STATE OF NEW YORK
DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
92-31 UNION HALL
JAMAICA, NY 11433
IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
APPEAL OF DOCKET NO.:
56 Stagg Realty Corp. c/o
ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
On March 21, 1989, the above-named petitioner-owner filed a
petition for administrative review (PAR) of an order issued on
March 10, 1989, by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing
accommodation known as 56 Stagg Street, Brooklyn, N.Y., Apt.#1-A,
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 of 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 based upon a diminution of
On February 16, 1988, the tenant filed a complaint alleging that
the owner had failed to maintain various services, including rotten
and drafty windows.
The owner failed to file an answer to the complaint.
A DHCR inspection conducted on February 9, 1989, revealed that all
services were being maintained including the installation of new
windows, but the moldings were in need of painting and caulking.
On appeal, the petitioner-owner asserted, in pertinent part, that
he never received an order from DHCR to make repairs in this
tenant's apartment, that the tenant was asked in November 1988 if
he had any problems in the apartment and he said the windows were
drafty, that by the tenant's own signed acknowledgment, new windows
were installed on November 2, 1988, but it was agreed that the
moldings would be painted when the entire apartment was due for
The petition was served on the tenant on June 19, 1989, but the
tenant failed to file an answer to the petition.
After a careful consideration of the entire evidence of record the
Commissioner is of the opinion that the administrative appeal
should be granted.
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.
A review of the record reveals that in transmitting the tenant's
complaint to the owner, the Rent Administrator used an incorrect
zip code. Since it is not certain that the owner received the
complaint, the evidence and allegations raised for the first time
on appeal will be considered.
The tenant's complaint failed to specify deficient window moldings
but instead noted drafty windows; thus supporting the owner's
contention on appeal.
Inasmuch as deficient window moldings were the sole basis for the
rent reduction, the Commissioner finds that the Rent Administrator
erred by issuing the order of March 10, 1989.
The Commissioner notes that the inspection, held on February 9,
1989, also supported the owner's contention that all other repairs
were made in a workmanlike manner.
The Commissioner further notes that the tenant did, in fact, sign
an acknowledgment attesting to the owner's installation of new
windows on November 2, 1988.
Any rent arrears due as a result of this order may be paid in
twelve monthly installments.
The Division's records reveal that the owner's rent restoration was
granted on September 21, 1989 (Docket No. DC210079OR).
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,
and the Administrator's order be, and the same hereby is, revoked
in accordance with this order and opinion.
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA