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Old 07-17-2010, 03:40 PM
 
Location: Brooklyn
1 posts, read 3,937 times
Reputation: 10

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Hi. I'm just looking for some advice from knowledgeable people about my situation. I've been living in the same basement apartment in Brooklyn for 3 1/2 years, completely unaware that basements were illegal to rent, until after my 2nd year there due to an incident with another tenant. But by that time, I was settled in, loved the neighborhood and running my business, and did not want to move out.

Recently however, my landlord has been trying all sorts of bullying tactics to get back rent from me, that a previous roommate owes, from October 2009. Prior to me receiving a petition of non-payment (actually a visiting friend was given it today, with it dated 6/23/10), I was under the impression that we struck a deal where I would repay the previous roommates debt in installments, once fall (2010) began, and I had money to spare.

Since October 2009, I've been paying my rent diligently till now, except for the month of May where I was $400 short after getting into a car accident; which he was going to get a check for this weekend. However on this notice of petition for non-payment dwelling, he has listed the past 6 months as being unpaid.

My second issue is that the landlord "name" on the petition is not who I write my checks to.

So my question is, one is this legal? Can he petition me for non payment for months I have paid for, and have proof of payment for, even if I still owe a small balance for one month?

Can the case just be thrown out once I prove I've paid with checks? Or will I be screwed anyway, because by fighting this case I'll be admitting to living in a illegal apartment and have to move? Please help if you have any advice on how to procede. I have two dogs and a business, and moving right now is the absolute worst thing that could happen right now.

Any and all advice will be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
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Old 07-17-2010, 07:11 PM
 
982 posts, read 3,846,799 times
Reputation: 498
If it's a truly illegal apartment then no rent is owed. That's only thing you have to prove if you respond in LL/tenant Court. Will you have to move? Eventually. It depends on how dangerous it is. the FDNY or DOB can evict if Tim Lynch the forensic engineer and vampire consider it life threatening. Sit tight however, it is unlikely that the LL will unleash hell on himself.

Last edited by modsquad81; 07-17-2010 at 08:01 PM..
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Old 07-18-2010, 12:22 AM
 
Location: NY,NY
2,899 posts, read 8,312,934 times
Reputation: 2021
Quote:
Originally Posted by brooklynartist View Post
Hi. I'm just looking for some advice from knowledgeable people about my situation. I've been living in the same basement apartment in Brooklyn for 3 1/2 years, completely unaware that basements were illegal to rent, until after my 2nd year there due to an incident with another tenant. But by that time, I was settled in, loved the neighborhood and running my business, and did not want to move out.

Recently however, my landlord has been trying all sorts of bullying tactics to get back rent from me, that a previous roommate owes, from October 2009. Prior to me receiving a petition of non-payment (actually a visiting friend was given it today, with it dated 6/23/10), I was under the impression that we struck a deal where I would repay the previous roommates debt in installments, once fall (2010) began, and I had money to spare.

Since October 2009, I've been paying my rent diligently till now, except for the month of May where I was $400 short after getting into a car accident; which he was going to get a check for this weekend. However on this notice of petition for non-payment dwelling, he has listed the past 6 months as being unpaid.

My second issue is that the landlord "name" on the petition is not who I write my checks to.

So my question is, one is this legal? Can he petition me for non payment for months I have paid for, and have proof of payment for, even if I still owe a small balance for one month?

Can the case just be thrown out once I prove I've paid with checks? Or will I be screwed anyway, because by fighting this case I'll be admitting to living in a illegal apartment and have to move? Please help if you have any advice on how to procede. I have two dogs and a business, and moving right now is the absolute worst thing that could happen right now.

Any and all advice will be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
Sifting through the facts....

a) You owe back rent, arrears.

b) You made a verbal agreement with the LL regarding a pay-out of the arrears.

c) Immediately subsequent to the verbal agreement, you failed to tender rent in a timely fashion and consequently your arrearage has increased.

Without any additional facts, I would say that any and all agreements with the LL regarding rents and arrears have been violated-----which is why you are being sued for all amounts owed.

