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I am renting an apartment in a luxury complex. At the time…

Customer Question
I am renting an apartment...
I am renting an apartment in a luxury complex. At the time of move in, they mentioned there was construction going on. They also mentioned that my unit did not have the washer and dryer that was part of construction. I asked if we would be able to remain in our unit during construction, and they answered that it was likely I would get the washer and dryer during my lease duration and there was no need to worry.
Now, myself, as well as many other tenants are having their leases up for non-renewal so they can do this instruction. They are not offering anyone to leave for a duration, or move there stuff temporarily or any moving costs. They are simply not renewing leases and making us leave to other units if available. The construction is less than 2 weeks, and it is simply more efficient for them to have us gone b/c of thier insurance.
Part 2- We have all been paying equal water bill, divided throughout the complex. This includes units with washer and dryer, and units without (such as mine). The units without must use credit card operated machines, so we are paying for our wash and higher water bills. This doesn't seem right, is it?
Submitted: 3 years ago.Category: Landlord-Tenant
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Answered in 16 minutes by:
6/7/2015
Lawyer: Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney replied 3 years ago
Dimitry K., Esq.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 41,221
Experience: Licensed in multiple jurisdictions. Experienced Landlord-Tenant attorney.
Verified
Thank you for your question. Please permit me to assist you with your concerns.
I have reviewed the facts but I am somewhat unclear as to your questions. Can you please elaborate further so that I can best help?
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago

Yes,

Part 1: Do we have any legal grounding to fight back to be allowed to stay in my apartment during construction given this was promised at time of lease signing? If not, could I command moving costs? I would never have signed the lease had I known, nor moved my things in.

Part 2: Is it legal to divide water evenly for tenants with and without washer and dryer? Specifically if the ones without are paying additional fees to use the community ones?

Lawyer: Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney replied 3 years ago
Jaqi,
To answer both:
1. Are you month to month, annual contract? What specifically is your contractual term here? I am assuming this isn't rent-controlled, correct?
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Customer reply replied 3 years ago

My contract is 15 months, and unfortunately not rent controlled. They are also wildly raising the rent, but there is nothing that I can do about that.

Lawyer: Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney replied 3 years ago
Jaqi,
Thank you for your patience. Now, to answer directly, you asked:
Part 1: Do we have any legal grounding to fight back to be allowed to stay in my apartment during construction given this was promised at time of lease signing? If not, could I command moving costs? I would never have signed the lease had I known, nor moved my things in.
This is tough but likely the answer is 'no'. What governs is not what was promised but what was in writing. And if your lease naturally expires, the landlord has no duty to extend the lease unless and only unless the lease states that you as a tenant have the unilateral right to an extension. Since the lease is ending naturally, you are not entitled to moving costs or relocation fees. I realize this is not welcome news, but provided they gave you adequate notice of non-renewal, they are within their rights to terminate.
Part 2: Is it legal to divide water evenly for tenants with and without washer and dryer? Specifically if the ones without are paying additional fees to use the community ones?
This is a good question and the answer is a bit complicated (not intentionally, just the issue is a bit muddled). What governs is the rental of the machine, not the water use. If the landlord argues that the cost is for renting the use of the machine, then he is free to do so because he is then arguably not charging for water but just the use of the item (think of renting a car, but the gas costs are still on the party who rented, as the cost of the rental only includes the rental and not the gas). This appears shady and somewhat unethical, but it is likely permissible.
Sincerely,
Dimitry, Esq.
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