BH 420082 RO

                                  STATE OF NEW YORK
                            OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
                                     GERTZ PLAZA
                               92-31 UNION HALL STREET
                               JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433

          APPEAL OF                              DOCKET NO. BH 420082 RO
                                              :  DRO DOCKET NO.ZAJ 420314-S
               BARHITE & HOLZINGER, INC.                     

                                PETITIONER    : 

               On August 17, 1987, the above-named petitioner-landlord filed 
          a Petition for Administrative Review against an order issued on July 
          13, 1987, by the Rent Administrator, 92-31 Union Hall Street, 
          Jamaica, New York, concerning the housing accommodations known as 
          215 West 90th Street, New York, New York, Apartment No. 2E, 
          wherein the Rent Administrator determined that the owner had 
          failed to maintain adequate hot water service and accordingly 
          reduced the rent of the subject apartment.

          The Administrative Appeal is being determined pursuant to the 
          provisions of Section 2202.16 of the Rent and Eviction Regulations 
          for New York City.

          The issue herein is whether the Rent Administrator's order 
          was warranted.

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

          This proceeding was originally commenced by the filing of an 
          Individual Tenant Statement of Complaint in which the tenant 
          stated in substance that there was no hot water in the kitchen.

          In an answer to the complaint dated November 25, 1986, the 
          landlord stated in substance that the tenant denied access to 
          allow repairs to be made.  On December 9, 1986, the landlord 
          stated in substance that the tenant had now allowed access and 
          that the repair work was being done.

          An inspection was held at the subject apartment on February 
          24, 1987.  Such inspection disclosed that the hot water 
          temperature in the kitchen was 104 degrees and not the required 
          120 degrees.

          In Order Number ZAJ 420314-S, the Rent Administrator 
          determined that, based upon the physical inspection, there was 

          BH 420082 RO

          inadequate hot water in the kitchen and reduced the maximum legal 
          rent by 7 1/2% per month effective the first rent payment day 
          following the issuance of the Rent Administrator's order.  
          However, the front page of the order incorrectly listed the rent 
          decrease as 2 1/2% while on the back page of the order, the 
          correct decrease of 7 1/2% was listed.  A 7 1/2% rent decrease for 
          rent controlled apartments due to a finding of lack of heat and / 
          or hot water service is standard. 

          In this petition, the landlord alleges in substance that no 
          rent decrease was warranted since the tenant refuses to provide 
          proper access.  Subsequently, the landlord advised that its 
          plumbing specialist visited the subject apartment on December 4, 
          1987 to effectuate repairs, but was denied access.  In support of 
          such contention, the landlord submitted an affidavit from the 
          plumbing specialist to the effect that the tenant's wife was 
          about to give birth and would not give access for repairs to be 
          made for approximately three months.

          In answer to this petition, the tenant stated in substance 
          that he does provide proper access to allow repairs to be made, 
          but did object when the landlord wanted to commence repair work on 
          the Thanksgiving holiday weekend in November 1986.

          The Commissioner is of the opinion that this petition should 
          be denied and the Rent Administtrator's order modified.

          Section 2202.16 of the Rent and Eviction Regulations for New 
          York City provides in pertinent part that if the landlord fails to 
          maintain services, the Administrator may order a decrease in the 
          maximum rent in an amount which the Administrator in his 
          discretion may determine.

          In the instant case, the evidence of record including a 
          physical inspection discloses that there was inadequate hot water 
          service in the kitchen of the subject apartment.  Accordingly, the 
          Rent Administrator's order reducing the rent was warranted.

          It is noted that the tenant's refusal to allow repair work to 
          be commenced during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend was 
          reasonable and that the landlord has conceded that it had access 
          to effectuate the repairs on December 9, 1986.  However, such 
          repair work failed to remedy the condition as evidenced by the 
          subsequent physical inspection.  Further, the landlord's attempt 
          at repair work subsequent to the issuance of the Rent 
          Administrator's order cannot be used to overturn such order.  
          Moreover, the Commissioner is of the opinion that the tenant's 
          alleged request to delay repair work at that time due to the 
          imminent birth of her baby was reasonable and that the landlord 
          has been afforded adequate access to complete the required repair 

          This order is issued without prejudice to the landlord's 
          filing of an application to restore the rent due to a restoration 

          BH 420082 RO
          of services when the required repair work has been completed.

          THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent and 
          Eviction Regulations for New York City, it is

          ORDERED, that this petition for administrative review be, and 
          the same hereby is, denied, and, that the order of the Rent 
          Administrator be, and the same hereby is, modified to list the 
          decrease in the monthly maximum legal rent as 7 1/2% rather than 2 
          1/2% on both the fron and back page of the order.  In all other 
          respects, the Rent Administrator's order is affirmed.


                                          JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                          Deputy Commissioner



TenantNet Home | TenantNet Forum | New York Tenant Information
DHCR Information | DHCR Decisions | Housing Court Decisions | New York Rent Laws
Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Contact Us

Subscribe to our Mailing List!
Your Email      Full Name