State Landlord-Tenant Laws For New York



  • Not required by law but highly recommended.
  • Generally cannot exceed 1 months rent.
  • Must be returned within 14 days of the tenant moving out unless it’s being used to cover unpaid rent or damages.


  • Rent control is still in effect in New York City and parts of Albany, Erie, Nassau, Rensselaer, Schenectady, and Westchester counties.


  • Under New York state laws, there is no statute but at least 24 hours is recommended.
  • In New York City landlords are required to give 24-hour notice for an inspection, and one-week notice for repairs.
  • The above rule is waived in the case of emergencies.


  • None.


  • Required for tenancies longer than 12 months.
  • Highly recommended to have a rental agreement for all tenancies.


  • Landlords can charge up to $50 or 5% of the monthly rent as a late rent fee
  • Fees must be written into the rental’s lease agreement.
  • There is a rent grace period of five days in New York.
  • Landlords must send a written missed rent notice to their tenants after the state’s grace period is over.


  • None.


  • No statute.
  • Exceptions in New York City.


1. New York Laws on Deposits

Code Sections

Is a security deposit required under New York law?

Landlords are not required by law to collect a security deposit from the tenant though it is recommended. If a security deposit is collected, it should equal no more than one month’s rent.

If the rent is later legally increased the landlord may also request an increase in the deposit to match this increase.

Residents in New York City, and rent-controlled / rent-stabilized apartments throughout the state, should check their local and county laws to determine whether there are local regulations concerning security deposit requirements and limits.

When must a landlord return the deposit by in New York?

In New York, the landlord is required to return either part or all of the security deposit to the tenant, within a reasonable time after the tenant has vacated the premises. New York courts have generally construed a “reasonable time” to be within 14 days after the tenant leaves.

The term “reasonable” however, is interpreted differently throughout the different small claims courts in New York. So check with your local and county laws.

When can a landlord withhold the security deposit in New York?

While the landlord is typically required to return the tenant’s security deposit, the landlord may withhold all or a portion or all of a tenant’s security deposit to cover costs related to damage to the property in excess of normal wear and tear or to cover unpaid rent. The landlord may also withhold all or part of the security deposit for additional breaches of the lease agreement.

When do landlords need to pay interest on security deposits in New York?

Landlords must hold tenants’ security deposits in trusts. If a landlord owns a property that holds six or more tenants, the deposit must be held in an interest-bearing account by a banking organization. The account must earn interest at a rate that is equivalent to the interest rate for similar deposits in the same geographic area.

Tenants are entitled to the majority of the interest that their security deposit earns during tenancy, yet, a landlord may collect a 1% administration fee for handling the deposit.

Can security deposits be commingled with other assets in New York?

Any commingling of the security deposit with the landlord’s personal funds is prohibited. NY GOL §§ 7-103(1))


Pet Deposits and Additional Fees: No Statute

Record Keeping of Deposit Withholdings: If a landlord puts the security deposit in a bank, the landlord is required to disclose the name and address of that financial institution, and the amount of the security deposit. NY GOL §§ 7-103 to 7-108.

Receipt of Deposit: After a security deposit has been placed into a financial institution, the landlord must notify the tenant in writing. NY GOL §§ 7-103 to 7-108.

Transfer of Property Ownership: Deposit must be transferred within five days of property transfer. The landlord must notify the tenant by registered or certified mail of the name and address of the new owner. NY GOL §§ 7-105.


2. New York Rental Agreement Laws

Lease Agreements

Are rental agreements legally required in New York?

Rental agreements are required for tenancies that are 12 months or longer in New York. Even though lease terms that are less than 12 months are not required to be in writing, it is highly encouraged to have a written rental agreement.

Finally, in the state of New York, the landlord is required to provide the tenant with a copy of the rental agreement 30 days after the agreement has been finalized.

What are the general lease provisions in New York?

Leases must use words with common and everyday meanings and must be clear and coherent. Sections of leases must be appropriately captioned and the print must be large enough to be read easily. (General Obligations Law § 5-702; NY C.P.L.R. § 4544.)

