There are many rules and regulations that govern the landlord/tenant relationship in New York. These rules are in place to help protect tenants and ensure that the building is fit and safe to live in. However, these rules and regulations can also sometimes cost the landlord more money. As landlords often earn their income through these rentals, they may want to maximize their returns and cut corners in order to save some money.
This is illegal and can, in some cases, put the tenants in danger. So, tenants may start by making complaints to the landlords to see if they will make the appropriate changes, but this may prove useless. Tenants may have no other choice but to go to the authorities to report the violations. This oftentimes will get the landlords in trouble, which most likely will upset the landlords and cause landlord/tenant disputes. They may try to get rid of the tenant who reported the violations. However, this type of retaliation is also illegal.
Landlords are prohibited from retaliating against tenants for reporting violations to authorities, as well as for enforcing their rights under a lease or participating in tenant organizations. This retaliation could be overt, such as trying to evict the tenant for these activities, or it could also be in the form of harassment to try and get the tenant to break the lease. If a landlord does this, the landlord may need to pay the tenant damages for doing it.
There are many tenants in New York who know their landlords are violating the law or the terms of the lease. It is appropriate for tenants to want these violations remedied and if the landlord does not do it on their own the tenant may have to report it to authorities.
Source: ag.ny.gov, "Tenants' Rights Guide" accessed on Oct. 17, 2017