Docket No. CC 220222-RT
                                    STATE OF NEW YORK 
                            OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
                                     GERTZ PLAZA
                               92-31 UNION HALL STREET
                              JAMAICA, NEW YORK  11433

          APPEAL OF                               DOCKET NO.: CC 220222-RT

                                                  DISTRICT RENT
                                                  ADMINISTRATOR'S DOCKET
          Francisco & Luz Aviles                  NO.: BI 220046-OI
                                                  Premises: 214 54th St.,
                                                            Apt. 2R, Bklyn.
                                                            New York


              The above-named tenants filed a timely petition for 
          administrative review of an order issued concerning the housing 
          accommodations described above.

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

              The owner commenced these proceedings by submitting before the 
          Administrator an Application for Rent Increase of $42.50 per month, 
          based on the owner's extensive renovations to the tenant's 

              The Administrator approved the owner's Application, issuing an 
          Order increasing the tenant's rent by $42.50 per month in 
          consideration of the expenditures the owner had made in the repairs 
          to the tenant's bathroom.

              In their appeal the tenants contend that the owner began 
          collecting an additional $42.50 per month in rent on March 1, 1987, 
          approximately 6 weeks before the owner filed its Application with 
          the Administrator and 11 months before the above-captioned Order 
          authorizing a rent increase was issued by the Administrator.

              The tenants go on to state their apparent belief that the owner 
          will use the Administrator's Order to collect an additional $42.50 
          per month in rent from them.

              The Commissioner is of the opinion that this petition should be 

          Docket No. CC 220222-RT


              The tenants have not alleged any error of law or fact by the 
          Administrator in the issuance of the Order below.  The substance of 
          tenants' appeal concerns the timing of the rent increase.  An 
          examination of the record reveals that the owner answered the 
          tenants' appeal stating inter alia that it raised the rent "only 
          when authorized."

              9 NYCRR Section 2202.4 (Section 2202.4 of the Rent and Eviction 
          Regulations) states that the Administrator may grant a rent 
          increase when "the landlord and tenant... agree to" a change in 
          services.  In the instant case, the tenants are not denying that 
          they assented to the owner's Application nor are they denying that 
          the repairs to the bathroom took place or that  the repairs 
          represent a benefit to both the tenants and the owner.

              The record shows that the rent increase ordered by the 
          Administrator was prospective only.  If the landlord collected the 
          increase before it was authorized that constituted an overcharge 
          for which the tenant's remedy would have been in the courts.  (But 
          it should be noted that a tenant's right to recover an overcharge 
          under the Rent and Eviction Regulations is generally limited to one 
          occurring in the last two years.)  The increase authorized was in 
          the legal rent.  If the landlord has collected that increase in 
          addition to an illegal increase that was already collected then 
          there has been an overcharge for which the tenant's remedy is in 
          the courts.

              THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent and 
          Eviction Regulations, it is

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


                                             Joseph A. D'Agosta
                                             Acting Deputy Commissioner

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