Generally, both the owner and lessee are required to include their name on the rental agreement, along with at least the following details:

  • the conditions of occupancy,
  • the description of the leased premises,
  • the term of the lease,
  • a clear description of the rental space,
  • who is liable for utility expenses,
  • the amount of rent,
  • the date rent is due,
  • penalties for late rent payments,
  • if any, landlord’s responsibilities, tenant’s responsibilities,
  • provisions regarding painting,
  • and whether pets are allowed.

Even though late fees are not a legal requirement according to the law of New York, it is recommended to include a late fee rule.

The following lease provisions are not allowed :

  • Exempting landlords from liability for injuries to persons or property caused by the landlord’s negligence, or that of the landlord’s employees or agents (General Obligations Law § 5-321);
  • Waiving the tenant’s right to a jury trial in any lawsuit brought by either of the parties against the other for personal injury or property damage (Real Property Law§ 259-c);
  • Requiring tenants to pledge their household furniture as security for rent (Real Property Law § 231);
  • Exempting landlords from mitigating the damages of a tenant vacating the premises before the lease expires (Real Property Law § 227-e);
  • Waiving the Warranty of Habitability (Real Property Law § 235-b); and
  • Restricting a tenant from living with their immediate family members and/or one additional occupant and the occupant’s dependent children (Real Property Law § 235-f ).

If a lease states that the landlord may recover attorney’s fees and costs incurred, a tenant automatically has a reciprocal right to recover those fees as well (Real Property Law § 234).

If the court finds a lease or any lease clause to have been unconscionable at the time it was made, the court may refuse to enforce the lease or the clause in question (Real Property Law § 235-c).

What are the rental agreement notice requirements in New York?

A month-to-month tenancy in New York may be terminated by either party by giving at least one month’s notice before the expiration of the tenancy. On the other hand, because a fixed lease term expires at the end of the term, no notice is needed.

Are there any specific required lease renewal provisions in New York?

The requirement of a lease renewal provision in the rental agreement depends on whether the premise is rent-stabilized. See the section on rent control and rent stabilization.

Rent stabilization means the landlord can only increase your rent by a certain percentage every year, as determined by the Rent Guidelines Board in New York. Tenants in rent-stabilized apartments are entitled to lease renewals on the same terms and conditions as the original lease.

Renewal Of Lease For Non-Regulated Apartment: A tenant may only renew the lease with the consent of the landlord and may be subject to eviction at the end of the lease term. However, a lease may contain an automatic renewal clause. NY GOL § 5-905.

Month to Month Tenants: A landlord may raise the rent of a month-to-month tenant with the consent of the tenant. If the tenant does not consent, however, the landlord can terminate the tenancy by giving appropriate notice. NY RPL § 232-a and § 232-b.

Under what circumstances can a tenant legally break the terms of the lease early in New York?

According to the laws of New York, there are certain situations where the tenant can legally break the terms of the lease. Those situations include:

Legal Reasons For A Tenant To Break Their Lease Early

The following are the legally justified reasons why your tenant could break their lease early:

  • The landlord does not provide habitable housing under local and state housing codes. (N.Y. Real Prop. Law § 235-b)
  • The landlord invades/ violates the privacy of the tenant or otherwise harasses the tenant.
  • Following through with an early termination clause.
  • Moving to senior citizen housing. (N.Y. Real Prop. Law § 227-a)
  • Being subject to domestic violence. (Domestic Violence Victim’s Pamphlet) (N.Y. Real Prop. Law § 227-c)
  • Active military duty as part of the uniformed services. (War and National Defense Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, 50 App. U.S.C.A. § § 501 and following.)
  • Reaching a mutual understanding with you without intervention.

Read more here.

Other Rental Agreement Laws in New York

Apartment Sharing: It is unlawful for a landlord to restrict the occupancy of an apartment to the named tenant in the lease or to that tenant and immediate family. Landlords may limit the total number of people living in an apartment to comply with legal overcrowding standards. NY RPL § 235-f.

The landlord may also request all occupants over the age of 18 to complete a rental application form and conduct a tenant background check.

