Tenant's Washing Machine Caused Nuisance
LVT Number: 12583
Facts: Landlord sued to evict tenant for breaching her lease and for creating a nuisance, based on tenant's use of a washing machine in her apartment. Landlord claimed that tenant's washing machine had caused a flood and that soap suds had backed up through the plumbing to other apartments. Court: Landlord gave up its right to claim that tenant breached her lease because it knew about the washing machine for over six years and continued to accept rent. Landlord also couldn't claim that tenant breached her lease because she admittedly had the washing machine for over six years and a contract claim such as breach of lease must be made within six years. However, landlord didn't give up the right to claim that the washing machine was a nuisance. Testimony by other tenants and tenant's own family members proved that tenant operated the machine in a manner that caused a continual nuisance. Water from the washing machine was emptied through a hose flowing into the kitchen sink. There were periodic overflows of water, causing damage to the apartment below, due to tenant's inattention to the machine. Lint and soap suds weren't filtered properly and constantly plugged up the building's plumbing system. The court ruled for landlord, awarding a judgment of possession and giving tenant 10 days to correct the nuisance by permanently removing the washing machine.
RNR Realty Corp. v. Smith: NYLJ, p. 23, col. 2 (8/5/98) (Civ. Ct. Kings; Wendt, J)