New York: “What Landlords, Tenants Must Do During Bedbug Infestations,” by Jill Urban, NY1, September 16, 2010
The city’s bedbug epidemic is a hot topic, especially on the tenant’s rights hotline at the Metropolitan Council on Housing in NoHo. The volunteers at this non-profit say they are yielding more calls than ever from desperate New Yorkers battling bedbugs and landlords who do not want to properly exterminate.
“Unfortunately, a lot of New York City landlords are used to doing the cheapest fix or repair possible and when it comes to exterminating bed bugs, that’s just not going to work,” says Mario Mazzoni of the Metropolitan Council on Housing. “The bedbugs are going to stay if you don’t do the right kind of extermination.”
NY1 asked the council a few of the most common questions about tenants’ rights regarding bedbugs. First, what if your landlord claims you brought them in and cleaning them is your responsibility?
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California: “Legislature Passes Bill to Protect Innocent Tenants From Having their Credit Ruined by Banks,” by Dean Preston, BeyondChron, September 15, 2010
Tenants evicted through no fault of their own frequently have their credit history damaged for years. In California, where hundreds of thousands of tenants are being evicted by banks because their landlords went into foreclosure, these credit impacts are particularly harsh. Fortunately, a bill by state senator Ellen Corbett (D – San Leandro) would limit this collateral damage to innocent renters. Readers can weigh in by signing the online petition urging the Governor to approve Senator Corbett’s bill.
Years ago, California’s legislature tried to stop credit reporting companies from reporting evictions unless tenants were proven to have done something wrong by entry of judgment against them. The law, which is still on the books, provides that these companies can only report evictions where landlords obtain judgments against the tenants. Unfortunately, the courts severely restricted the law, ruling that reporting companies have a first amendment right to report eviction records that are public.
New York: “Stuyvesant Town Tenants Are Offered Co-op Plan,” New York Times Blog, September 13, 2010
Two investors who are vying for control of the financially troubled Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village complexes in Manhattan have proposed a partnership with the 25,000 tenants there that would create an affordable housing co-op and allow the investors to reap a profit.
A raft of issues would have to be decided before the partnership is finalized, including who controls the fate of the buildings, The New York Times’s Charles V. Bagli reports.
But if successful, the investors hope to outmaneuver a rival lending group and conduct the largest co-op conversion in the country’s history at what is still considered to be a real estate gem: an 80-acre complex in the heart of Manhattan that has historically served as an affordable enclave for the middle class.