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New York Landlord/Tenant Law Blog

Your right to safety as a New York tenant

Finding appropriate and affordable housing in New York can be a difficult thing to do. Real estate in the city and the surrounding areas can come with complications, and due to the age of many of these buildings, safety can be a concern as well. As a tenant or potential renter, you may find it beneficial to understand your right to safety.

There are many issues, particularly in older buildings, that can threaten your safety and health. Some of these may include the presence of lead paint, asbestos and more. You do not have to simply put up with these hazards, but your landlord has the responsibility of addressing these issues. Many tenants find it beneficial to seek guidance regarding the protection of their rights when dealing with these complex matters.

Can your landlord kick you out of your home?

Finding affordable housing in the right location in New York is a difficult process. It can take a long time to locate the right apartment for you and your family, and it can be disheartening to learn that your landlord is attempting to remove you from your home.

If you receive notice of eviction, you have rights. Whether there is a valid reason to ask a renter to leave or it is an attempt to illegally evict a person from the premises, tenants can take steps to protect their interests and act on their rights. If you believe you are experiencing unfair or illegal treatment in the form of an unlawful eviction attempt, you do not have to face it alone.

Do you know about these 2 rights you have as a tenant?

You probably don't need to be reminded that New York has one of the most expensive rental markets in the country. Perhaps you did your research regarding rent laws when you found your current place. You may even know what lines your landlord can't cross when it comes to that issue.

However, you may not be aware of other rights you have as a tenant. This article discusses two of those rights and what you can do if your landlord violates those rights.

Renters' rights when exposed to toxic mold

Many people living in New York rent homes or apartments, and many times, complications with landlords can make living situations difficult. As a renter, it is particularly important for you to be aware of your rights and how to protect them in the event that you need to confront the inappropriate actions or negligence of your landlord. 

Landlords are responsible for problems with the building that could cause renters harm. Whether that is structural damage or exposure to things that could make them sick, tenants do not have to live in unsafe conditions. One of the things that your landlord must address is toxic mold.

What are your rights as a disabled tenant?

If you have physical disabilities, finding housing that works for your specific issues and abilities can be complicated. Despite what some New York landlords think, there are certain laws in place that protect the rights and interests of disabled tenants. You may find it necessary to fight for your interests and your right to live in certain properties. 

Regardless of the type of disability you have, there are federal laws that allow you the right to apply for and live in any type of apartment or residential rental property. While there are certain things that a landlord can do to protect his or her interests, he or she cannot discriminate against you because of your disability.

In New York, when can landlords enter a tenant's home?

It can be tough to be a renter in New York. This is because landlords experience a lot of concern about destructive or illegal activities occurring on their property. This concern is understandable, but it does not give them carte blanche to invade the privacy of their tenants on an unreasonable and persistent basis.

Many landlord-tenant disputes occur because renters and property owners have differing opinions on their respective rights. If you are a renter who feels that your landlord is invading your home wrongfully, it is wise to familiarize yourself what just what is allowed and what is not on the part of your landlord. Fortunately, New York enforces strict rules on when and how a landlord may enter your home.

Do you know about 'succession rights' here in New York City?

Location, location, location. That's the Realtors' motto and people who rent in New York City understand this real estate concept better than most. Many of the city's apartments are rent-controlled or rent-stabilized. If you have a family member who lives in one of these apartments who dies, you may have "succession rights."

This means that you may be designated as the tenant of record if the apartment is rent-controlled, or if the apartment is rent-stabilized, as the leaseholder who can take advantage of renewal leases. Don't get too excited just yet, however. First, certain conditions must exist.

You have rights if your landlord does not maintain services

If you live in a rent-controlled dwelling in New York, you probably appreciate knowing that your rent will remain affordable throughout your tenancy. You may be wary of engaging in any kind of landlord-tenant dispute with the property owner because you want to keep your residence. We understand how you might not want to "rock the boat," but we also want to make sure you and others like you are aware of your rights.

First of all, as a tenant in New York, you have the right to live in a safe and properly serviced residence. This means that your landlord is required to maintain service on your residence. A few examples include repairing damaged plumbing, keeping the heating system functional and ensuring tenants have access to hot and cold water.

Are you an immigrant victimized by housing discrimination?

Landlord-tenant disputes in New York come in many forms. One of the most tragic of these forms is housing discrimination based on one's immigration status. What many immigrants do not know is that it is illegal for landlords to discriminate against them in any manner. This blog post will address important housing discrimination elements for those who think they do not have protection in the United States.

Examples of discrimination: If your landlord is engaging in any of these behaviors, you should consider seeking legal guidance.

  • Refusing you a rental
  • Lying about rental availability
  • Harassing, threatening, coercing or intimidating you
  • Interfering with your rights

Breaking your lease after suffering a disability

It is not often that one can predict when a disability will occur. In fact, a debilitating disease or accident often comes along suddenly, leaving you confused and frustrated as you try to wrap your head around your new reality. One of the factors you may be facing is how to break the lease on your apartment if your illness or injury has made it impossible for you to continue living there.

Are you now wheelchair-bound and unable to take the stairs to your walk-up or reach the cabinets in your kitchen? Does your illness or the illness of a family member mean you will have to move where help is available? Do you suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder that makes it impossible to remain in your New York City apartment where traffic and construction noises trigger your condition? Is there a way to break the lease without breaking your bank?