ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Albany’s “good cause” eviction law mandated landlords to state specific reasons for evicting a tenant or increasing the rent. Before the law, Canyon Ryan, Executive Director with the United Tenants of Albany, said the city saw a lot of holdover evictions, hurting month to month renters the most.
“There are some protections for them, but essentially the landlord could say we don’t want you here, could you just leave and give them a 30, 60 or 90 day notice, on to the next,” Ryan said.
According to the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Fair Market Rent for Albany County in 2022 is $991 for a one-bedroom apartment, $1,207 for a two-bedroom, and $1,492 for a three-bedroom. And according to the 2020 U.S. Census, the median gross rent from 2016-2020 was $992.
With the law now overturned, tenants unions are concerned homelessness and rent prices will continue to increase, making it harder for people to afford living in the area.
“This gives landlords the ability to say I’m actually increasing the rent $400 now to match inflation and no one can really afford that,” Ryan said.
Terrance Wamsley, with the The Capital District Association of Rental Property Owners, said the judge’s decision benefits both landlords and tenants; and laws like the good cause eviction law can cause rents to increase because the cost and risk of business goes up.
“Many tenants are being turned away because landlords cannot have sympathy, they cannot make exceptions they cannot use anything but the most strict business practices to occupy a tenant because they run the risk of getting stuck with a problematic tenant,” Wamsley said.
Now, Wamsley expects the rental market to open up with more properties with less risk to landlords.
Ryan said he is working with tenants unions across New York State to push for statewide legislation protecting tenants with a law similar to “good cause,” and rent stabilization in the City of Albany.