Automatic Lease Renewal: Landlord must give the tenant advance notice of the existence of an auto-renewal clause between 15 and 30 days before the tenant is required to notify the landlord of an intention not to renew the lease. (source)

Tenant Allowed to Withhold Rent for Failure to Provide Essential Services (Water, Heat, etc.): Yes (N.Y. RPL §§ 235-a)

Tenant Allowed to Repair and Deduct Rent: Yes, under some circumstances. (N.Y. RPL §§ 235-b)


3. Rent Control and Rent Stabilization

Rent control

Rent control is still in effect in New York City and parts of Albany, Erie, Nassau, Rensselaer, Schenectady, and Westchester counties. Rent control applies to apartments built prior to 1947 where the tenant has been living continuously since July 1, 1971.

  • When the tenant moves out, the unit will become rent-stabilized if it’s in a building with more than six units.
  • The rent can be raised by 7.5% every two years.
  • The rent cannot exceed a Maximum Base Rent, which is determined per unit and covers the landlord’s maintenance costs.
  • Rent-controlled tenants can pass their apartment to a family member when they die if the family member had been living in the apartment for at least two years.

The goal of rent control is to act as a price ceiling to stop increasing rent rates from pricing people out of the market.

Rent stabilization

Applies to apartments built prior to 1974 that have more than six units. Newer buildings can voluntarily participate in rent stabilization in exchange for tax exemptions.

The maximum rent increase per year for one- and two-year leases is set by the Rent Guidelines Board, which takes into account real estate costs as well as the current cost of living. For the last ten years, the increases have been between 0% and 4.5% per year.

When you live in a rent-stabilized unit, your landlord is obligated to add your spouse’s name to the lease. You are allowed to have one roommate who is not related to you, but that person has no right to take over your lease if you move out.

The rent stabilized unit does have to be your primary residence. You can sublet your apartment under certain circumstances, but not for more than two out of any four years.

2019 Changes to NYC’s rent stabilization laws

In 2019 there was an overhaul of New York city’s rent control laws, closing several exploitable loopholes. Previously, if any of the following conditions apply, the unit would cease to be rent stabilized:

  • The landlord renovated the apartment
  • The landlord converted the apartment to a condo
  • The landlord took over the apartment for his or her own use
  • The rent reached a certain threshold ($2,775 in 2019)
  • The tenant earned a certain income ($200,000 in 2019)
  • The Housing Stability and

Tenant Protection Act of 2019 closed these and other loopholes.

Before the 2019 legislation, landlords also could raise the rent up to the market rate between tenants. Now, when a tenant vacates, the rent increase is limited to 20 percent.


4. Notices, Entry, and Evictions

Notice To Enter

As a landlord, you will need to provide the tenant with “reasonable notice” in writing of your intent to enter for reasons such as inspections or repairs. New York state does not stipulate what a “reasonable time” is under these circumstances.

But at least 24 hours is recommended and it does stipulate that reasonable times to enter are interpreted as between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, excluding holidays.

Additionally, when giving your tenant a notice to enter you should include the reason for your requested access.

The rules for New York City are different. “Reasonable notice” in New York city is deemed to be 24-hour notice for an inspection, and one-week notice for repairs.

An exception exists when the landlord must enter the home or apartment in response to an emergency. Emergencies could include a fire or water leak. Under these circumstances, New York courts hold that it is reasonable and in both party’s best interests to allow the landlord to respond immediately to avoid further property damage. Additionally, a landlord can enter the home with less than 24 hours notice or no notice at all if the tenant invites the landlord to enter.

Eviction Notices and Eviction Laws in New York

A tenant with a lease is protected from eviction during the lease period so long as the tenant does not violate any substantial provision of the lease or any local housing laws or codes. For both regulated and unregulated apartments, landlords must give formal notice of their intention to obtain legal possession of the apartment. If the tenant does not vacate the premises by the date specified in the notice, the landlord may commence eviction proceedings.

You can read more about the valid reasons for initiating an eviction here: NY RPA § 711.

Termination Of A Tenancy At Will Or By Sufferance

Real Property Law – RPP § 228

A tenancy at will or by sufferance, however, created, may be terminated by a written notice of not less than thirty days given by or on behalf of the landlord, to the tenant, requiring them to remove from the premises.

The notice must be served by delivering to the tenant or current occupant or by affixing to the property in a conspicuous place convenient for reading.

If, at the expiration of thirty days the tenant has still not vacated the landlord can proceed with eviction proceedings as laid down by law.

