NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) – 165 West 91st Street Holdings LLC will pay $540,000 in penalties after allegations the company converted two rent-controlled apartments in Manhattan into a condominium complex, New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman said.
“With many struggling to find affordable housing, my office will not tolerate real estate developers who circumvent laws designed to protect rent-stabilized units,” Schneiderman said. “I am pleased that this agreement will directly benefit hardworking New Yorkers by allowing for the creation of additional affordable housing units, which will boost our communities.”
Due to the Martin Act, apartment purchasers and tenants have an exclusive right to purchase units in the new condo if their building is being converted. They cannot, in most cases, be evicted solely because of the building conversion.
Of the monetary settlement, $490,000 will go toward the New York City Affordable Housing Fund, a fund developed to help compensate for lost affordable housing.
“I commend Attorney General Schneiderman’s settlement on behalf of two formerly rent controlled tenants,” Assembly Member Daniel O'Donnell said. “The loss of rent regulated housing in my district is striking – any and all attempts to bring units back into regulation are appreciated. Barring that, settlements like these are important to at least assist the tenants who have lost these units. The incentive to break the law for huge profits must be eliminated."