The D.C. Rental Housing Commission has announced the 1983 automatic rent increase allowed by city law for rent controlled housing will be 4.2 percent, effective May 1.

"Based on the experiences in previous years, we expect the automatic rent increase to be implemented in over three quarters of the District's 112,000 rent controlled units during the months of May, June, July and August," acting Rent Administrator John Hampton said.

Established in the Rental Housing Act of 1980, the city's rent control law, the automatic rent increase is based on the percentage change in the consumer price index for the Washington area in 1982.

The following requirements must be met by landlords who want to raise rents:

* The building or unit must be registered with the RAO.

* The tenant must receive a notice of rent increase at least 30 days before the increase takes effect.

* A Certification of Implementation of the 1983 automatic rent increase must be filed with the RAO on or before the day the increase takes effect.

* Twelve months must have elapsed since any prior automatic rent increase or hardship petition increase.

* Six months must have elapsed since implementation of any other type of rent increase allowed under the city's rent control laws.

* The building and the rental units must be in substantial compliance with D.C. housing regulations.

For information, contact the RAO at 420 7th St. NW or call 724-5600.