice to pay, comply or quit before filing. Most evictions in New York take over a month.
- Security Deposits – Security deposits in New York can be a maximum of one month’s rent. Any unused portion of a security deposit must be returned within 14 days after the tenant moves out.
- Lease Termination – Month-to-month New York tenants can terminate their leases by providing one month of advance notice. A tenant on a fixed-term lease can terminate it early by showing they fall under a legal exception, such as active military duty, domestic violence/stalking, landlord harassment, unit uninhabitability, advanced age/health issues, etc.
- Rent Increases and Fees – New York has rent control for some property (dwellings built prior to February 1, 1947, occupied by the tenant/family since July 1, 1971). The law requires advance notice when the rent will increase by 5% or more. The notice period depends on how long the tenant has occupied the unit. Late fees are capped at $50 or 5% of the monthly rent (whichever is less). Bounced check fees are capped at$20.
- Landlord Entry – Tenants must give the landlord access to the property for necessary repairs. Outside of emergency situations, the landlord must give “reasonable” advance notice before entry.
- Settling Legal Disputes – New York landlords and tenants can file claims in either state small claims court or a local court. The maximum value of the controversy for small claims ranges from $10,000 in New York City, to $3,000 in town and village courts. Eviction cases are limited to hearings in state civil courts.
To learn more about landlord tenant laws in New York, click here.