Posted by Provost on October 22, 2001 at 21:40:04:
In Reply to: Re: rent reduction due to wtc/power outage posted by South Seaport Resident on October 22, 2001 at 19:42:39:
The fire and casuality section of most leases I've seen basically state that the tenant is released from the lease if landlord is unable to provide habitability for more than 30 days due to fire or casualty. Maybe yours is different, you'd have to give it a read.
Realize that the landlord's insurance, if any, and any federal aid, would only cover him for an actual loss he suffered. The landlord's insurance never covers the tenant's possesions; that is what renter's insurance is for (renter's insurance usually covers the cost of a temporary abode for a certain time, in situations such as this.) Did you have renter's insurance prior to the tragedy ?
I've heard of landlords paying for things related to actual damages, like HEPA vacuuming inches of dust off of apartment floors. But given the situation you describe, I don't think its likely you or the landlord should expect any windfalls.
: They were out due to the attack. I know of course that this wasn't the landlord's fault but was told by FEMA that he will most likely be filing for assistance with the govt. or his insurance company and he should be passing part of any reduction he receives on to the tenants.
: We did receive credit from ConEd and Verizon, but still ended up staying elsewhere for the week after the attack due to the outages and problems getting in and out of the area (even with proper i.d., on foot). I know this is very minor compared to others effected by the tragedy, but we also feel we have a right to what the law states according to the Fire and Casualty section of the lease, that there should have been an immediate rent reduction. We'd rather not have to take the time and pay legal fees but our landlord has already told those who asked that there would be no reduction. If he's filing for Federal aid or an insurance claim, I don't believe it would be "free rent"; as tenants I would guess we bore the brunt of the inconvenience.
: : Why was the power and phone out - was this something the landlord did, or were the service providers (Con Edison and Verizon, respectively) unable to provide service due to the attack ?
: : Sure you can take this to court if you want, but a judge might not look kindly on your using the Sept. 11 tragedy in an attempt to get free rent. Legal fees & time would costly.
: : Why don't you just call the ConEd and Verizon and have them give you a credit on your bill for the period of no service?
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