A tenancy by will is a tenancy that is not a periodic tenancy nor for a fixed term, but which lasts for so long as both parties desire.

A tenancy at sufferance is an agreement in which a property renter is legally permitted to live on a property after a lease term has expired but before the landlord demands the tenant vacate the property. If a tenancy at sufferance occurs, the original lease conditions must be met including the payment of any rents.

Other Required Notices

Terminating a Fixed-Term Tenancy

No notice is needed to terminate a lease with a definite term, outside of New York City. (N.Y. RPL §§ 232-b)

Notice To Raise the Rent

If the landlord wants to raise the rent by 5% or more or not renew the lease, they must let the tenant know further in advance:

  • If the tenant has occupied the unit for less than one year and does not have a lease term of at least one year, the landlord must give at least thirty days’ notice.
  • If the tenant has occupied the unit for more than one year but less than two years, or has a lease term of at least one year but less than two years, the landlord must give at least sixty days’ notice.
  • If the tenant has occupied the unit for more than two years or has a lease term of at least two years, the landlord must give at least ninety days’ notice.

If the landlord fails to give proper notice, the tenancy continues under the existing lease or rental agreement. The required notice period must pass before the rent increase or a non-renewal of tenancy takes effect. These rules apply despite what the lease or rental agreement says.

Termination of Month-to-Month Tenancy

  • Notice to terminate a month-to-month lease. One month if outside New York City (N.Y. RPL §§ 232-b). If in New York City, 30 days notice is required (N.Y. RPL §§ 232-a).

Notice To Terminate Lease Due To Lease Violation

Notice of Termination of Lease for Nonpayment: 10 days to Remedy or Quit (N.Y. RPL §§ 751(1)).

Notice of Termination for Lease Violation: 10 days to Remedy or Quit (N.Y. RPL §§ 753(4)).


5. New York Oft Cited Laws

Below you will find references to areas of the New York rules and regulations that govern rental properties and issues related to landlord-tenant law.

(N.Y. Real Prop. Law – Article 7 §§ 220 to 238)

  • N.Y. RPP §223-B. Retaliation by a landlord against a tenant. Under specific circumstances, the landlord may not retaliate against the tenant. If the landlord is deemed to have acted in retaliation, the tenant has certain rights.
  • N.Y. RPP §227-A. Senior Citizen Early Lease Termination. Tenants or their spouses living with them, who are sixty-two years or older, or who will attain such age during the term of their lease, are entitled to terminate their leases if they relocate to an adult care facility, a residential health care facility, subsidized low-income housing, or other senior citizen housing.
  • N.Y. RPP §227-C. Termination of a residential lease by victims of domestic violence. Victims of domestic violence may terminate their lease early if they are able to demonstrate that there continues to be a substantial risk of physical or emotional harm to the tenant or the tenant’s child.
  • N.Y. RPP §231-A. Sprinkler system notice in residential agreements. Every residential lease shall provide conspicuous notice in a bold font type as to the existence or non-existence of a maintained and operative sprinkler system in the leased premises.
  • N.Y. RPP §232-A. Notice to terminate monthly tenancy or tenancy from month-to-month in the city of New York. For a month-to-month tenancy, tenant must provide the landlord with at least 30 days’ notice if they wish to terminate the lease agreement.
  • N.Y. RPP. §235-A. Tenant Allowed to Withhold Rent for Failure to Provide Essential Services. Tenant is allowed to withhold rent if landlord fails to provide essential services.
  • N.Y. RPP. §235-B. Tenant Allowed to Repair and Deduct Rent. Tenant has the right to withhold rent or repair and deduct rent, when the landlord fails to remedy or repair.
  • N.Y. RPP. §235-E. Receipt of Rent. Landlord is required to provide tenant with receipt of rent after the rental agreement has been entered into.
  • N.Y. RPP. §235-G. Electric Billing or Payment of Rent. The landlord cannot require the tenant to use an electronic billing or payment system as the only method for the payment of rent.

N.Y. Real Property Article 14

Property Condition Disclosure in the Sale of Residential Property

  • NYY RPP. §462. Property Condition Disclosure Statement. Landlord has a duty to the tenant to disclose certain conditions regarding the property.
  • NYY RPP. §465. Remedy. Buyer has certain remedies where the seller fails to perform the duty prescribed in this article to deliver a disclosure statement prior to the signing by the buyer of a binding contract of sale.

