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Re: Desperately need advice on lease options - please help!

Posted by TenantNet on July 30, 1997 at 12:46:00:

In Reply to: Re: Desperately need advice on lease options - please help! posted by Scott Bowman on July 29, 1997 at 17:07:57:

: i tried also paying the rent, hoping
that I could at least live in my apartment peacefully without noise or
break-ins, even if I couldn't have appliances. I have offered to leave
and drop claims to any HP or harassment suit, but he won't agree to
let me leave, either. What are my options? Currently, I'm not allowed
to live there in peace or privacy; and I'm not allowed to leave either.
It doesn't make sense.

Of course you can leave -- anytime. In a normal situation a tenant can
leave but might be liable for the rent for the term of the lease. But
you can use your proof as the owner's breach of lease. He might sue you
for the rent, but his breach of lease should get you off the hook.
Just document everything and send him a notice of his breach. Also you
should speak with a lawyer just to make sure you do things right.

: ___________________________________

: Dear Jen G.,
: I can't answer all your questions.
: I can give you some good advise.

: The new law imposes a high penalty for harassment to a landlord.

The "new law" does very little if anything. Harassment has been on the
books for years and usually goes unenforced. this was a public relations
ploy by Pataki and Silver.

: I'll tell you how I solved this problem, but this is not a suggestion.
: I installed my own lock (at my own expense) on the door and refused to
: give a copy to the landlord. He said that I had to. I told him I wouldn't.
: He then said that he would drill my lock (the second lock) off the door.
: [Note that I didn't remove the original Building Lock].

By law the owner is entitled to a key, but there are other ways around

: If your apartment had a working stove and or refrigerator when you
: moved in or your lease simply says that it should, then go ahead and
: file forms for Rent Reductions with DHCR.

Not "when they moved in" necessarily, but on the base date -- which is
either 6/30/74 or 5/31/68. It a service was provided "on or after" the
base date, then it's required. However something like a stove or refrigerator
might be dealt with by Housing Court (quicker) even though normally
DHCR has sole jurisdication on services, but "bad conditions" can be
dealt with in Housing Court. If possible, avoid DHCR.

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