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Re: Illegal apartment??

Posted by Mr B on March 23, 1999 at 14:13:14:

In Reply to: Illegal apartment?? posted by JohnF on March 22, 1999 at 22:15:33:

: What constitutes a multiple dwelling. I live in a 2 family (??) house. The owners prior to this LL constructed an addition of 2 more apartments in the rear of the house, it was converted from a garage. The certificate of occupancy doed not reflect this. This is a corner house, with multiple addresses, (Avenue and street).

: My questions are:

: 1) What is the status of this house? What catagory does this house fall into.(Private ??? or something else ???)

: 2) I received a holdover petition today, and it claims this a 2 family house, but there are the 2 illegal apartments, one of which is occupied. What is my recourse?

To find out what the status of the house is, you need to check the Certificate of Occupancy or obtain a property profile overview from the Dept of Buildings. You can obtain the overview by fax by going to the Dept of Buildings website (
If this is a two family house and they have 2 illegal apartments, then this property could be deemed a defacto illegal multiple dwelling which basically means that technically it's a 2 family, but it's being used as a multiple dwelling. This is an important distinction, because if it is deemed an illegal multiple dwelling, the landlord CANNOT take you to housing court, cannot initiate a holdover proceeding, and cannot use housing court at all. You could call the Dept of buildings and get them to conduct an inspection. By the way, do you knwo if the apt you're living in is legal? Because if it isn't, you might be asked to leave because the DOB might label the apt unsafe for habitation. I suggest you check out Claire Shulmans web page on illegal conversions at (
After you do this little bit of reserach you should have a better idea where you stand.

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