AJ 410565 RO
                                  STATE OF NEW YORK
                      DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
                            OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
                                     GERTZ PLAZA
                               92-31 UNION HALL STREET
                              JAMAICA, NEW YORK   11433



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          IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE     ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW 
          APPEAL OF                               DOCKET NO.:  AJ 410565 RO

                    
                     MARGARET MILLER,             DRO DOCKET NO.: L-3116840-R/
                                                                  23,046

                                                  TENANT:  DR. ROBERT SPALTEN
                                  PETITIONER
          ----------------------------------X                                   


            ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW


          On October 29, 1986, the  above-named  petitioner-owner  filed  a
          Petition for Administrative Review against  an  order  issued  on
          September 24, 1986 by the Rent Administrator, 10 Columbus Circle, 
          New York, New York concerning the housing accommodation known  as
          Apartment 3C, at 9 East 67th Street, New York, New  York  wherein
          the Administrator determined that an overcharge had occurred.

          The Commissioner has reviewed all of the evidence in  the  record
          and has carefully considered that portion of the record  relevant
          to the issues raised by the administrative appeal.

          The tenant originally  commenced  this  proceeding  by  filing  a
          complaint of rent overcharge and of the owner's failure to  offer
          a renewal lease.

          In answer to the complaint, the owner set forth  a  rent  history
          from November 1, 1972 and submitted  a  set  of  leases  for  the
          period November 1, 1972 through January 31, 1979 and a rent  roll
          for September 1984.  The owner asserted that in light of  various
          improvements which she had made and  had  not  charged  for,  the
          tenant had been undercharged.  Subsequently, the owner  submitted
          bills for the  improvements  allegedly  made  before  the  tenant
          commenced occupancy.  The owner also asserted that the tenant had 
          renovated the apartment, i.e. had converted it to a  two  bedroom
          apartment, without getting proper approval.  The owner stated she 
          had not offered a renewal lease because she hoped to  obtain  the
          apartment for owner-occupancy.

          In the order here under review, the Administrator determined that 
          the tenant had been overcharged and directed the  owner  to  roll
          back the rent  and  to  refund  overcharges  of  $1,482.47.   The
          Administrator also directed the  owner  to  offer  the  tenant  a
          renewal lease.

          In  its  appeal,  the  owner  contends  that   the   tenant   was






          AJ 410565 RO
          undercharged  because  she  did  not  charge   permissible   rent
          increases, i.e.,

               1)   the owner did not  charge  for  new  appliances
                    or for renovating the kitchen;

               2)   the owner did not charge the  vacancy  increase
                    at the inception of the tenancy;

               3)   the owner did not  charge  an  air  conditioner
                    fee.

          The owner also contends that the Administrator should  have  made
          allowance for the $25.00 fee which the tenant agreed  to  pay  as
          consideration  for   the   owner's   permission   to   effectuate
          alterations to the apartment.  The owner  further  contends  that
          the Administrator's directive to offer the tenant a renewal lease 
          was erroneous in that it was made without  consideration  of  the
          owner's request for owner-occupancy of the apartment.   Moreover,
          the  owner  alleges  that  the  tenant  rents  other   stabilized
          apartments and  therefore  may  not  be  entitled  to  this  rent
          stabilized apartment.  Finally, the owner contends  that  because
          of the complexity of the facts in the instant matter,  a  hearing
          should  have  been  held  before  the  Administrator  rendered  a
          decision.

          After careful consideration, the Commissioner is of  the  opinion
          that this petition should be denied.

          The Commissioner notes that the owner did not seek to collect any 
          of the uncharged rent increases.   The  Code  provides  for  rent
          increases that may be charged but does not mandate that they must 
          be charged.  Where the rent charged is less than could have  been
          charged, the lawful  stabilization  rent  is  the  rent  that  is
          charged.   Accordingly,  the  owner  cannot  now  collect   these
          increases.

          Pursuant to Code Section 2522.1, the legal regulated rent may  be
          increased or decreased as specified in the Code.  The Code  makes
          no provision for fees such as the alteration fee agreed to by the 
          tenant where the tenant  paid  the  costs  of  alteration.   Code
          Section 2520.13 provides that an agreement by the tenant to waive 
          the benefit of any provision of the  Rent  Stabilization  Law  or
          Code is void.  Moreover, pursuant to Code Section 2525.1,  it  is
          unlawful, regardless of any contract, lease, or other  obligation
          for any person to demand or receive  any  rent  for  any  housing
          accommodation  in   excess   of   the   legal   regulated   rent.
          Accordingly, the Administrator did not err  in  disregarding  the
          agreed upon fee in determining the lawful stabilization rent.

          As regards the  owner's  request  to  regain  possession  of  the
          subject apartment for its own  use,  the  owner  did  not  submit
          evidence of having taken appropriate concrete action  to  achieve
          that end.  The Administrator was not  required  to  ignore  legal
          requirements  for  lease  renewals  to  conform  to  the  owner's
          precatory language.   Accordingly,  the  Administrator  correctly
          directed the owner to offer the  tenant  a  renewal  lease.   The
          issue of the tenant's rights to a stabilized apartment should  be
          brought  to  the  appropriate  forum,  a   court   of   competent






          AJ 410565 RO
          jurisdiction.

          With respect to the owner's contention regarding  a  hearing,  it
          should  be  pointed  out   that   due   process   requires   full
          consideration  of  all  issues  raised  by  the  parties  to  the
          administrative proceeding.   However,  the  resolution  of  these
          issues does not necessarily require  an  oral  hearing  which  is
          discretionary and not mandated by law.   The  Commissioner  finds
          that the evidence and written submissions  in  the  instant  case
          were sufficient to render a determination.

          On the basis of the entire evidence of record it  is  found  that
          the Administrator's order is correct and should be affirmed.

          This order may, upon the expiration of the period  in  which  the
          owner may institute a proceeding pursuant to Article  78  of  the
          Civil Practice Law and Rules, be filed and enforced in  the  same
          manner as a judgment or not in excess of twenty percent per month 
          thereof may be offset against any rent thereafter due the owner.

          THEREFORE,  in  accordance  with  the  provisions  of  the   Rent
          Stabilization Law and Code, it is

          ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby  is,  denied,
          and that the order of the Rent Administrator  be,  and  the  same
          hereby is, affirmed.


          ISSUED:

                                                  ------------------------
                                                  JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                                  Acting Deputy Commissioner
           
             
                                             
    

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