Posted by Sam on March 07, 1999 at 12:45:07:
In Reply to: Shared Meter? Landlord pays ALL posted by Maureen on March 07, 1999 at 11:34:51:
: Hi! I live in a hole in Queens. A legal 2 family which has a family also living in the illegally converted cellar.
I was in an illegal cellar apt on a three year lease & didn't even know it!
There are things you can do. First, read about it here on Tenant.net. Three-family houses are either legal or illegal: multiple dwelling is defined as three units or more. There must be a valid Certificate of Occupancy for it. The law is in the MDL, Multiple Dwelling Law, I think. Use the search feature on the main page and again on the housing court decision page. Search for things like 'cellar', 'basement', 'family', 'three-family', 'C of O', 'certificate of occupancy'. Warning: if it is found to be illegal, the solution could be to order all or part of it vacated (but you're planning to leave soon right?). And go to 'Buildings' on the NYC website in the drop-down menu: chose 'illegal conversions' to read about your situation. Click on link below. You will then be better armed to decide to take action or not, now or later. Talking to a Tenant Group in your neighbourhood or from the list on Tenant.net can help too.
ps: also search for your bad conditions in Tenant.net: roaches are 'vermin', some laws include all buildings, some all dwellings, some only multiple-dwellings. and although Central Complaints 960-4800 sounds like one-stop-shopping, it isn't: it sometimes works for MDL & HMC violations. Building Code violations: Dept of Buildings. Window Guards: required for children under 10: Dept of Health 212 676 2158.
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