STATE OF NEW YORK
DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
92-31 UNION HALL STREET
JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433
IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
APPEAL OF DOCKET NO.:
SHIRLEY REITER BAUMAN, RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
On February 3, 1988, the above-named petitioner-tenant filed a
petition for administrative review (PAR) of an order issued on
January 8, 1988, by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing
accommodation known as 170 Second Avenue, Apartment 5-A, New York,
New York, wherein the Administrator determined that a reduction in
rent was warranted based upon a reduction in services.
The Rent Administrator also directed full restoration of services.
The Commissioner has reviewed all the evidence in the record and
has carefully considered that portion of the record relevant to the
issue raised by the administrative appeal.
The issue herein is whether the Rent Administrator properly reduced
the rent of the subject apartment.
On June 1, 1987, the tenant filed a complaint alleging that
although the owner replaced the windows throughout the apartment
with new windows, these windows can not be opened from the top
without expending great energy and labor.
The owner filed an answer to the complaint alleging that the new
windows are in working order excepting certain normal minor repairs
attendant to the installation of new windows which are not of a
rent reducing nature.
A Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) inspection
conducted on November 9, 1987, revealed that one top kitchen window
was hard to open.
On appeal, the petitioner-tenant asserted, in pertinent part, that
the Rent Administrator erred by reducing the rent for only one
kitchen window because the rent should have been reduced for all
seven windows in the apartment insofar as none of these windows
were in working order.
The petition was served on the owner on March 18, 1988, and on
March 25, 1988, the owner filed an answer to the petition stating
that the tenant's position that all windows in the apartment are
defective and that she should have been granted a rent reduction
for all windows is untenable in that any problems with the newly
installed windows were minor and the DHCR inspection supported this
contention by finding that only the kitchen window required repair.
The owner further alleged that even the $1.50 rent reduction was in
error because it was a minor and non-rent reducing item.
After a careful consideration of the entire evidence of record the
Commissioner is of the opinion that the administrative appeal
should be denied.
For rent controlled tenants, Section 2202.16 of the Rent and
Eviction Regulations provides that a finding that an owner failed
to maintain essential services may result in an order of decrease
in maximum rent, in an amount determined by the discretion of the
Rent Administrator to reflect the decreased rental value because of
the decrease in services.
A review of the record clearly shows that the DHCR inspector
checked all windows in the apartment and found that there was one
top kitchen window that was hard to open.
The Commissioner notes that the owner's contention that a window
difficult to open is a minor service deficiency unworthy of a rent
reduction to be without merit. This type of service deficiency is
worthy of the owner's attention and should have been immediately
The Commissioner finds that the Administrator properly based his
determination on the entire record, including the results of the
on-site physical inspection conducted on November 9, 1987, and
that pursuant to Section 2202.16 of the Rent and Eviction Regula-
tions a rent reduction reflecting the reduced rental value of the
accommodation because of the decreased services was warranted.
Accordingly, the Commissioner further finds that the tenant has
offered insufficient reason to disturb the Rent Administrator's
The Division's records indicate that the owner's rent restoration
application was denied on August 26,1988, (Docket No. CC420048OR).
The owner may file another application if the repairs have been
made. The rent reduction remains in effect until a restoration
order is issued by the Rent Administrator.
THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent and
Eviction Regulations for New York, it is
ORDERED, that the tenant's petition be, and the same hereby is,
denied, and the Rent Administrator's order be, and the same hereby
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA