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

          APPEAL OF                                DOCKET NO.CA210355RO
                                              :    DRO DOCKET NO.ZK005965R
            Ralph D. Stroffolino                   TENANT:Helen Helienek 
                                                          & Luise Helienek
                               PETITIONER     :


          On January 20, 1988, the  above-named  petitioner-owner  filed  a
          Petition for Administrative Review against  an  order  issued  on
          December 30, 1987 by the Rent  Administrator,  92-31  Union  Hall
          Street, Jamaica, New York, concerning the  housing  accommodation
          known as 2078 Bay Ridge Parkway, apartment 1B, Brooklyn, New York 
          wherein the Administrator determined that the owner had overcharged 
          the tenant.

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

          This proceeding was commenced on December 4, 1985 when the tenants 
          filed a complaint of rent overcharge.  The tenants stated that they 
          had commenced occupancy on October 1, 1985 at a rent of $400.00 per 
          month.  The tenants also stated that although the lease refers to 
          a new stove, the owner had removed the new stove and replaced  it
          with an old stove from another apartment.

          On reply, the owner stated, among other things, that he had given 
          the tenants a preferential rent and had installed a new stove.  The 
          owner submitted a complete rental history as well as a receipt and 
          tenant consent for a new stove.

          In the order issued  on  December  30,  1987,  the  Administrator
          determined that the tenant had been overcharged and directed  the
          owner to refund an overcharge of  $1178.80  inclusive  of  excess
          security and accrued interest.

          In his appeal, the owner contends that there are four errors in the 
          Administrator's rent calculations:

          1.  The rent in the October 1, 1984 lease should be $377.22;


          2.  The Administrator did not calculate a vacancy increase for the 
          October 1, 1985 lease;

          3.  The Administrator failed to include an  increase  for  a  new

          4.  The tenant paid a lesser rent ($400.00) than the administrator 

          In reply, the tenant contends that the new stove was installed in 
          another apartment, and that the owner's appeal should be denied.

          The Commissioner is of the opinion that this petition  should  be
          granted in part.

          The Commissioner notes that the rent  charged  ($375.00)  in  the
          October 1, 1984 lease was less  than  could  have  been  charged.
          Under rules followed by the DHCR in  such  instances,  the  legal
          stabilization rent is limited to the amount actually charged.

          Pursuant to Rent Guidelines Board Order #17, if a vacancy allowance 
          was collected under Board Order #16, a vacancy allowance  is  not
          permitted under #17.  Since the record indicates that  the  owner
          collected a vacancy increase in the lease of October 1, 1984, the 
          Administrator did not err in excluding a vacancy allowance.

          With respect to an increase for a new stove, the Commissioner finds 
          that the owner has not established that the increase was warranted. 
          Examination of the record indicates that the owner did not address 
          the tenant's allegation stated in the complaint.  The receipt and 
          check submitted by the owner show another apartment.  Accordingly, 
          the Administrator did not err in excluding the increase.

          However, the Commissioner finds that the overcharge to be refunded 
          should be modified.  The record-the  tenant's  statement  in  the
          complaint and the lease rider-confirms  that  the  rent  actually
          charged was $400.00.  There is no corroborating evidence  of  the
          owner's allegation that the rent charged under the October 1, 1987 
          lease was $430.00.  Accordingly, the Commissioner finds that that 
          part of the rent calculation chart  is  correct.   The  chart  is
          amended as follows:

          Lease period       Actual Rent charged  Lawful Stabilization Rent 
          10/1/85 to 9/30/87    $400.00              $399.38

          $.62 x 24 months + Interest $15.73      Total Overcharge
                                                  Including Interest and


                                                  excess security= $216.43

          The owner is directed to refund the overcharge to the tenants c/o 
          Legal Aid Society, 1685 E. 15th Street Brooklyn, New York, 11229.

          If the owner has already complied with the  Rent  Administrator's
          order and there are arrears due to the owner as a result  of  the
          instant determination, the tenant is permitted  to  pay  off  the
          arrears in 12 equal months installments.  Should the tenant vacate 
          after the issuance of this order or have  already  vacated,  said
          arrears shall be payable immediately.  

          Since the record indicates that  the  tenants  have  vacated  the
          subject apartment, upon the expiration of the period in which the 
          owner may institute an Article 78 proceeding pursuant to the Civil 
          Practice Law and Rules, this order may be filed and enforced in the 
          same manner as a judgment. 

          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, granted in 
          part, and the Administrator's order be, and the same  hereby  is,
          modified in accordance with this order and opinion.


                                                  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