(No reviews yet) Write a Review
  • Window Guards NYC
  • Window Guards NYC
  • Window Guards NYC
  • Window Guards NYC
Frequently bought together:


The Importance of Window Guards in New York City


New York City is known for its towering skyscrapers and densely populated residential buildings. While these high-rise buildings offer breathtaking views and maximize space in the crowded city, they also present unique safety challenges, particularly for families with young children. One critical safety measure that addresses these challenges is the installation of window guards.

What Are Window Guards?

Window guards are metal or aluminum devices installed on windows to prevent children from falling out. They consist of bars spaced no more than 4.5 inches apart, ensuring that a child cannot squeeze through. These guards are crucial in protecting children from accidental falls, which can result in serious injuries or fatalities.

Legal Requirements

In New York City, the installation of window guards is not just a safety recommendation; it is a legal requirement under Local Law 57 of 2011. This law mandates that:

  1. Landlords Must Install Window Guards: Landlords are required to install window guards in apartments where children aged 10 and under reside. This requirement extends to apartments where children regularly spend time, such as homes of grandparents or other caregivers.

  2. Tenants Can Request Window Guards: Tenants without young children can still request window guards, and landlords must comply. This is particularly relevant for tenants who have visiting children or simply wish to enhance their home’s safety.

  3. Window Guard Compliance: Window guards must be installed in accordance with the guidelines set by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH). The guards must be installed on all windows except those leading to fire escapes, which must remain accessible for emergency exits.

Why Window Guards Are Crucial

Preventing Accidental Falls

The primary purpose of window guards is to prevent accidental falls. According to the New York City Department of Health, window falls are a leading cause of serious injury and death among young children in the city. Installing window guards can significantly reduce the risk of these tragic accidents.

Peace of Mind for Parents and Caregivers

For parents and caregivers, window guards offer peace of mind. Knowing that a simple, cost-effective measure can protect their children from potentially fatal falls allows them to focus on other aspects of their child's safety and well-being.

Public Health and Safety

Window guards are an essential public health measure. By preventing injuries and fatalities, they reduce the burden on emergency services and healthcare facilities. This contributes to the overall safety and health of the community.

Enforcement and Compliance

The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene is responsible for enforcing window guard regulations. Landlords who fail to comply with the law can face significant fines and penalties. Tenants are encouraged to report non-compliance to ensure that all residential buildings adhere to safety standards.


In a city where high-rise living is the norm, window guards are an indispensable safety feature. They protect the most vulnerable members of society—young children—from the dangers of accidental falls. By complying with legal requirements and prioritizing safety, landlords and tenants can work together to ensure that all New York City homes are safe and secure. Window guards are not just a legal obligation; they are a vital component of urban child safety.



Window Guards NYC: Information for Tenants AND OWNERS

Each year, young children are injured or die in falls from unguarded windows, even from the first floor. These tragedies are preventable with properly installed and approved window guards, which are required in many residential buildings.

You must have window guards if you live in a building that has at least three apartments and a child 10 or younger lives in your apartment. If you do not have window guards, ask your landlord to install them. If the landlord doesn’t fix the problem call 311.

Never leave a child alone in a room where there are open windows that do not have window guards. If window guards are not installed, keep windows closed and make sure children cannot climb up to them. Screens are not a substitute for window guards.

Even if you do not have a child 10 or younger who lives with you, you can still get window guards installed in your windows. If a window has an air conditioner, it must be permanently and securely installed with one-way metal screws to prevent any falls. The law does not allow tenants to remove window guards to install air conditioners. You can request the building owner to install your air conditioner unit and window guards in your home.


Each year between January 1 and January 15, landlords must give every tenant or occupant the Annual Notice form (see "Required Forms" above). You can send the notice by mail or deliver it in person. You can also include it with the January rent bill, but only if the bill is delivered between December 15 and January 16.

If you have not received a response to the form from your tenant by February 15, you must inspect the apartment to determine if a child 10 or younger lives there. If a child does live there, you must check that approved window guards are properly installed and maintained. You must make reasonable efforts to find a suitable time for the inspection, and then if needed, the installation or repairs.

If the tenant refuses you access and you cannot get into the apartment to inspect and make any necessary window guard installations or repairs by March 1, you must describe the situation in a letter and send it to:

Department of Health and Mental Hygiene — Window Falls Prevention Program
125 Worth Street, CN-58, Room 620
New York, NY 10013

The letter should include a roster of tenants in your building(s) who did not comply. It must also include:

  • Your name and contact information.
  • Dates and times you notified the tenant that you needed to inspect the apartment.
  • Dates and times when you attempted to visit the apartment (including any weekends and evenings).
  • Apartment number(s) and names of tenants who did not comply and their contact information.


Building owners may charge tenants for the installation and cost of window guards in their apartments. The cost of window guards installed in public areas may not be passed on to tenants in the building. If a tenant moves out before paying for window guards in full, they must pay the balance immediately. The owner may deduct the remaining unpaid portion from the tenant's security deposit.

When a new tenant moves into an apartment that already has window guards, you cannot charge the new tenant for them. If you choose to replace the window guards due to renovation or window replacement, you cannot charge the tenant for the new guards.

For rent stabilized or controlled apartments, owners may collect a temporary surcharge for window guards, but the maximum amount may not exceed $10 per guard. The tenant may choose to pay all at once or over a period of one to three years. This charge may not become a part of the base rent for the apartment.


Local Law 57 requires property owners must provide and properly install approved window guards on all windows, including first floor bathrooms and windows leading onto a balcony or terrace in an apartment where a child 10 years of age or younger resides and in each common area window, if any, in such buildings. The exceptions to this law are windows that open onto a fire escape and windows on the first floor that are a required secondary exit in a building in which there are fire escapes on the second floor and up.

The law also requires owners to send an Annual Notice to tenants of multiple dwellings (buildings of 3 or more apartments) to determine if window guards are required:

  • Window Guard Annual Notice to Tenant or Occupant for Buildings Built Prior to 1978 (Combined with Annual Lead-Based Paint Notice) | other languages: Español
  • Window Guard Annual Notice to Tenant or Occupant for Buildings Built After 1978 | other languages: Español


Tenants' Rights and Responsibilities

Tenants can request window guards in writing to their property owner or landlord. Tenants can request window guards for any reason, even if there are no resident children 10 years of age or younger, the landlord must install them. For example, grandparents who have visiting children, parents who share custody and occupants who provide child care may wish to request window guards.

If required or requested window guards have not been installed, or if they appear to be insecure or improperly installed, or if there is more than 4½ inches of open unguarded space in the window opening, file a complaint online or call 311.

The law does not allow tenants to remove window guards to install air conditioners. If you want an air conditioner installed, the property management must follow all required regulations to ensure that the air conditioner is securely installed to prevent any falls either from dislodging the air conditioner or falling through some accessible opening.

Listen to this podcast to learn more about baby-proofing your home. Whether you are bringing home a baby or chasing after a toddler, every room in your home can be dangerous for a child. Here is a review of free and low cost changes you can make around your home to keep kids safe.


or properties with three or more units, New York City law requires that building owners install and maintain window guards for apartments where a child age 10 years or younger lives. Every window in the apartment, except those leading to fire escapes, must have window guards. These metal or aluminum devices are designed to prevent children from falling out of windows. They are different from burglar bars.


The law has several legal requirements:


Window Guard Notices

When tenants sign a lease, the landlord must provide a window guard notice form within the first 30 days of occupancy. In addition, building owners must send an annual notice regarding window guards between January 1 and January 16. Tenants are required to complete and return the form to notify the landlord if a child age 10 years or younger lives in the apartment. These forms can also be used to request the guards for any other reason, such as to protect visiting children or for personal safety concerns.


Installation Requirements

Where required or requested, landlords must install window guards on every window in the apartment, even on the first floor, with the exception of windows leading to fire escapes. Window guards must be left off one window in each ground-floor apartment to allow use of the window as an emergency exit. In addition, all public hallway windows must have window guards for buildings with children age 10 years or younger.


Window Guard Compliance

These metal guards must meet the requirements of the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, which has approved many types of these devices. Approved window guards are a minimum of 15 inches tall, with horizontal bars spaced 4.5 inches apart. The New York City Department of Health maintains a list of approved devices online. Guards and any other limiting devices should be appropriate to the window type (e.g., double hung, casement, sliding, etc.).


Window Guard Costs

Apartment building owners and landlords are responsible for installation and maintenance of these protective devices. Owners can charge a one-time fee per window guard for apartment units, but they cannot charge tenants for window guards that were previously installed. (Window guard charges cannot exceed $10 per window guard for units that are either rent-stabilized or rent-controlled.) In addition, window guard charges cannot be included in the base rent.


For co-operative buildings, the responsibility for window guards remains with management. For owners in condominium buildings, individual unit owners should check with building management to find out who is responsible for installing and maintaining the guards. (Some condo managers do install them, but they’re still the owner’s responsibility.) Even in condo buildings, management is still responsible for guards in the hallway.

View AllClose