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Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

NYC Rent Regulation: Rent Control/Rent Stabilized, DHCR Practice/Procedures

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Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby sr77 » Sun Jul 08, 2018 10:59 pm

It was recently confirmed here that Window Guards and Lead-Based Paint notices are required to be returned to the landlord.

Are there any other notices or similar documents that also have to be returned?

E.g., an acknowledgment that "There is NO Maintained and Operative Sprinkler System in the Leased Premises" is one I've also received, seeking my "acknowledgement & signature."

Is that also required?

It's a bizarre notice, since it's worded as "being provided to me to help me make an informed decision about the Leased Premises in accordance with New York State Real Property Law Article 7, Section 231a".

Make what decision?

I guess maybe it's an invitation to terminate my tenancy because there's no sprinkler system. [?] How else to interpret it?

Also weird because there's already a clause in the renewal lease for this:

"10. Leased premises does __ does not __ have an operative sprinkler system. If operative, it was last maintained and inspected on __________________."

The "does not" is already marked with an 'X' on the form.

Thanks.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby TenantNet » Sun Jul 08, 2018 11:40 pm

You noted the notices on Window Guards and lead paint. Those are required by the city. There may be others, but none come to mind right now.

I've never heard of a notice regarding sprinkler systems. While there may be laws on sprinkler systems, I don't know of any form that must be completed and returned. Some landlords will say the notice is "required by law," but they don't specify which law. If that's the case I would ignore it.

I saw one situation where the LL wanted tenants to install supports for air conditioners in windows. That might be a good idea. But an inquiry to the Dept. of Buildings led us to a "tip sheet," which is neither a law nor a rule or regulation.

Other situations might involve self-closing doors, notices pasted to interior apartment doors, smoke and CO2 detectors and so on. City Council makes these things up all the time (and some may have merit). But in all these cases I've not seen any forms that are required to be completed and returned.

As for sprinklers, they are not required in all apartments. They might be required where there are no secondary means of egress, or in tall towers. Such requirements would be likely detailed in the NYC Building Code.

Does the form look like this? http://www.fingerandfinger.com/images/L ... inkler.pdf

So just Google RPL Section 231-a. You will find it is a notice the LL must provide.

The entire text of RPL Section 231-a reads:

1. Every residential lease shall provide conspicuous notice in bold face type as to the existence or non-existence of a maintained and operative sprinkler system in the leased premises.

2. For purposes of this section, “sprinkler system” shall have the same meaning as defined in section one hundred fifty-five-a of the executive law .

3. If there is a maintained and operative sprinkler system in the leased premises, the residential lease agreement shall provide further notice as to the last date of maintenance and inspection.


However there is no requirement the tenant must acknowledge receipt of the notice and return it to the LL. Arguably, if you give it back, then you won't have it anymore.

My advice ... ignore it.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby sr77 » Mon Jul 09, 2018 1:45 am

First time ever:

I pressed Preview and I was logged out, entire reply message gone.

Oh well…
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby TenantNet » Mon Jul 09, 2018 1:49 am

So don't press preview.

I usually copy/paste replies into Notepad just to have in case it gets lost.

No need to reply; just ignore the notice.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby sr77 » Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:12 am

> Does the form look like this?
> http://www.fingerandfinger.com/images/L ... inkler.pdf

The sprinkler notice was very close to that one. The differences were minor. The one I received had, centered at the top:

"THE REAL ESTATE BOARD OF NEW YORK, INC.
SPRINKLER DISCLOSURE LEASE RIDER"

Just on plain bond, no official stationery.

There is already a notice to the same effect in the building foyer. It's a brownstone that was gut-renovated in 2003, presumably exempt from any requirement for a sprinkler system.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby sr77 » Mon Jul 09, 2018 4:18 pm

TenantNet wrote:So don't press preview.

Is this a known issue with Preview?

Or, as another possible explanation, does tenant.net 'time out' sessions?
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby TenantNet » Mon Jul 09, 2018 5:29 pm

Never had a problem like you describe. Maybe it's on your computer.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby sr77 » Mon Jul 09, 2018 8:29 pm

TenantNet wrote:Never had a problem like you describe. Maybe it's on your computer.

Doesn't seem very likely. Might have just been an oddball glitch but I'm monitoring to see whether it happens again. Only once so far.

What prompted my question was that your initial reply was to not use Preview.

In case you didn't see it, the 'sprinkler' document you included as a link in your reply above was quite close to the one I received from the LL.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby Sky » Fri Jul 13, 2018 3:33 pm

TenantNet wrote:You noted the notices on Window Guards and lead paint. Those are required by the city. There may be others, but none come to mind right now.

...

I saw one situation where the LL wanted tenants to install supports for air conditioners in windows. That might be a good idea. But an inquiry to the Dept. of Buildings led us to a "tip sheet," which is neither a law nor a rule or regulation.



My experience is never sign anything other than the renewal lease document itself.
Unless I am mistaken, that was my understanding of your position also TenantNet. Do you suggest regulated tenants sign lead and window guard paperwork? Is your position different for tenants without children?

Also, do you have a DOB link to the AC tip sheet referenced above?
I recall some notices appearing in my building at some point in the past notifying tenants something along the lines of 'AC units need to be removed from windows unless they are installed in compliance with new DOB AC regulations'. I don't recall ever seeing any such DOB regulations. I'm not sure what the purpose of the building notice was for, it may have been just some arbitrary power technique by the management, but it may have scared some tenants into action. In any event I still see the same old (including some extremely sketchy AC supports in the building. Still, it would be useful to see any official DOB documentation on this issue.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby TenantNet » Fri Jul 13, 2018 4:24 pm

Yep, yep, yep...