IF the apartment is indeed "illegal", then you may not be held liable for the arrears and/or any due rent; but you will most likely have to IMMEDIATELY vacate. The apartment, if illegal, makes it VERY easy for the LL to complete eviction proceedings.

As far as you're being evicted, legal or illegal, you're options are simple, either move asap, or pay the landlord what you owe and continue the tenancy. It would seem the LL is pissed and rightly so. You made an agreement and are not living up to your end. NO ONE cares nor wants to here your EXCUSES!!!

Pay the LL, Pay him regularly, Pay him on time---probablems disappear.

Now, if there is an issue with income and what you can afford and not afford, then I think there are greater and deeper life decisions which you, apparently, may need to make regarding life and business.

Luck!
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Old 07-18-2010, 06:09 AM
 
982 posts, read 3,846,799 times
Reputation: 498
Quote:
Can the case just be thrown out once I prove I've paid with checks? Or will I be screwed anyway, because by fighting this case I'll be admitting to living in a illegal apartment and have to move?
Rereading: Yes it can be thrown out if you can prove payment. No you wont be thrown out (in Housing Court) if it's an illegal apartment and the petition is only for nonpayment.


jcoltrane says
Quote:
It would seem the LL is pissed and rightly so. You made an agreement and are not living up to your end. NO ONE cares nor wants to here your EXCUSES!!!
Easy to scold the tenant for not living up to his responsibilities and ignore the more important aspect that this apartment might be illegal and advise the poster accordingly.
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Old 07-18-2010, 07:14 AM
 
1,263 posts, read 2,065,162 times
Reputation: 508
Quote:
Originally Posted by modsquad81 View Post
Easy to scold the tenant for not living up to his responsibilities and ignore the more important aspect that this apartment might be illegal and advise the poster accordingly.
Seems that even when you acknowledge that the the tenant is reneging on his responsibilities, an acknowledgement which you rarely make, you ignore or dismiss it.
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Old 07-18-2010, 07:31 AM
 
982 posts, read 3,846,799 times
Reputation: 498
Quote:
Originally Posted by lamontnow View Post
Seems that even when you acknowledge that the the tenant is reneging on his responsibilities, an acknowledgement which you rarely make, you ignore or dismiss it.
I'm not dismissing it, but the ultimate responsiblility here, if we are to believe the OP, is that the LL entered into a contract under a falsehood.

If this is the case then all other facts: ex room mates car accidents etc. are completely irrelevant.
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Old 07-18-2010, 04:26 PM
 
Location: NY,NY
2,899 posts, read 8,312,934 times
Reputation: 2021
Quote:
Originally Posted by modsquad81 View Post
I'm not dismissing it, but the ultimate responsiblility here, if we are to believe the OP, is that the LL entered into a contract under a falsehood.

If this is the case then all other facts: ex room mates car accidents etc. are completely irrelevant.
Your post is completely non-sensical.

First, "entering a contract under a falsehood" isn't in any law book I've ever perused. The fact of the matter is that anyone petitioning the court for remedy MUST have clean hands. Obviously, a LL renting an illegal dwelling does not. Additionally, courts will not allow benefit from illegal acts. THIS is why a LL of an illegal dwelling is not entitled to rent, past, present or future regarding such a dwelling.

So, in order for rents due and owing to be discounted by the courts, the dwelling will need to have been found illegal by a court!

IF there is NO such finding, then the tenant owes all past and present rents----PERIOD!

So, given that both tenant and LL wish to continue the tenancy and circumvent the law----it is the illegality that is, in the words of the great legal scholar quoted above---irrelevant.

It is the issue(s) regarding rent and payment which are "relevant".

I'm sure your keen legal sense clearly highlights for you that it cannot be both ways. Either there is an illegality and no rents are due and owing; or, there is not an illegality and rents are due and owing.

