Code of the District of Columbia

§ 42–3502.06. Rent ceilings abolished.

(a) Rent ceilings are abolished, except that the housing provider may implement, in accordance with § 42-3502.08(g), rent ceiling adjustments pursuant to petitions and voluntary agreements approved by the Rent Administrator prior to August 5, 2006. Petitions and voluntary agreements pending as of August 5, 2006, shall be decided pursuant to the provisions of this subchapter in effect prior to August 5, 2006, and may be implemented in accordance with § 42-3502.08(g). In considering a hardship petition pursuant to § 42-3502.12, any unimplemented rent charged increase pursuant to a petition or voluntary agreement approved by the Rent Administrator shall be included in the maximum possible rental income. Except to the extent provided in subsections (b) and (c) of this section, no housing provider of any rental unit subject to this chapter may charge or collect rent for the rental unit in excess of the amount computed by adding to the base rent not more than all rent increases authorized after April 30, 1985, for the rental unit by this chapter, by prior rent control laws and any administrative decision under those laws, and by a court of competent jurisdiction. No tenant may sublet a rental unit at a rent greater than that tenant pays the housing provider.

(b) On an annual basis, the Rental Housing Commission shall determine an adjustment of general applicability in the rent charged established by subsection (a) of this section. This adjustment of general applicability shall be equal to the change during the previous calendar year, ending each December 31, in the Washington, D.C., Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) for all items during the preceding calendar year. No adjustment of general applicability shall exceed 10%. A housing provider may not implement an adjustment of general applicability, or an adjustment permitted by subsection (c) of this section for a rental unit within 12 months of the effective date of the previous adjustment of general applicability, or instead, an adjustment permitted by subsection (c) of this section in the rent charged for that unit.

(c) At the housing provider's election, instead of any adjustment authorized by subsection (b) of this section, the rent charged for an accommodation may be adjusted through a hardship petition under § 42-3502.12.

(d) If on July 17, 1985 the rent being charged exceeds the allowable rent ceiling, that rent shall be reduced to the allowable rent ceiling effective the next date that the rent is due. This subsection shall not apply to any rent administratively approved under the Rental Accommodations Act of 1975, the Rental Housing Act of 1977, or the Rental Housing Act of 1980, or any rent increase authorized by a court of competent jurisdiction. The housing provider shall notify the tenant in writing of any decrease required under this chapter before the effective date of the decrease.

(e) A tenant may challenge a rent adjustment implemented under any section of this chapter by filing a petition with the Rent Administrator under § 42-3502.16. No petition may be filed with respect to any rent adjustment, under any section of this chapter, more than 3 years after the effective date of the adjustment, except that a tenant must challenge the new base rent as provided in § 42-3501.03(4) within 6 months from the date the housing provider files his base rent as required by this chapter.

(f) Repealed.

(g) Repealed.


(July 17, 1985, D.C. Law 6-10, § 206, 32 DCR 3089; Sept. 26, 1992, D.C. Law 9-154, § 2(a), 39 DCR 5673; Aug. 5, 2006, D.C. Law 16-145, § 2(a), (c), 53 DCR 4889; Mar. 8, 2007, D.C. Law 16-240, § 3, 54 DCR 597; Mar. 14, 2007, D.C. Law 16-294, § 3, 54 DCR 1086; Apr. 24, 2007, D.C. Law 16-305, § 67(a), 53 DCR 6198; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-353, §§ 184(c), 253, 56 DCR 1117; Feb. 18, 2017, D.C. Law 21-197, § 2(a), 63 DCR 15030; Apr. 7, 2017, D.C. Law 21-239, § 3(c), 64 DCR 1588.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 45-2516.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 42-3501.03, § 42-3502.02, § 42-3502.08, § 42-3502.09, § 42-3502.10, § 42-3502.12, and § 42-3502.16.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 16-145, in subsec. (a), inserted the first three sentences; and, in subsecs. (b), (c), and (f)(3), substituted “rent charged” for “rent ceiling”.

D.C. Law 16-240 rewrote subsec. (f)(2)(A) and added subsec. (f)(2)(2A). Prior to amendment, subsec. (f)(2)(A) read as follows: “(A) ’Disabled tenant’ means an individual who has a medically determinable physical impairment, including blindness, which prohibits and incapacitates 75% of that person’s ability to move about, to assist himself or herself, or to engage in an occupation, and has an income of not more than $40,000 per year at the time of approval by the Rent Administrator of a petition for capital improvements pursuant to § 42-3502.10.”

D.C. Law 16-294, in subsec. (a), made a technical correction that made no change in text.

D.C. Law 16-305, in subsec. (f)(1), substituted “tenant or tenant with a disability” for “or disabled tenant”; and, in subsec. (f)(2), purported to substitute “Tenant with a disability” for “Disabled tenant”.

D.C. Law 17-353, in the section heading, substituted “Rent ceilings abolished” for “Rent ceiling”, and validated a previously made technical correction in subsec. (a).

Cross References

Fee for housing accommodation conversion, rights to reduction, see § 42-3402.04.

Expiration of Law

See Historical and Statutory Notes following § 42-3502.01.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(a) of Rent Control Hardship Petition Limitation Emergency Amendment Act of 2016 (D.C. Act 21-483, Aug. 18, 2016, 63 DCR 10730).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 2(a), (c) of Rent Control Reform Emergency Amendment Act of 2006 (D.C. Act 16-470, July 31, 2006, 53 DCR 6772).

For temporary (90 day) repeal of section, see § 2(d) of Rent Control Reform Emergency Amendment Act of 2006 (D.C. Act 16-470, July 31, 2006, 53 DCR 6772).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2 of the Rent Control Hardship Petition Limitation Emergency Amendment Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-430), October 7, 2014, 61 DCR 10706, 20 STAT 4145).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(a) of the Rent Control Hardship Petition Limitation Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-575, Jan. 13, 2015, 62 DCR 1068, 21 STAT 717).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(a) of the Rent Control Hardship Petition Limitation Emergency Amendment Act of 2015 (D.C. Act 21-160, Oct. 16, 2015, 62 DCR 13722).

Temporary Legislation

For temporary (225 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(a) of Rent Control Hardship Petition Limitation Temporary Amendment Act of 2016 (D.C. Law 21-169, Nov. 30, 2016, 63 DCR 12597).

For temporary (225 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(a) of the Rent Control Hardship Petition Limitation Temporary Amendment Act of 2014 (D.C. Law 20-164, February 26, 2015, 61 DCR 11095).

For temporary (225 days) amendment of this section, see § 2(a) of the Rent Control Hardship Petition Limitation Temporary Amendment Act of 2015 (D.C. Law 21-49, Jan. 9, 2016, 62 DCR 13990).