Nadel & Ciarlo, P.C.

New York City Real Estate Law Blog

Are you familiar with these common lease violations?

As a landlord, you create a lease with the idea that your tenant will follow the rules at all times. Unfortunately, it can be a challenge to enforce these rules on a day-to-day basis.

There is no way of knowing if a tenant will commit a lease violation, so you should expect this to happen every now and again. Here are some of the most common violations:

  • Unauthorized pets. Like many landlords, you may not be thrilled with the idea of a tenant keeping pets on the property. Not only can they cause damage, but a pet could injure someone as well.
  • Long-term guests. This isn't something that is in every lease agreement, but it may be in yours. A long-term guest is anyone who lives at the property for an extended period of time, thus becoming a liability.
  • Decorating the property in a manner that causes damage. There are many examples of this, such as hanging items on the wall. It's okay that a person wants to make the property feel like home, but he or she can't damage it while doing so.

What problems do home sellers try to hide?

When a person is selling his or her home, he or she may do whatever it takes to make a deal. Unfortunately, this could mean hiding certain problems in an attempt to keep the buyer in the dark.

As a buyer, you need to do whatever it takes to uncover any issues that could cost you time or money in the future. Some of the many things that sellers attempt to hide include:

What procedure will you follow after a late rent payment?

As a landlord, you never want to find that your tenant is not paying on time. This can be frustrating on many levels.

However, there's a good chance you'll find yourself in this situation at some point in time. If this happens, you must know what procedure to follow. Here are the things you need to do:

  • Consult the lease. Above all else, you need to read through the lease to better understand how to deal with a late payment. Both parties signed the lease, so this legal document will tell you what to do next.
  • Make sure you have your facts straights. For instance, you don't want to assume you know the due date, just to find later on that you were wrong.
  • Double check late payment fees. This will give you a clear idea of the fees you can access if a payment is not remitted on time.

Why house sales sometimes fall through

Everybody's seen it before: a house on the block up for sale, a "Pending" sign appears after awhile -- then, suddenly, instead of a "Sold" sign going up, the house is simply back on the market again with no explanation.

Why? What could possibly happen? Is it something wrong with the house? Maybe, but the odds are against it. Here are the usual reasons:

What is a holdover eviction?

There is more to a holdover eviction than meets the eye. In short, this is a court case in which a landlord sues the tenant for the right to evict the person regardless of if the person is paying his or her rent.

While a landlord may be seeking rent as part of the court case, the primary goal of this person is to take over possession of the property.

Real estate disputes: Negotiation or litigation may be necessary

Any type of real estate dispute is one that can quickly escalate. If this happens, it goes without saying that you'll want to learn more about your legal rights.

It may be your hope that you can work things out with the other party, but you know that this is easier said than done. This is why negotiation or litigation often comes into play.

There is more than 1 type of commercial real estate lease

If you are in the process of searching for commercial real estate to lease, it's important that you remember one thing: There is more than one type of lease. By keeping this in mind, you'll know exactly what you are negotiating when it comes time to do so.

Here are some of the most common forms of commercial real estate lease:

  • Fixed lease: A set rent amount is predetermined for a specific period of time (such as five years)
  • Gross lease: The tenant pays a flat amount, with the landlord paying for operating costs associated with the building
  • Step lease: The rent increases over the life of the lease, such as every year
  • Cost of living lease: The amount of rent is directly tied to the cost of living
  • Percentage lease: The tenant pays a set amount plus a percentage of gross income

Rent stabilization and rent control in New York

It's no secret that renting an apartment or a room in New York City is not cheap. It can be a nightmare to find something that is both affordable in the moment and that is not in danger of accelerating in price in the near future. The market is an extremely competitive one, and that is why there are many laws in place to offer protections for renters.

What are rent-controlled apartments?

These things could complicate your mortgage when buying a home

Unless you have enough cash on hand, most people opt for a mortgage to purchase a home. While there is nothing wrong with this, you must make sure all your ducks are in a row before your closing rolls around.

By staying in close contact with your lender, you should be able to avoid trouble at the closing table. However, there are some things you can do that could complicate the process:

  • Obtaining an auto loan or new credit card. If you want to throw a wrench into your plan, doing one of these two things will do just that. You don't want to add any more debt to your current load until your mortgage is securely in place.
  • Run up debt on a credit card. For example, you may be tempted to buy new items for your home, such as appliances or furniture. This sounds harmless enough, but your mortgage approval is based largely on debt to income ratio. Running up credit card debt will change this.
  • Switching jobs. Unless you absolutely need to do this, it's best to wait until you secure your mortgage to consider this. If you lose your job or have to make a change, talk this over with your mortgage lender as far in advance as possible.

Landlord sentenced to jail for mortgage fraud

It sounds like a story straight out of the 80s: A New York City landlord does everything he can to strong-arm tenants in rent-controlled apartments out of his buildings so that he can void their leases and collect the much bigger income when he charges the new tenants the current market rate. Meanwhile, he defrauds the banks by lying and claiming that he's already receiving those sweet market-rate rental fees -- which convinces them to lend him millions.

Like a lot of the movies in the 80s that featured those kinds of stories, the landlord finally got his comeuppance: A year in jail at the notorious Riker's Island for the bank fraud alone. Meanwhile, he's still got to face the accusations and lawsuits that are mounting from his victimized tenants.

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