Tenant Overcharged Roommate
LVT Number: 19308
Roommate complained of an overcharge by rent-stabilized tenant. The DRA ruled for roommate, finding that tenant had charged roommate more than her proportionate share of rent. Tenant appealed and lost. Tenant claimed that she had charged roommate for cable service, the use of a larger bedroom, and a 10 percent surcharge for the furnishings. The DHCR said tenant's written agreement with roommate stated that tenant didn't provide cable television service. Roommate paid separately for cable Internet service. It didn't matter what size roommate's bedroom was. The Rent Stabilization Code provides that tenants can charge roommates a proportional share of the rent based on the number of occupants, not the amount of space each occupies. And a 10 percent surcharge for furnishings applies only to sublets. Since tenant didn't move out, there was no sublease agreement and tenant couldn't collect a furniture surcharge.
Smolik: DHCR Adm. Rev. Docket No. UF410013RO (9/12/06) [3-pg. doc.]