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Landlords pushing the envelope with eviction attempts

Posted by Anna on August 16, 1999 at 21:01:34:

We've noticed that for a while: since Albany passed the 20% vacancy allowance. Landlords are using any little reason, whether factual or not, whether it has a basis in law or not, , to begin holdover proceedings against long-term rent regulated tenants who moved into marginal neighborhoods and stayed, thereby making them safer and very desirable today...

One frequently used excuse is business use of the home. (One of my neighbors, a physically disabled book editor working at home, settled for a buyout rather than go through with the whole trial; he paid $750, the new tenant pays $2100.) It used to be well-settled that certain non-intrusive types of work were allowed and only noisy trades were prosecuted: like, a piano teacher, a cabinetmaker.

The NYLJ reports Tues on the unsuccessful attempt to oust an artist (painting, drawing) from his apt of 30 years, Civil Court, NY County.

"Although business use of an apartment can be grounds for eviction, the
use must materially affect the character of the building, materially
damage or burden the property or materially disturb the other tenants to
warrant eviction," Judge Ling-Cohan said.

There was no evidence that foot traffic in the building was increased by
Mr. Gotbaum's art work, nor that he had altered the apartment to
accommodate his work, the judge said. His painting and drawing could
be done without disturbing his neighbors, she added.

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