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Ceiling falls= Rent reduction?

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Ceiling falls= Rent reduction?

Postby drawforfun » Mon Aug 26, 2002 11:46 am

This is a long story but basically I want to know: 1.) Am I entitled to a rent reduction? 2.) How much if so? 3.)Can I withhold rent? 4.) Can I sue?

I saw bits of debris and dirt in my tub. Looked up, saw a portion of the bathroom cieling come down slowly. Backed up against the wall, 2 seconds later a 14 by 24 inch portion of the cieling came down as well as debris,sand,PORTIONS OF HEAVY CONCRETE, and discarded bathroom tiles from upstairs' construction. Basically, the people who live upstairs have had a history of overflowing their tub. The landlord has said he had threatened to take them to court if they ever repeated this mistake. That's why they brought in workers he didn't approve who proceeded to redo their floor and remove their sink. There was water leakage when they did that, and additionally the workers dumped all the tiles/debris of the job INTO THE HOLE and it all fell into my bathroom. Our landlord told us if we ever noticed any damage before we took the apartment to contact him. Prior to the cieling incident I've seen nothing.
This was Thursday night. The Super and my neighbor across the hall calmed me down and cleaned my bathroom for me. Hinting that I shouldn't make a big deal and that they would fix everything and there was really no need to contact our landlord over this. I scoured the place til 3 in the morning and showered off all the debris from the cieling without incident. BUT Friday night after work, I come home and there is grey sludge cement and more debris in my tub. I contacted the landlord Saturday morning. He then informed me the super and my neighbor had an agenda for calming me down. They are both related the family upstairs that have been causing all these problems!!! Then my landlord refused to offer me a rent reduction. Our lease stipulates we are entitled to one if a portion of our apartment becomes unusable. He claims it's only if he doesn't try to do anything and he's gone as far as to label my problem cosmetic. Further more, Sunday they were finally able to fix it because they had to WAIT until upstairs was done to start the job. AND NOW the plaster from the sheetrock they put up to fix my ceiling is LEAKING. And I have missed a day from work (and thus one day of pay) because I am waiting for the landlord to come see the problem.

Bottom line: This is my first aparment. I'm 22. I'm female. Are people trying to take advantage of me? And what can I do? It's not the money thing, it's become a matter of principle now.
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Aug 26, 2002 1:01 am
Location: Park Slope

Re: Ceiling falls= Rent reduction?

Postby Lilly » Mon Aug 26, 2002 11:50 pm

Take photos, keep a written log, send letter to landlord describing everything, include dates, times, and what happened,send by certified mail, return receipt to Landlord. Landlord has 10 days to fix the problem. BTW, the situation you are describing, repeated leaks due to negligence on part of upstairs neighbor, is grounds for their eviction and has been deemed an incurable nuisance
in at least one case I know of. As for rent reduction, not yet-only if LL, once notified,does nothing.
Posts: 251
Joined: Sat Mar 02, 2002 2:01 am
Location: New York City

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