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Re: Roomate Nightmare

Posted by Hawk on January 19, 1999 at 13:57:53:

In Reply to: Roomate Nightmare posted by Catherine on January 19, 1999 at 12:03:12:

Dear Catherine:

I am assuming you live in NYC. If not the advice may or not be accurate.

First of all, I don't know enough facts. Is there a lease? Whose named in the lease? All three roommates? Is the apartment rent stabilized?

The lease should have a provision in it that explains everyones rights in the event one roommate wants to transfer her rights to the lease. Under the law this is known as an assignment. So look in the lease to see if there is any language about assignments.

BTW, what to you mean by: "My other roomate and I have always felt that the rent for each room was ridiculously unfair, and the person who's moving out is getting an incredible deal." Isn't the rent split three ways??

Depending on the language in the lease, you may have the right to refuse to allow this woman to assign her rights to the apartment. (You also have a strong argument that even if she can assign her rights to the lease, she can't assign her room -- again, see if lease says she has rights to the apartment as a roommate or that particular room.) You really want to prevent her from giving the better room to a stranger. Obviously, the remaining roommates want to be able to select the room for the next roommate, the rent amount the next roomate should pay (if your rent stabilized you can charge any amount you want; if you were subletting [your not physically living in the apartment at the same time as a roommate], you could only raise the rent by 10%, and most importantly, you want to be able to select the next roommate. (It is obvious that you must be in a position of selecting the next roommate, so, even if the bad roommate has the right to assign, you must insist on having final and absolute say on the next roommate. Clearly, the bad roommate is not likely to consider the compatability of the next roommate because she is leaving. But you and the remaining roommate certainly want to be sure that the next roommate is not a psyco.

Lemme know the answers to these questions.

Good luck!

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