Low vacancy rate qualifies Kingston for rent stabilization
Phillip Pantuso reports in the Times Union that a new vacancy study says Kingston is now qualified to become the first municipality north of the New York City suburbs to opt into the state Emergency Tenant Protection Act. The study conducted by the city found a rental vacancy rate of 1.57 percent, and home values have increased nearly 50 percent since the start of the pandemic. So Kingston now could adopt rent stabilization on buildings constructed before 1974 with six or more units, under guidelines set forth by the state’s Emergency Tenant Protection Act. In 2021, an Ulster County Rental Housing Survey showed a vacancy rate of 1.81 percent for non-subsidized housing in the county. The housing problem -- not enough houses or apartments are available, and they are too expensive -- is prevalent throughout the Hudson Valley. “My hope is that this evidence validates the experiences of Kingston residents, and that action can be taken quickly to help those who are being priced out of their homes every day by speculatory rent increases,” said Rashida Tyler, a housing organizer who helps run the Ulster County Coalition for Housing Justice. Read more about this story in the Times Union.