Tenants may have paid more than $30M in undue rent increases thanks to Trump’s tax schemes: NYT

One-time rent increases have been baked in over the years

TRD New York /
Dec.December 17, 2018 08:30 AM

Donald Trump, Fred Trump and the Beach Haven Apartments in Coney Island (Credit: Getty Images and Apartments)

Victims of the Trump Organization’s alleged tax-dodging scheme most likely paid tens of millions of dollars in undue rent increases over the past two decades, according to the New York Times.

In the 1990s, the future president and his siblings set up sham businesses that allowed them to increase rents on rent-regulated apartments, a Times investigation found.

But because those increases were baked into the base rent used to calculate the annual increase the city has approved on rent-regulated leases, tenants today are still paying for those unjust hikes.

Available records can’t give the full story of just how much the Trumps’ scheme cost tenants. But a onetime increase of $10 in 1995 on all the 8,000 apartments involved would work out to more than $33 million tenants have overpaid in rent since then, according to the Times.

“If they passed on phony costs to tenants, they should lower our rents,” said Jack Leitner, a tenant who has lived in the Beach Haven Apartments that Fred Trump built in Coney Island for more than two decades.

Trump did not respond to requests for comment from the Times.

The statute of limitations covering the Trumps’ alleged tax scheme expired long ago, but civil cases could still be brought. And tenants’ rights attorneys say current and former Trump tenants may be able to challenge past increases.

“If I was talking to those tenants right now, I’d say: ‘Do it. Go,’” said Michael Grinthal, supervising lawyer with the Community Development Project at the Urban Justice Center. “This case should be fought.” [NYT] – Rich Bockmann


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Make Greenland Great Again? Trump wants to buy Arctic territory

Make Greenland Great Again? Trump wants to buy Arctic territory

Make Greenland Great Again? Trump wants to buy Arctic territory
Hamptons’ priciest summer rental to host MAGA extravaganza next month

Hamptons’ priciest summer rental to host MAGA extravaganza next month

Hamptons’ priciest summer rental to host MAGA extravaganza next month
394 Vanderbilt Avenue (Douglas Elliman)

As weather heats up, Brooklyn luxury market doesn’t

As weather heats up, Brooklyn luxury market doesn’t
The threat of eviction hangs heavily above immigrant families who have lost work as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. (Getty)

Eviction bans don’t always protect the most vulnerable

Eviction bans don’t always protect the most vulnerable
President Donald Trump (Getty, iStock)

Trump tweets that he “may END” Obama-era fair housing regulation

Trump tweets that he “may END” Obama-era fair housing regulation
Seth Campbell (iStock)

Keller Williams to cut ties with top franchise owner following sexual harassment allegations

Keller Williams to cut ties with top franchise owner following sexual harassment allegations
Ghost Towers

NYC’s ghost towers: How many Manhattan luxury condos are owned by people who don’t live there?

NYC’s ghost towers: How many Manhattan luxury condos are owned by people who don’t live there?
Manhattan homes flooded the market last week but buyers are nowhere to be found 

Manhattan homes for sale nearly doubled last week

Manhattan homes for sale nearly doubled last week
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...