Parking Provided by Landlord Was Required Service
LVT Number: #26033
Tenants complained of a reduction in services after landlord refused to reinstate parking privileges previously granted. Tenants claimed that landlord accepted payment for parking rent for April and May 2012 but rejected payment for June 2012. Landlord claimed that parking wasn't included or mentioned in tenant's apartment lease, so parking wasn't a service subject to rent stabilization. Tenants also had signed a "Monthly Commercial Parking Application Form" that landlord gave them in June 2010. And landlord had sued tenants for nonpayment of rent.
The DRA ruled for tenants and reduced their rent. The housing court proceeding for nonpayment of rent had involved both apartment and parking rent, and the judgment was vacated when tenants paid outstanding arrears. Since parking payments were treated as part of tenants' rental agreement in housing court, parking was a required service unilaterally removed on June 1, 2012.
Landlord appealed and lost. Landlord claimed that the nonpayment case was for apartment rent only. Landlord provided parking, cable TV, Internet, laundry, and telephone services to tenants under separate contracts. Landlord argued that tenants' parking was properly cancelled due to their noncompliance with parking lease requirements. The DHCR acknowledged that the housing court nonpayment case didn't cover parking rent. But landlord provided parking to tenants as an ancillary service by a direct written agreement. There was no third party or independent contractor that provided the parking. Landlord unilaterally revoked tenants' parking due to outstanding payments, and told tenants they could reapply for parking in six months.
Knox Place LLC: DHCR Adm. Rev. Docket No. CP210036RO (1/21/15) [4-pg. doc.]