New York City Administrative Code

  • NYC Admin. Code § 27-2011. Landlord’s Duty to Repair. Landlord has a duty to repair when the tenant has complained or filed a cause for repair against the landlord.
  • NYC Admin. Code § 27-2045. Smoke Detectors. Landlord has a duty to provide working smoke detectors.
  • NYC Admin. Code 27-§ 2046.1. Carbon Monoxide Detectors. Landlord is required to provide functioning carbon monoxide detectors.
  • NYC Admin. Code § 27-2040. Entrance Door Locks and Intercoms. Landlord is required to provide automatic self-closing and self-locking doors at all entrances for certain dwellings.
  • NYC Admin. Code § 27-2042. Elevator Mirrors. Landlord is obligated to provide elevator mirrors on the leased premises.
  • NYC Admin. Code § 27-2043. Individual locks, peepholes, and mailboxes. Landlord must provide a peephole in the entrance door of each apartment and also must install a chain-door guard on the entrance door to each apartment.
  • NYC Admin. Code § 27-2029. Heating Season. Landlord has a duty to provide heat of 68° F, between Oct. 1 and May 31, (6 a.m. and 10 p.m.) when the temperature outside is below 55° F and 55° F between 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m. when the temperature outside is below 40° F.

General Obligations Law

  • N.Y. GOL § 5-702: Lease Provisions. Leases must use words with common and everyday meanings and must be clear and coherent. Sections of leases must be appropriately captioned and the print must be large enough to be read easily.
  • N.Y. GOL §§ 7-103(1). Separate Security Deposit Bank Account. Landlord is required to store the tenant’s security deposit in a separate bank account and not commingle the deposit with their own personal funds.
  • N.Y. GOL §§ 7-103(2). Receipt of Deposit. Landlord has a duty to provide the tenant with a receipt, indicating the name and address of the banking institution where the funds have been deposited and the amount deposited.
  • N.Y. GOL §§ 7-103(2-a): Security Deposit Interest. If the rental property contains 6 or more family dwellings, the landlord is required to keep the deposit in a New York interest-bearing bank account and collect interest on behalf of the tenant.
  • N.Y. GOL §§ 7-105. Transfer of Property Ownership. When there has been a transfer of ownership in the property, the landlord must notify the tenant, either by registered or certified mail, including the name and address of the new owner.

Multiple Dwelling Law

This statute highlights New York rules and regulations pertaining to multiple dwelling units.

  • N.Y. MDL §§ 75. Hot Water. Landlords must provide all tenants of multiple dwellings with both hot and cold water. Hot water must register at or above a constant temperature of 120 degrees at the tap. If a tub or shower is equipped with an anti-scald valve that prevents the hot water temperature from exceeding 120 degrees, the minimum hot water temperature for that tub or shower is 110 degrees.


6. New York Disclosures and Miscellaneous Notes:

Lead paint

Landlords in New York State are not required to test for lead ain’t in their properties, nor are they required to allow prospective tenants to do so. However, under Federal law, landlords are required to provide a pamphlet informing occupants about lead. Landlords in New York must also send an annual lead notice between January 1st-15th to all tenants in pre-1960 multiple dwellings or dwellings constructed between 1960-1978 where lead-based paint is known to exist.

Structural Damage/Mold

The landlord is required to disclose any structural damage, including but not limited to water, fire, smoke, or insect damage and the condition of the roof, and mold.

Utility Disclosure

Landlords are required to disclose certain mechanical services and utilities, including the water source and quality, location of sewers and drainage systems, and any presence of flooding. Such notice shall also be provided by the seller prior to accepting a purchase offer.

Sex Offender Disclosure

Land Sex Offender Registration Act of 1995 was enacted to protect communities by requiring sex offenders to register with the state and providing information to the public about certain sex offenders living in their communities.

The tenant is entitled to this information if requested.

Bed Bug Disclosure

According to the NYC Bed Bug Disclosure Act, landlords must notify prospective tenants in writing about any bed bug infestations that have occurred in their building in the past year.

Foreclosure Disclosure

New York requires the foreclosing party to notify tenants of an impending foreclosure through a notice delivered by both certified and first-class mail.

