Williamsburg tenants finally wrap up landlord dispute

172 N. 8th Street in Williamsburg
172 N. 8th Street in Williamsburg

Five displaced residents of a rent-stabilized Williamsburg apartment building may be returning home after a four-year battle with their landlord, the New York Daily News reported.

The residents of the eight-unit building at 172 North 8th Street, between Bedford and Driggs avenues, were ousted in June 2009 when the building’s foundation was deemed unstable.

The tenants been fighting to return home ever since.

The tenants charged that landlord Jamal Alokasheh performed illegal foundation work to intentionally damage the structure in a scheme to run them out of the building, which is rent-stabilized, and take advantage of inflated rents.

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Prior to the removal, one tenant paid about $1,100 a month for her four-room railroad space, while another paid only $300 a month for her apartment—well below the $3,000 a one-bedroom can demand per month in the neighborhood.

The five renters took Alokasheh to court. In late 2010, the judge sided with the tenants. A court-appointed administrator oversaw the project, and a city agency pitched in almost $500,000 to fund the repairs.

If repairs are completed on schedule, the tenants could be moving back as soon as this month. [NYDN] – James Comtois