Posted by S A on February 24, 1999 at 20:33:34:
Please bear with us that we have a story to tell which I am sure you will like. As you will see that we are not as lucky as most of you renters are. As a matter of fact we are down right unluckiest people around because we neither live in a rent controlled building nor we have rent stabilized apartment, we are renting an old house. Back in Nov 1998 the health department and the hospital called us notifying us of our two children been lead-poisoned. Department of environment also notified the Landlord of the violations (Old Lead paint etc) in his property. That was the day when this all begun… Thanks to "system" we now have two sick children and a 30-Day-Eviction- notice. … As to the Landlord we are the cause of his problem so we are now the damned ones.
We moved in this old house with a one-year lease about five years ago. After that lease expired he gave us another 2 years lease after a 10 months lap. This two year lease has expired some where last June. I asked the landlord for renewal of the lease last august. He said sure he will bring it up the next time he comes for the rent. Since than every time he came to collect his rent he forgets to bring up the lease. As you can see we do not have a written lease. And now he seems to have amnesia attack and don't remember any thing about offering us renewed lease. According to him he just want us "out".
We tried our best to work with him. We even moved in one-bedroom basement for the last four months with all of our kids to give his workers all the room they need to work upstairs while we still being charged for the full rent. But that is not enough for our land lord, before he used to say, "If you don't like the way the house is why don't you move." And now he made it official a "30-day-eviction notice" out of which we now only have 8 days left and that is what we have.
We went down to the courthouse a few days ago. The "friendly" clerk told us that there is not much we can do, after all he is the landlord and its up to him to give us the lease or not. She also said that he is the owner and if he doesn't want us there then we have to move and that come back to the court when you get the court papers---- what a help?.
In the last, let us just mention that on top of rent, we pay for heat, hot water, electric. Just about the only thing the Landlord pays is probably the property tax. You can imagine the house and its condition, with old windows and old doors heating bills are sky high. In the end… with the high rent and high heating bill there is not much left for our savings. So please don't tell us to get a lawyer, because we can not afford one and the one we can not afford wont be any good any way.
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