Copy of Lease

A copy of the rental agreement must be provided to the tenant


The landlord may not terminate or refuse to renew a lease to a tenant who has filed an official complaint to a Government Authority, been involved in a tenant’s organization, or exercised a legal right.

Courts will assume “retaliation” by the landlord if negative action is taken on the tenant within six months after any of the prior tenant actions. NY RPL §§ 223-b.

A landlord who seeks to enforce such a fee, penalty, or charge against a tenant because such tenant files a bona fide complaint with a building code officer regarding the condition shall be liable to the tenant for triple the amount of such fee, penalty, or charge. NY RPL §§ 223-b(5a).


7. New York City Landlord and Tenant Law Resources

For the most part, the rules and regulations in New York City are the same as at the state level there are a few distinct differences. These differences include notice termination of lease rent control and stabilization and a few variations of the eviction rules.

Termination of Month-to-Month Tenancy

In New York City, unless the property is protected by some form of rent regulation like rent stabilization or rent control, if the tenant is on a month-to-month rolling tenancy it can be terminated by either party with as little as 1 month or 30 – 90 days notice.

The landlord may legally be allowed to provide less notice if there has been a breach of the lease contract such as failure to pay rent or if the tenant has violated basic responsibilities imposed by law such as stealing drugs within the rental property.

Rent Control & Rent Stabilization

We’ve already talked about rent control and rent stabilization however it’s important to note that rent control limits within the city of New York limit the amount that a property owner can charge for an apartment and the amount in which they can raise the rent.

There are no statewide regulations however rent control regulations do affect various other cities and counties around New York State – see the section above on rent control and rent stabilization.

In New York City, apartments are generally under rent stabilization if they are in buildings:

  • Of six or more units built between February 1, 1947, and December 31, 1973.
  • Built before February 1, 1947, with tenants who moved in after June 30, 1971.
  • With three or more apartments constructed or extensively renovated.

Landlords with NYC rent-stabilized units must provide tenants written notice of a lease renewal (by mail or personal delivery) between 90-150 days before the renewal.

Special Types of Housing

In New York City, several categories of special housing arrangements exist:

Manufactured and mobile home parks’ owners and tenants are governed by Real Property Law § 233 (“Mobile Homeowner’s Bill of Rights”). The Division of Housing and Community Renewal enforces compliance with this law.

New York City loft owners and tenants are governed by Multiple Dwelling Law, Article 7-C, enforced by the New York City Loft Board. The loft board ensures these residential dwellings are used in a safe and legal manner.

New York City residential hotel owners and tenants are governed by the rent stabilization law, enforced by the DHCR (Division of Housing and Community Renewal).

Senior Citizen Exemption

In New York City, senior citizens benefit from additional protections. A senior citizen may only be affected if the tenant is provided with an equivalent or superior apartment at the same or lower rent in a nearby area.

Notice to Enter for Repair

Under New York state laws there are no required notice periods that landlords have to give before entering premises for maintenance or repairs emergencies or prospective showings. New York City is different according to the New York Attorney General’s office in New York City reasonable notice has is interpreted as at least 24-hour notice for an inspection and one week notice for repairs. There are no legal notice requirements in emergencies or if the tenant invites the landlord into the property.

Eviction Rules

In New York City if a landlord uses illegal methods to remove a tenant such as cutting off water and power or forcibly evicting them they are subject to both criminal and civil penalties. Additionally, the tenant may also be entitled to restored occupancy.

Another thing to note when it comes to eviction rules in New York City is the eviction limitations regarding rent-stabilized apartments and the eviction protections for senior citizens and disabled persons.

Carbon Monoxide Requirements

There are additional carbon monoxide requirements in New York City that are not stipulated for the state while in New York City landlords of multiple dwellings including condos cooperatives apartment buildings and one and two Family Homes must provide and install a carbon monoxide detector within 15 feet of every primary entranceway of a sleeping room.


8. New York Landlord and Tenant Law Resources

Below you’ll find helpful New York landlord-tenant law resources:

This article is designed to convey information, and not to provide legal advice. You should not consider any information in this article to be legal advice. Readers should consider obtaining specific legal advice from an attorney for any decision or course of action contemplated.