The Real Deal New York

Do-nothing landlords face penalties under bill

But some say fees will make it harder for building repairs to be made

May 14, 2014 10:15AM

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ritchie-torres

From left: Antonio Reynoso and Ritchie Torres

City Council members Ritchie Torres and Antonio Reynoso are set to unveil a bill today that would enact harsher penalties for some of the city’s worst landlords.

The bill, called the Quality Housing Act, would double the size of the Alternative Enforcement Program, which pinpoints properties with the most violations. Landlords who fail recurring inspections for the same violation would be hit with fees. Currently, it’s up to the Housing Preservation and Development Department or the tenants to take the landlord to court, the Wall Street Journal reported. Landlord advocates said the extra fees will make it harder for them to pay for building repairs.

“In a situation where the rents themselves are too low or you have tenants who have withheld rent for a variety of reasons, instead of trying to identify the owner as a bad guy, the solution is for the city…to come in and try to find out what the hell is going on,” Joseph Strasburg of the Rent Stabilization Association told the Journal. [WSJ]Mark Maurer

  • TefExpat

    THE NEW BABY DADDIES ARE HERE!! (Formerly known as landlords). Housing and breeding Democratic voters for these ‘lawmakers.’ Got it.

  • Flipoutnyc

    doesn’t Antonio Reynoso have a stpid look on his face or the new law that makes him look stpid

  • oh well

    Isn’t it going to be impossible to make repairs if the money is earmarked to paying punitive fees instead?

    And didn’t the city up its budget to afford more lawyers to review all these proposed bills?

    I guess if the city is intent in creating a situation where tenants are empowered to bankrupt rightful owners with costly repeated repair issues so that the tenants are justified in either purchasing the building for one dollar or a tenant advocate group gets to do so and then not have to pay the very same expenses in running the building, there is no objection by law enforcement, correct?

    • TefExpat

      Getting landlords out of the way for a tenant take-over is absolutely a City strategy.

  • JB

    Would like to see legislation that deals with the other side of the issue. Is the City still going to issue penalties when the repair has been completed, signed off by the tenant and then the tenant refuses access for HPD’s reinspection? That’s right. The violation stays on record even when the work is done. Note to the housing advocates and the legislators: when reviewing buildings with violations, look for the “No Access” moniker. Those are repairs have been done but HPD can’t verify it because the TENANT, not the landord, won’t allow access. Don’t just add up the numbers of A, B and C violations. Take the time to truly understand what is going on… for once.

  • SanFran is tougher on tenants

    There has to be quid quo pro penalty for tenants who repeatedly sabotage their apartments. There has to be something about tenants who create costly situations like removing bedrooms, flooding not just their apartments and the one below them but pouring hot water down the public stairways (on videotape) and installing illegal electrical situations that will cost more than their monthly rent to rectify if they refuse to make the corrections themselves.
    This is all about stealing the building for themselves when they will certainly have no problem converting into condos and selling their owned units (a dollar goes a long way in protenant NYC) so they can retire to Hong Kong.

    It’s not innocent, ignorant working class immigrants. They have to be held to the same standard of taking care of their rented premises as market rent tenants.

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