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Stick to the point.

Posted by chelsea on September 24, 2000 at 13:56:34:

In Reply to: Fair trade, but here's why it may not work posted by Philosopher Ted on September 23, 2000 at 23:27:10:

This tenant asked for an opinion on a possible quid pro quo, not a diatribe against rent regulation. If the rent was decreased by $300 (I don't see anything in either posting about no increase for six years) it was probably because the landlord was overcharging. Rent stabilization has plenty of margin for profit, paint and other maintenance built in. When the building changed hands, each buyer certainly factored the operating costs into the purchase price, or should have, and became responsible for the obligations of the previous owner, including the security deposit.

On the paint-for-abatement proposal itself, I think the best thing would be for the tenant to write the landlord a letter formally requesting painting. If the landlord agrees to paint it, that's great, the tenant can just return the already purchased unused paint. Or if the landlord is at all open to it, maybe the letter requesting paint would open up a chance to try your proposal. (He probably just wants to get the tenant out at this point however.) If he doesn't paint, the tenant will have documentation that the request was made. If the landlord doesn't remove the charge, let him go to court to try to recover the $600 (depending on how strong the case is for the abatement). If he doesn't and keeps charging you, consider withholding the last one or two months rent if you ever decide to move out. Search for more information on collecting annual interest owed on security deposits.

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