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The COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Pandemic and What You Should Know

 

 

The ongoing COVID-19 crisis has changed every day life as we know it. Please be advised that in accordance with the New York State on Pause executive order, RSA’s physical office will remain closed until at least May 15, 2020. Most of our staff members are working remotely and continue to be here for our members’ needs. 

 

If you know the direct number to the particular RSA staff member that you would like to speak to, please dial that number rather than the general RSA number. Phone calls are being forwarded to RSA staff members. In addition, if you know that staff member's email address, you may also email them directly for assistance. We understand that you may have urgent issues and we promise to accommodate you as quickly as possible. We thank you for your understanding and patience.

 

As we work remotely, please be advised that RSA is working tirelessly behind the scenes to advocate for the best interests of rental property owners. Despite all of the proposals you may hear about in the news, such as a rent strike, rent deferrals, rent forgiveness, and more, the only provision that is in place is a Moratorium on all Eviction Proceedings through August 20, 2020. 

 

Our staff has been in regular contact with State and City elected officials to discuss the best ways to provide relief for rental property owners and struggling tenants. Furthermore, we are advocating on a daily basis for additional federal funding for rental vouchers. Please see the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) section under Resources for important documents, testimony and press releases. As soon as we have any news or updates, please be on the lookout for urgent RSA email blasts and as always, the monthly RSA Reporter. 

 

In the meantime, here are important things you must know as a New York City rental property owner:

 

General Guidance

 

Rental property owners should display the most up to date COVID-19 flyers in your buildings. The most recent flyer is available on the City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene's (DOHMH) website and is translated into over a dozen languages. To view the available languages, click here and locate your preferred language under "Stop the Spread of Coronavirus Flyer." To directly access the English language version of the flyer, please click here. 

 

DOHMH has also compiled a list of frequently asked questions for residential building property owners.

 

Educate Your Tenants

 

At this time, it is no secret that hundreds of tenants have lost their jobs or have been furloughed, which may make rent collection difficult in the months to come. Until workplace restrictions are lifted, we encourage our members to educate your tenants about the latest relief options available.  

The federal government has expedited direct payments to all taxpayers and many have already received their COVID-19 (Coronavirus) stimulus checks. Others should soon be receiving them via direct deposit and physical checks will be mailed as well. Furthermore, expanded unemployment assistance has gone into effect as of April 6th. Click here for an FAQ on the historic relief package that you can share with your tenants. For tenants who have already lost their jobs, New York State unemployment assistance is readily available. Long wait times should be expected over the phone.

 

Please be advised that the financial assistance options for businesses being offered by the United States Small Business Administration (SBA) have temporarily been put on hold as funding has run dry. However, additional funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) will be approved soon. Please encourage your commercial tenants to follow the news closely and monitor the website regularly.

 

Housing Court

 

In response to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) health crisis, New York City Civil Court scaled back operations on March 17, 2020 to reduce the number of people going to the courthouse and would only hear emergency applications on cases and continue trials that were started before 5:00 p.m. on March 16, 2020. 

 

Please be advised that as of April 14, 2020, while evictions still cannot occur, so-called "non-essential matters" where both sides are represented by counsel may now be conferenced or otherwise resolved with a Housing Court Judge. All appearances will take place by Skype for Business. As a reminder, pursuant to an Executive Order issued by Governor Andrew Cuomo, the moratorium on all evictions remains in effect until at least June 20, 2020.   

If you have any questions, we advise you to contact your attorney. 

 

DHCR Guidance

 

On April 24th, DHCR updated Advisory Opinion 2020-2 "Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Guidance” with respect to processing and other procedures affecting the Office of Rent Administration (ORA) and Tenant Protection Unit (TPU).

All agency matters that were not final as of March 13, 2020, are extended until June 2, 2020. DHCR will be re-examining the need to further extend these deadlines as the situation evolves. We will keep you apprised on further developments.

 

 

 

 

  

Find Your Local Elected Official!

 

 

Find Your Elected Official! RSA's top priority is to protect the best interests of the rental housing industry by advocating in the State and City governments.

RSA’s top priority is to protect the best interests of the rental housing industry by advocating in the State and City governments.

 

Although our staff takes pride in advocating on behalf of residential property owners, it is important that you make your voices heard to your local elected officials as well.

 

Contact Your Local Elected Officials - if you live in NYC and want to locate and learn more about your local elected officials where you live or where your building is located.

 

Contact Your State Elected Officials - If you live outside of the five boroughs and you want to locate your state elected official.

 

 

 

 Pay your RSA membership bills online

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