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For Immediate Release: 9/13/2019

THE NEW YORK STATE DEPARTMENT OF STATE ISSUES GUIDANCE FOR REAL ESTATE PROFESSIONALS CONCERNING THE STATEWIDE SECURITY  AND TENANT PROTECTION ACT OF 2019.

The Act is a Sweeping and Comprehensive Collection of New Provisions that Strengthen Tenant Protections for all New Yorkers.

New York State Secretary of State Rossana Rosado announced today that the Department of State's Division of Licensing has issued guidance for Real Estate Professionals concerning the Statewide Security and Tenant Protection Act of 2019 (Act).

"The new laws are a broad collection of provisions that increase tenant protections for all New Yorkers," said Secretary Rosado. "The Guidance will help the real estate industry and other interested parties understand the new law and apply it correctly for the benefit of current and prospective tenants."

A copy of the Guidance and the Department's letter to the real estate industry announcing the Guidance can be found here and here.

The Guidance explains the proper application of a number of provisions found in the Act, including one that prohibits a landlord, lessor, sub-lessor or grantor from collecting an application fee greater than $20.00. As clarified in the Guidance, the $20.00 limitation also applies to licensed real estate brokers and salespeople who are acting as an agent of a landlord, lessor, sub-lessor or grantor, and that a licensed agent that collects a fee greater than $20.00 or fails to advise the landlord that such fees are prohibited may be subject to discipline by the Department. The Guidance further advises that if a prohibited fee is collected and the property is subject to rent regulation, a tenant may also seek appropriate relief through HCR.

The Guidance also identifies other provisions of the Act that will now govern the activities of licensed real estate brokers and agents, such as a prohibition against refusals to rent based on tenant's history or pending landlord-tenant action, a prohibition against fees for rent payments made within the first five days following a due date, and a requirement that landlords return security deposits within 14 days.

For more information about the Guidance or the Act, licensed brokers and agents with questions may contact Department at: licensing@dos.ny.gov or contact 518-474-4429. Call Center Representatives are available from 8:30am to 4:30pm Monday through Friday except on Legal Holidays.

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