Posted by Jerry on January 06, 1999 at 07:48:55:
In Reply to: Techno musician below...what to do?? posted by john birge on January 06, 1999 at 01:39:22:
The problem you pose is not easily resolved. In Besser v. Beckett, the Appellate Division that covers your living area, decided in Sept. 98, that a tenant who had been giving voice lessons and bothering other neighbors could conduct such lessons Mon through Fri from noon to 5:00 p.m. and Sat. from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
However, if you can establish that the noise emanating from the musician's apartment is of such a high level, you may be entitled to what is called "nuisance abatement-type relief," in which case you may be able to force your landlord to install soundproffing and you may be entitled to an abatement (reduction) of rent, if you can prove a breach of the warranty of habitability. This seems like the kind of situation that requires the intervention of an attorny. (As a first step, you should send the landlord a letter by certified mail, detailing the problem, how long it has lasted, that you spoke to whomever 6 months ago, etc. and specifically requesting that the landlord take affirmative steps to stop this problem. The landlord may be able to offer you another apartment in the same or a different building.)
Addressing you other concern, as a rent stabilized tenant you are automatically entitled to a renewal lease. Your landlord was required to return a signed copy to you within 30 days after you returned the renewal lease offer to the landlord that you signed. Don't worry; without an actual written lease renewal signed by your landlord, your lease is automatically deemed to continue on the same terms and conditions as the prior lease. You could either send another certified letter to your landlord requesting that it return your renewal lease, and/or DHCR has an appropiate complaint form. In the event the landlord is setting you up and is playing games and it intends to try and evict you, claiming that you refused to sign your renewal lease, the Housing Court judge will almost certainly give you a final opportunity to sign your renewal lease. Judges do this to prevent the loss of tenancy rights by a landlord who may be playing the game of secretly refusing to return the renewal lease to the tenant as a ploy to recover a rent stabilized apartment. Good luck.
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