Zona Properties, Inc. | P.O. Box 17937, Rochester, NY, 14617
Email: dick.zona@zonaproperties.com | Phone: (585) 506-9430

Can a Tenant Sue the City (government) for being evicted???

Posted on: March 23rd, 2015 by zonaprop

There was an interesting case in the city of Rochester. A tenant was recently evicted from her apartment because the police were called to the building for domestic disturbance too many times. The crux of the matter is that the City of Rochester has a law on the books (that may be also on other municipalities records) that states that if the a property owner has a building that is deemed a public nuisance the city can place ‘points’ on the property. If a property is assessed too many points in a short period of time the property can be confiscated by the city (in the extreme) or possibly shut down from doing business. The original purpose of the law was so places that harbor drug houses, prostitution and other crimes could be shut down. The most common measure the city uses to establish placing points on a property is by the number of times the police are involved in the property and the seriousness of the calls.
In this case we are led to believe (by newspaper accounts) that the tenant was a long term tenant, a good tenant that always paid her rent on time. She had a boyfriend that abused her. The police were called numerous times and finally informed the landlord that the issue had become a nuisance and they were placing points on the building. The landlord cancelled her lease with a 30 day notice. She moved from the property and subsequently began a lawsuit against the city because (I believe) she was evicted for no reason other than she was a battered woman. Is this fair? Is this legal? Is this the right thing to do morally?

Working Out Payment Plans with tenants

Posted on: March 23rd, 2015 by zonaprop

Different landlords have different views on this subject. Some feel that if a tenant doesn’t pay the rent in full on the first of the month he/she should be evicted by the 2nd. This is a good concept but doesn’t always find itself in reality. First, in most states it is required that a landlord goes through a full court procedure before a tenant can be put out (a 3 day written notice does not suffice by itself). Also if you are dealing with middle-low income tenants (or any tenants) sometimes financial problems arise that make it not possible to have the rent right on the first. It might be wise to take into consideration several factors when making your decision/policy on late payments. First, is this a good tenant that has just had a one-time problem or is this a tenant that has caused problems repeatedly and is likely taking advantage (again)? Is it worth working out these problems with a payment plan or financially would it be better to get the tenant out and start over?

Take into consideration these factors:
Evcition costs: (in my part of the country)
– Eviction filing fee: $45.00
– Service of papers: $30.00 – $60.00
– Attorneys fee: $225 – $350
– Marshal to serve warrant: $50.00 – $100.00

Make-ready costs:
– Clean & paint & repair apartment: $200.00 – $800.00

Loss of original rent: $???????

Advertising for new tenant: $00.00 – $200.00

Loss of rent while apartment is vacant: $???????

If the tenant is generally a good tenant and agrees to a reasonable (in your eyes) payment plan beginning within a week it might be better to work this out as long as the payment plan is kept.