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blacklisting

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blacklisting

Postby chelsea » Sat Mar 02, 2002 7:13 pm

There's been a lot of discussion on this forum about owners of rent-regulated housing maintaining various "black lists" of tenants who were parties in housing cases. A tenant who considering trying to purchase a co-op apartment has asked me whether co-op boards consider such matters. Has anyone had any experience with this?

<small>[ March 02, 2002, 06:34 PM: Message edited by: chelsea ]</small>
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Re: blacklisting

Postby Cranky Tenant » Sat Mar 02, 2002 7:40 pm

The problem is, Housing Court is part of the public record, and anyone has access to that record. Landlord associations simply make it more readably available to their members. Also, these organizations aren't limited to people who own rent regulated apartment buildings. I'd imagine they would include anyone who owns real estate and is willing to pay the membership fee. So it's perfectionally plausable that co-op boards might use these services.
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Re: blacklisting

Postby <JJ> » Wed Mar 06, 2002 9:12 pm

Yes, someboards do use blacklists; sponsors generally don't.

ps: HC records may be public, but that does not excuse anyone automatically blacklisting an applicant just because thier nameis in that damn computer (which is what happened to me according to several brokers0. I suspect that some blacklists are compiled from the MARSHALLS' lists of warrants issued. This is also invalid as in my case, I did a settlement with 'warrant stayed until....) and the damn LL surprisedme by requesting that warrant two weeks prior to my move-out date so now I look like a deadbeat! And all I wanted was some heat in January 199x ...........
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Re: blacklisting

Postby ronin » Sat Mar 16, 2002 4:35 am

We've been working on a story about this issue. The blacklisting based on your name being in the computer is illegal. In part because they dont give tenants a chance to show that the record is incorrect or misleading as generally required under federal law. Basically the NY Real Estate industry is still living in 1930, as are our state laws. But no attorneys seem willing to address the issue, alas.

However, if you are willing to come on camera, we would like to hear your blacklisting story and possibly share it with our audience.

Feel free to learn more about our show at www.rentwars.com and can contact me through the website contact page.
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Re: blacklisting

Postby MikeW » Wed Mar 20, 2002 6:06 pm

Ronin,

It's a little disingenuous to state that a LL choosing not to rent to a particular person, due tho their inclusion in a public record is illegal, and then imply, as you do later in your post, that the state hasn't gotten around to making it illegal.

Face it, as of this point, it is perfectly legal. The only thing that would change it would be if someone managed to jam a bill through the state legistature and get Pataki to sign it. This isn't going to happen to soon. Or ever, for that matter.
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Re: blacklisting

Postby TenantNet » Thu Mar 21, 2002 12:30 am

Have to agree with MikeW. It's not illegal to check public records. I think the question Ronin might have been raising is whether or not it is legal to take the whole database then sell it -- without accurate mitigating information being included, just like they would be required to do on regular consumer issues. That is an issue that probably has yet to be litigated or addressed through the legislature. You're right about Pataki, but it would equally apply to the Democrats.
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Re: blacklisting

Postby chelsea » Thu Mar 21, 2002 9:06 am

Ronin referred to federal law, not state, so no New York legislative action would be involved (though I don't know if it would prevent use of a public database).

And while tenant.net never misses a chance to bash "the Democrats," ;) note that "the Democrats" don't have the power to sign a bill into law after it is passed by the Legislature, which was the statement here.
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Re: blacklisting

Postby <Red Zephyr> » Mon Mar 25, 2002 5:20 pm

The simple fact is that past evictions and judicial judgements are relevant indicators of the risk that a landlord or creditor is taking in doing business with you. And unless we're talking about a public housing project, you have no natural "right" to live on someone else's property. Landlords can use (almost) any criteria they wish when selecting tenants - just as tenants can use any criteria they wish when choosing an apartment. Of course, landlords who turn down too many applicants lose income while their apartments are vacant. So it works both ways.

I find it interesting that during discussions of public records one usually hears the cries of so-called "blacklists" but rarely do you hear of tenants being proactive and investigating a potential landlord.
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Re: blacklisting

Postby Cranky Tenant » Mon Mar 25, 2002 8:35 pm

Originally posted by <Red Zephyr>:
The simple fact is that past evictions and judicial judgements are relevant indicators of the risk that a landlord or creditor is taking in doing business with you. And unless we're talking about a public housing project, you have no natural "right" to live on someone else's property. Landlords can use (almost) any criteria they wish when selecting tenants - just as tenants can use any criteria they wish when choosing an apartment. Of course, landlords who turn down too many applicants lose income while their apartments are vacant. So it works both ways.

I find it interesting that during discussions of public records one usually hears the cries of so-called "blacklists" but rarely do you hear of tenants being proactive and investigating a potential landlord.
Yes it certainly would be interesting to put togehter some kind of tenant's resource, similar to TenantNet, where potential renters could find out how many times a Landlord has appeared in court, the number of violations, whether the apartments are regulated, etc.

A lot o tenants don't even know who their landlord really is. Maybe as more of these departmenta databases come online someone will consider doing this.
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