Posted by Billy on March 22, 1999 at 17:34:10:
Hi I am a tenant in Queens NY and I have been renting an apt in the attic of a 2 family house for several months now. There is no lease - this is a month to month tenancy.
The landlord recently got sick and told me that his son wants to move back into the house to take care of him and that consequently they want me to leave the apt. I don't want to leave especially since I just spent alot of money remodelling the apt.
Also, I just recently found out that this attic apt is actually an illegal apt -- this is supposed to be a 2 family house but the landlord is illegally renting out the basement and the attic (in addition to the 2 legal floors). I have a copy of the Cert of Occupancy which proves this and my apt and the basement only has one entrance/exit which I know is illegal, since it must have 2 entrances/exits.
I have read alot on this tenant.net website about how a tenant in an illegal multiple dwelling does not have to pay rent, and that the landlord cannot take me to housing court and instead must take me to the local civil or supreme court through an ejectment action which would take at least 6 months.
Does this mean that I could stay here without paying rent for 6 months? Or can the landlord use other means to evict me? I know he can't go to housing court. Someone told me he could get a Vacate Order for the apt from the Dept of housing, in which they would order me to leave because the apt is not legally habitable (because of its illegal status and lack of fire exits etc).
Is this true? WHat are my options here? What else can the landlord do to get rid of me? Do you think I should seek legal help?
Any help is very much appreciated.
Thank you in advance.
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