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HPD complaint extensions

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HPD complaint extensions

Postby Farfromseaman » Wed Aug 30, 2017 6:26 am

I received a letter from the landlord stating I needed to give them access to the apartment everyday. I made sure someone was available everyday from 9 to 5pm. I did not realize at the bottom of the letter it stated to call the property manager upon receipt. My question is, am I able to request an extension to repair violations or will I now be subjected to paying for all repairs?
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Re: HPD complaint extensions

Postby TenantNet » Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:23 am

First, tell us if you are rent stab, or unregulated, or in some other type of housing. That might impact what your rights are.

LLs can demand occasional access for a variety of reasons, but not every day. THe request must be in advance, in writing, and must state the reason for the access. It must be reasonable, and at reasonable hours. See the Forum's reference section at viewtopic.php?f=15&t=4837

You don't need to call the property manager, if that's your worry.

Why would you pay for any repairs? You don't explain all that's going on? Had you requested certain repairs? Is there a court order or stipulated agreement for repairs? Please fill in all the blanks here.
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Re: HPD complaint extensions

Postby Farfromseaman » Wed Aug 30, 2017 2:32 pm

I am not rent controlled, I am deregulated paying preferential rent.

I should have been more clear. I called 311, an inspection was done, violations were cited.

Someone came in do electrical work, and cut and re-mount a backsplash. The person who I left in my apartment to allow access was unsure about the cutting and re-mounting of the backsplash and said he should talk to me, that was August 7. The electrical work was done that day.

That is when I received a letter stating I denied them access and would therefore need to give them access starting August 16 from 9-5 everyday until the work was completed. If they did not have access and the landlord was fined, I would be responsible for that fine.

The super was on vacation apparently through out this month until this past Saturday. My apartment has been open and available everyday and things still need to get done. I believe they had 30 days to complete, which would be about 9/5. I am not sure if they are trying to scare me or they do have this right. I'm trying to avoid paying any fines when I have done exactly as I was asked. After much research, I find myself very ignorant as to what I can and cannot do. At this point they have the upper hand and I thought maybe trying to request an extension for repairs - to save myself - should be done.

I will check the feed stated in your response, and thank you for letting me know I do not have to contact the property manager.
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Re: HPD complaint extensions

Postby TenantNet » Wed Aug 30, 2017 2:59 pm

It is impossible to be deregulated AND pay a preferential rent. PR ONLY exists for Rent Stab tenants, which by definition are regulated. Check your lease - see what it says about your RS status - and get your rent history from DHCR.

As for violations, then obviously the LL will want access in order to make repairs. It's probably not every day forever, but just until the repairs are completed. You can negotiate with them as to which days and what time. You can insist that you are present each time. You absolutely should do that, and in our opinion you should make sure the LL does not have keys (there are pros and cons to that). But you have to be reasonable with the LL as to dates/times.

Make sure you take photos of before and after, and try to take photos of the people at work (do it surreptitiously so they don't get spooked). You can also leave a smartphone on to record the conversation(s). Even better to have a witness.

Claiming you denied access is a favorite LL tactic. Of course it's bullshit. I would send a letter back to them telling them they are being jerks, and asking how could access be denied when they came in and partially did the work. The only reason people send letters is so a Judge can read them if the issue ever gets to court. Don't get upset over that. They do it to everyone.

I would not get into an argument over that. That's what they want. Of course you have a reasonable explanation (as you've stated above). Just understand it's their intimidation.

BTW, you will NOT be responsible for the fine if you are RS, and most likely not if you are unregulated. That's the LL being a jerk again, using scare tactics. My LL has been trying to collect something similar for the last 7 years or so. Remember, they need a court order to get it. That would be unlikely in Housing Court as a fine is not considered to be "rent."

I would negotiate access on your terms, not theirs. I tell my LL when to show up, what time and what day. I usually give them 3 days from which to choose. Put that on paper.

As for the 30 days, that's a bit of hyperbole. Nothing really bad happens if they don't.

I would say something like:

Dear Mr. LL:

I note you have not made any attempts to finish the work your repairmen already started. A number of items still remain to be done (list them). I have been here waiting for them to show up as they said they would.

Accordingly, I am offering the following 3 dates/times for access:

Monday Sept __ at 9 AM
Wednesday Sept __ at 9 AM
Friday Sept __ at 1 PM (I give them an afternoon alternative).

In order to lock in the date you choose, you must let me know - IN WRITING - at least 48 hours prior to the date in question.

If I don't hear from you prior to the 48 hour deadline, or if they don't show after one hour, I will cancel the time for that day and forward a new complaint to 311.

Yours truly,
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Re: HPD complaint extensions

Postby Farfromseaman » Wed Aug 30, 2017 3:47 pm

Thank you so much. As common as these situations are, it is really difficult to find someone who has been in a similar situation and can tell you what they learned form their experience. I was afraid writing them back would seem as retaliation and they would continue to find ways to cloud my rational thinking.

It has been made aware to me that my LL is a very rich entity, I want to make sure I take the right steps in defending my rights.

Again, THANK YOU!
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Re: HPD complaint extensions

Postby TenantNet » Wed Aug 30, 2017 4:29 pm

They're all rich. So what! They still have to follow the rules. Read the thread on LL access in the Reference section.
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