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

          APPEAL OF                                    DOCKET NO.:
               Coster Realty Co.
               c/o Schur Management Co., Ltd.
                                                       RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
                                                       DOCKET NO.:


          On April 19, 1989, the above-named petitioner-owner filed a 
          petition for administrative review (PAR) of an order issued on 
          March 21, 1989, by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing 
          accommodation known as 162 East 36th Street, Apt. 2A-6, New York, 
          N.Y., 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 
          issues raised by the administrative appeal.

          The issue herein is whether the Rent Administrator properly reduced 
          the rent of the subject apartment.

          On January 4, 1987, the tenant filed a complaint alleging that the 
          owner failed to maintain services.  More specifically, the tenant 
          alleged, in pertinent part, that the owner failed to maintain the 
          mailboxes in the subject premises.

          The owner filed an answer to the complaint alleging that services 
          are being provided and that the tenant's mailbox is being 

          A DHCR inspection conducted on February 13, 1989, revealed that  
          mailbox services were deficient.  More specifically, the report 


          showed that loose mail-box frames on both sides of the foyer 
          resulted in all mailboxes being loose and that several mailboxes 
          also had loose and bent mail-box doors.

          On appeal, the petitioner-owner asserted, in pertinent part, that 
          another complaint that the tenant filed concerning the mailboxes 
          was dismissed in an order issued on October 15, 1987 under Docket 
          No. BA410735-S; and that the mail-box services being offered to the 
          tenant are the same as always and that, in fact, there has been no 
          diminution in service.

          The petition was served on the tenant on July 14, 1989 and on May 
          11, 1989, the tenant filed an answer to the petition stating that 
          other repairs were restored by the owner but that repairs to the 
          mailbox were incomplete.

          After a careful consideration of the entire evidence of record the 
          Commissioner is of the opinion that the administrative appeal 
          should be denied.

          Pursuant to Section 2523.4(a) of the Rent Stabilization Code, a 
          tenant may apply to the Division of Housing and Community Renewal 
          (DHCR) for reduction of the legal regulated rent to the level in 
          effect prior to the most recent guidelines adjustment, and the DHCR 
          shall so reduce the rent for the period for which it is found that 
          the owner has failed to maintain required services.

          Required services are defined in Section 2520.6(r) to include 
          repairs and maintenance.

          The Commissioner has considered and rejects the petitioner's claim 
          on appeal that the prior order issued on October 15, 1987, which 
          dismissed the tenant's complaint in that proceeding is dispositive 
          in the instant proceeding.

          The DHCR inspection in the subject proceeding (CA410721S) occurred 
          on February 3, 1989 and the inspection in the earlier proceeding 
          (BA410735S) occurred on June 29, 1987, eighteen months earlier.

          The latest inspector's report clearly showed that the owner was not 
          maintaining mailbox services, in that the existing equipment 
          required repair, even though the earlier report dismissed the 
          tenant's complaint in that proceeding.

          The tenant has a continuing right to file an appropriate 
          application for a rent reduction if the facts show that services 
          are not being maintained.


          Accordingly, the Commissioner finds that the owner has offered 
          insufficient reason to disturb the Rent Administrator's 

          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 February 3, 1989, and that 
          pursuant to Section 2523.4(a) of the Code, the Administrator was 
          authorized to reduce the rent upon determining that the owner had 
          failed to maintain services.

          The automatic stay of the retroactive rent abatement that resulted 
          by the filing of this petition is vacated upon issuance of this 
          order and opinion.

          Upon a restoration of services, the owner may separately apply for 
          rent restoration.

          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 
          the Administrator's order be, and the same hereby 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