The lead paint notice is supposed to be signed/returned by the tenant. Here's one example: https://www.garfieldbrooklyn.com/wp-con ... Notice.pdf

But I never have signed it (but I don't have kids living here). Windows guards is similar.

Just never sign anything other than the renewal unless actually required by a city/state law.

I can email you the tip sheet. As far as I can tell, it's a sheet on how to install AC the best way with proper supports. The LL says it's a law. I said no, it's not and please send me the actual law or regulation. They didn't. They also more or less demand one use their preferred vendor to install it (perhaps with a kickback). It can be installed easily by any tenant.

The support is probably a good idea and you can find them on Amazon for around $20 depending on the size of the AC.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby Sky » Fri Jul 13, 2018 4:40 pm

I got your tip sheet via email, thanks.
It also confirms for me that the AC issue is something that may likely have occurred citywide and my building management was simply reacting to that.

Thanks also for clarity on renewal lease stuff and that the status quo still holds.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby TenantNet » Fri Jul 13, 2018 4:48 pm

It's possible, but I scoured the DOB site for any actual law, and found nothing, I even called DOB and they didn't know of any law on this.

No one argues that ACs must be secure, but LLs have a way of citing laws that don't exist and pull crap like withhold lease renewals if tenants balk. Of course without a lease renewal, the rent can't go up.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby sr77 » Fri Jul 20, 2018 12:17 am

Sky wrote:My experience is never sign anything other than the renewal lease document itself.Unless I am mistaken, that was my understanding of your position also TenantNet.

Current situation:

Signed & returned both copies of renewal lease. Landlord (property mgr.) sent email refusing to execute without my also signing a number of other documents, claiming they were required, etc.

I replied stating that only the renewal leases have to be signed and returned.

Property mgr. replied, saying she was forwarding my reply to the landlord.

Nothing further since then (@ two weeks ago).

I expect that nothing further will happen before Aug. 1, the date that the renewal lease is supposed to go into effect. The landlord probably won't return an executed copy of the lease to me and will assume I'll just pay the increase anyway without it.

My plan, unless the advice here is otherwise, is to just continue paying the current rent, which the LL will of course object to, with threats of one kind or another.

What are the recommended steps to take at that point (or before)?

Thanks.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby TenantNet » Fri Jul 20, 2018 2:03 am

If LL refuses saying other documents are required, then ...

Send him back an email asking what law requires you sign and return them, ask him to cite the actual law and give you a URL or copy of it.

If he's a typical LL, he'll have apoplexy and still refuse to execute and return the lease. In my opinion that's OK (for rent stab tenants) as your rights and leasehold do not depend so much on the lease itself, but the law. There's plenty of case law that says when a tenant signs and returns a lease offer (which you have done), that is a binding lease.

If that isn't enough, as long as the LL refuses to execute the lease, your current rent can't go up. That's actually a benefit of the LL acting as a jerk. See the reverse side of the DHCR renewal form RTP-8. (the renewal MUST be on a RTP-8 form). It's been many years since my LL gave me a renewal lease and my rent will not go up until he does so. It's his option.

You can - although not necessarily advised - file a complaint with DHCR for the LL's failure to renew a lease, but DHCR could take years to decide that. Even then the rent doesn't go up while you wait. The possible downside is that DHCR could ignore the law and rule against a tenant. It wouldn't be the first time DHCR ignores the law. Even if you decided to go that route, I would wait about 6 months before doing so.

You could - just to be safe, send a cert letter RRR to the LL asking that they execute and return the signed lease renewal that you have already returned to them (and send them another copy).

I'm assuming that when you returned the renewal, you send that cert RRR (always do that).

And in the letter state a) you have previously returned the lease renewal which is required, b) no other documents are required to be signed and returned, c) that you have asked for and not received any law that required you to return any additional documents, and d) that it is your "intent" to renew the lease for another term of 1/2 years. The word "intent" is often used in cases.

This puts everything on the record.

DO NOT PAY ANY ADDITIONAL INCREASE WITHOUT A NEW LEASE. Just don't do that. That would be like Trump giving into Putin. Seriously.
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Re: Which 'notices' are required to be returned to the LL?

Postby sr77 » Sat Jul 21, 2018 8:04 am

Thanks for your detailed reply.

TenantNet wrote:If LL refuses saying other documents are required, then ...

Send him back an email asking what law requires you sign and return them, ask him to cite the actual law and give you a URL or copy of it.

I had already done that, with no response to date (weeks later).

See the reverse side of the DHCR renewal form RTP-8. (the renewal MUST be on a RTP-8 form).

In my email (to the LL) I pointed out that I had not been sent actual RTP-8 forms but photocopies, both of which did not include the 2nd pg. (back side of the form).

You could - just to be safe, send a cert letter RRR to the LL asking that they execute and return the signed lease renewal that you have already returned to them (and send them another copy). I'm assuming that when you returned the renewal, you send that cert RRR (always do that).

Assuming the "cert/RRR" is just to ensure that the LL doesn't claim he didn't receive the signed renewal leases, in the current case the LL has already indicated receipt in its email replies. I've always returned renewal leases just by slipping them through the mail slot at the landlord's offices. One thing I've never had any problem with is the LL claiming I didn't return the renewal leases. With another landlord, that might (probably would) be different.

All of my communications with the LL have been 'via email' for some time, other than the renewal leases, which as mentioned I 'hand deliver.' My understanding is that for legal purposes an email is considered as valid as a standard letter, the obvious exception being when a signature is required.

The rent bill I just received for August (when the renewal is supposed to start) shows the current rent. 8)

I assume an oversight.
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