The presence of slumlords in a large metropolis like New York is an unpleasant fact. For people living in rent-stabilized apartments, landlord-tenant disputes are commonplace when a landlord is disreputable. Often, these landlords will engage in unethical or outright illegal activities in an attempt to push out the current residents. By getting the renters to leave, landlords will be free to move in new residents and collect a greater amount of rent.
In a city like New York, there are many "unregulated apartments." With these types of units, landlords aren't restricted with respect to how much they charge to lease an apartment.
New York tenants are entitled to basic rights surrounding the quality of their living conditions, as laid out in the Warranty of Habitability. This warranty guarantees all tenants to a residence that is livable, safe and sanitary. This right applies to all rental leases, regardless of whether they are written or oral. In addition, if your landlord includes a stipulation in their lease that contradicts this policy, that condition is invalid under the law.
If you finally found an apartment you can afford in Manhattan, Brooklyn or Queens, you are probably excited to settle in and start establishing yourself in the neighborhood. You will want to see how long it takes you to get to work from your new home and learn about the best places to get your favorite coffee or pizza.