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Re: preferential rent agreement

Posted by Anna on September 14, 1999 at 23:14:27:

In Reply to: preferential rent agreement posted by jeannine sabo on September 14, 1999 at 11:02:36:

: I am in a rent stab apt. since 94. in 96 i was given a preferential rent by my previous landlord
: for $130 less everymonth. it was a verbal agreement. i have never been presented with a lease renewal
: and they are suing me for 6,000 for the past 2 years and an eviction notice. they have been cashing my checks for the
: preferential amount willingly for the past 4 years. this was a verbal aggreement. the only thing i have in writing is their tenant leger showing that in
: 97 they waived all late fees ($75/month) and the 130 as well.

: i need a good attorney i think

Yes. All tenants need a good attorney! Most of us can't afford them....

If your landlord's ledger recorded the rent due at the preferential rate or recorded both a debit for the 'official' rent plus a credit for the $130 difference, you have a strong case. Ditto: both debits and credits for the late fees? What does your lease say about late fees?

Also: the landlord is required to register both rents with DHCR: have you got the Rent History from them yet? call them (or go in person if you have already received the Petition because you have only 5 days to answer that)

If you have to file an oral answer before you hire an attorney: always include General Denial (landlord will have to prove everything he wrote), Improper Service (how they delivered the papers), Stale Rent (you said the $130 & late fees are more than 6 months old), and Warranty of Habitality (never saw an apt that didn't need repairs: have they painted every 3 years?). Read the pamphlets in the NYC Housing Court section on TenantNet for Non-Payment Evictions. Some things have changed a little in court, but it's very well written good advice. And get to a tenant clinic before the first court date.

DHCR's website: to read about the registration:

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