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Finders keepers?

Posted by tasha on August 14, 2001 at 11:32:54:

I have a new landlord. I live in queens, in a rent stabilized apartment. I live on the last floor of my apartment building. i've lived there for 12 years. Every once in a while in the past i've had to put things in the hallway that didn't fit into my apartment until i found a space to store them. When i got my new landlord i had a ladder in the hallway. I also (for years) had a plant stand, some plants two small rugs in the hallway for decoration and practicality. Last week my ladder was missing. I asked the new landlord about the missing ladder he denied knowing anything about a ladder and proceeded to say that the ladder should not have been in the hallway. (i've received no previous warning or request) now my rugs are missing. A first floor neighbor said she saw them in the garbage.
Isn't this theft? I know he is taking my things and throwing out whatever he doesn't want. If he would have simply asked me i would have moved them. He never mentioned them. Previous landlords haven't had a problem with me having things in the hallway as long as they weren't permanent. (the plants and rugs were never an issue) i didn't think there would have been one now.
My question, finally, is am i allowed to take out the expense of the ladder and the rugs from the rent? I wasn't asked to remove them and now he's in full denial of taking them but practiaclly stated that anything in the hallway belongs to him and he can do what he wishes with those items.

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