One of the grounds upon which an owner may end a rent regulated tenancy (rent controlled or rent stabilized) is where the owner intends to demolish the building. However, in such situations, the owner must first obtain the approval of The Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR).
The owner is required to file Form RA-54, "Owner's Application for Order Granting Approval to Refuse Renewal of Lease and/or to Proceed for Eviction" with DHCR.
In New York City, if the building contains rent controlled tenants, before filing Form RA-54, the owner must also file with DHCR and serve the rent controlled tenants with Form RC-50 "Report and Certification To Alter or Demolish Occupied Housing Accommodations." The RC-50 needs to be filed prior to the submission of plans to the New York City Department of Buildings.
An RA-54 application will be rejected and not docketed or accepted for filing, unless it contains the following documents:
Plans that have been reviewed and approved by the New York City Department of Buildings or other appropriate government agency outside of New York City.
Evidence of financial ability to complete the project, such as a Letter of Intent or a Commitment Letter from a financial institution, or other evidence that DHCR determines to be appropriate.
Once the RA-54 application is accepted for filing, DHCR will:
During the processing of the case:
If the owner's RA-54 application is granted, the DHCR Order will contain terms relating to relocation stipends, moving expenses, and will give the tenant a reasonable amount of time to vacate the apartment.
If the owner's application is denied or withdrawn, the DHCR Order will direct the owner to offer the tenants prospective lease renewals.
Orders can be appealed within 35 days. The filing of the appeal (PAR) stays (freezes) the order.
Warrants of eviction must be obtained from a court of competent jurisdiction.
This Fact Sheet is a summary of this topic. For a detailed discussion, please refer to:
For more information or assistance, call the DHCR Rent InfoLine, or visit your Borough or County Rent Office.
Last updated on 10/25/2012