Posted by brenda on March 21, 2000 at 18:52:47:
In Reply to: NYC rent stab. raise greater than 2 or 4% posted by Todd Schwarz on March 20, 2000 at 15:58:13:
Just one thought to add to what Mark indicated. I believe--someone please tell me if I am wrong! --that in situations such as you've described, the landlord can be hit with treble damages by the DHCR. Seems like an open-and-shut overcharge case and the DHCR (though pro-landlord etc.) will definitely side with you.
To avoid a drawn-out fight with your LL, you might want to write the landlord a POLITE (non-threatening) letter calmly saying something like, "I am sure this was a misunderstanding, that it was unintentional that you sent me the lease too late and for the wrong amount. The rent should actually be X and the lease term should begin on date X, not the date in the lease. As you know, leases must be sent out X days before the lease term ends, and overcharges are subject to triple damages." Send it certified, return receipt requested. That way you have proof the overcharge was willful, if he sticks to his guns. You can send the DHCR a copy of the letter and say, look, I told him he was overcharging me.
It is possible the guy is just ignorant, and that your letter will cause him to totally capitulate, particularly if he calls the DHCR or a lawyer and he is told that you are right.
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