Governor Cuomo signed into law (Chapter 4 of the Laws of 2013) the Omnibus Housing bill that renews the coop/condo abatement and J-51 programs and amends the certain provisions of the 421a program.
A brief explanation of the bill’s provisions is below.
The coop/condo abatement would be extended for three years. However, to be eligible for the abatement, the unit must be the primary residence of the unit owner. A unit owner may still receive an abatement for up to three units, provided they are in the same building and one of the units is the owner’s primary residence. In addition, the thresholds for an abatement were modified as described below.
(that is the big change, as now only primary residences qualify)
For non-primary residence coops/condos where the unit received an abatement in FY2011 the abatement will phase out according to the schedule below.
The J-51 program, which provides a tax benefit for the renovation of existing housing, would be extended three years. However, the amendments would eliminate benefits for the conversion of commercial space to residential use and limit the eligibility for condominium and cooperative buildings with units whose average assessed value per unit is >$30,000. However, projects that receive “substantial government assistance,” which is defined to include city, state, or federal loans or grants, are not subject to this cap. Likewise, conversion projects receiving substantial government assistance would be eligible for J-51 benefits.
The amendments to 421a would encourage new residential development in high density 15 FAR districts in Midtown and Downtown Manhattan. In the modification to the program in 2007, the renewal of this separate provision was accidentally omitted. This amendment was intended to restore the benefits that have been part of the program since 1993. In addition the bill restores flexibility in the completion of construction provisions that are crucial to the resumption of stalled housing projects.