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Key Fob System

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Key Fob System

Postby 8Figure » Sat Nov 03, 2018 12:13 pm

Our new landlord changed the front door lock to a key fob system last year. Recently we had a power outage in the building and the key fob system didn't work. The front door stayed locked and tenants couldn't get in. Does the law require a back up system for key fobs? The landlord doesn't seem to care that a power outage means we are locked out of our building (unless we can contact someone in the building via phone to let us in). This seems dangerous if it happens in the middle of the night. During this recent power outage it took 3 hours for maintenance to show up.
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Re: Key Fob System

Postby TenantNet » Sat Nov 03, 2018 12:46 pm

I've not heard of the power outage issue before, although court and DHCR decisions do allow LLs to install keyfobs as alternatives to traditional keys.

One way around that would be to have the system install a battery backup that can handle short-term outages.

This is a real problem if it drags on for a long time, but if - as you say - maintenance arrived within 3 hours and presumably it was operational shortly after that, I doubt any court would award an abatement or rent reduction for such a small time period. Welcome to NYC. If it were my LL, they would ignore it for weeks.

Yes, the law requires operational entrances and exits. But technology will fail on occasion. What matters is how the problem is handled.

A considerate LL would get someone to man the door during the time the power was out. Did this happen? Could tenants call the super via the intercom or by telephone? Were any signs posted. All this can point to a LLs good faith.

If you have a tenant association, they/it can approach the LL to set up protocols on how future outages are handled.
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