Second, I deal in FACTS! The reality, as posted, is that the OP/tenant does NOT know, factually, whether the apartment is illegal---PERIOD! Though, we do know, factually, as stated by the OP/tenant, there are rents due and owing.
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Old 07-18-2010, 06:17 PM
 
982 posts, read 3,846,799 times
Reputation: 498
Quote:
Sifting through the facts....
You say:
Quote:
IF the apartment is indeed "illegal", then you may not be held liable for the arrears and/or any due rent; but you will most likely have to IMMEDIATELY vacate. The apartment, if illegal, makes it VERY easy for the LL to complete eviction proceedings.
I don't know what LL/tenant court you've been to but short of a hazardous condition plus the LL calling the FDNY/DOB down on himself there will be no immediate and "easy" eviction.

OP says:
Quote:
Since October 2009, I've been paying my rent diligently till now, except for the month of May where I was $400 short after getting into a car accident; which he was going to get a check for this weekend. However on this notice of petition for non-payment dwelling, he has listed the past 6 months as being unpaid.

My second issue is that the landlord "name" on the petition is not who I write my checks to.

So my question is, one is this legal? Can he petition me for non payment for months I have paid for, and have proof of payment for, even if I still owe a small balance for one month?
The "Facts" as you like to call them are the OP has paid with checks yet the LL is suing for all back rent. This alone will make the petition defective. Yet you choose to ignore this and simply dun him for not paying rent and give one of your gratuitous "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" lines, "Now, if there is an issue with income and what you can afford and not afford, then I think there are greater and deeper life decisions which you, apparently, may need to make regarding life and business."
Quote:
So my question is, one is this legal? Can he petition me for non payment for months I have paid for, and have proof of payment for, even if I still owe a small balance for one month?
This is maybe the most important fact you've chosed to ignore, OP says he owes only a portion of one month's rent. You don't think that's important?

You also conveniently ignore the fact that the name is different on the petition rendering it in all likelihood defective.

Quote:
entered into a contract under a falsehood.
This is not moot court, you know what I mean.

Quote:
Second, I deal in FACTS! The reality, as posted, is that the OP/tenant does NOT know, factually, whether the apartment is illegal---PERIOD! Though, we do know, factually, as stated by the OP/tenant, there are rents due and owing.
Once again, (from the top) In your Landlord slanted agenda you cherry pick what "facts" fit your mantra. "Pay your rent or get out, pay your rent or get out."

OP has indicated a verbal agreement to pay back rent. Valid up to a point or until proven otherwise.
$400 short until this weekend. The "fact" is if OP wishes to pay the 400 this weekend and LL accepts all this goes away because petition is defective not to mention approval as of this weekend of OP's tenancy.

It is obvious that you have never set foot into a LL/tenant court. Your answers are well written, neat, legally concise but bear no relation to what goes on there.
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Old 05-13-2011, 08:11 PM
 
1 posts, read 3,062 times
Reputation: 10
I hope people realize that there are many people who only own one or two small buildings. In my neighborhood there was a woman in her 80s who died of a heart attack likely brought on by the enormous stress that some judges put owners through. The tenant was a woman with two sons the older used to roam the roof and steal from apts and tag up all over. Why should this tenant be rewarded just for being in nyc and not paying her rent. Bad landlord ok no pay rent. Bad tenant no live in apt. It really is that simple. If the rent goes up move. Many of u dont remember when rents fell in nyc very fast. I dont think housing court judges in nyc forced tenants to pay no matter what cuz landlords were going broke. Why do u think there were so many suspicious fires during the late sixties and BTW if u mess with the housing authority u can be moved out right quick god knows the city likes its money esp w u know who as mayor. If there is even one member of a family involved in any manner of drug dealing selling etc or buying the whole family goes. No ifs and or buts no l and t judge tells the city what to do. So lets get real ok. Good landlords should be treated well by their tenants and good tenants should be treated well by their landlords. You cant make people good in court.
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Old 04-10-2018, 07:39 PM
 
1 posts, read 164 times
Reputation: 10
I rented an illegal basement apartment The kitchen doesnt have an oven or stove. i want to evict this tenant from the basement apt , because she is keeping garbage in side since she moved in october 2017. does not go to work, but she is paying rent for know. can i evict her before the lease expired. what is the possible penalty i have to pay for illigal apt. please help me !
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