You can be entitled to a rent abatement, which is a reduction in rent to compensate for bad conditions or lack of services, even if your landlord is not directly at fault. For example, if a utility company is doing work in your neighborhood, and causes the water, electrical or gas service in your building to be disrupted, that represents a breach of habitability. Even though the landlord didn’t cause it, he or she is still responsible for making sure that the situation is corrected, and the remedy isn’t delayed. In an instance like this or a similar circumstance, the remedy could be reduced rent. As a practical matter, a judge is not likely to impose an abatement if the landlord has no power to correct the problem, and didn’t cause the defective condition or interruption in services. However, if you can prove that the landlord could have solved it but chose not to, you may be entitled to a rent reduction commensurate with your loss.
Please Note: Every McAdams Law Tenant Protection Tip and article is for informational purposes only and cannot substitute for legal advice. Before taking action, consult an experienced New York Landlord Tenant attorney about your situation. Beware that being a party in a lawsuit in New York City’s Housing Court can subject you to blacklisting. Please see more details here.
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