Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Apartment rant #476

Remember that great apartment I introduced you to last June? Well, it's been the bane of my existence pretty much since then (remember the ConEd incident?). We had the wall issue. Then came the hot water issue. And the, "oh, you see that thing that looks like a flaccid penis on my roommate's wall? Yeah, that's water damage that came from the balcony of the apartment upstairs (seriously?) after three plus days of rain" issue. Oh, and our intercom hasn't worked in nine months. How long have we been living there? That's right, NINE MONTHS.

The latest development, a little more than a week ago, was that the building made the decision to cut our 24-hour doorman service effective March 1 (we got the letter on the Friday previous). About 25-30 or so of us tenants met that Sunday morning to discuss what we could do about it. Negotiate an evening-only doorman deal? Slash our rent to compensate for a lost service? All die a bullet-riddled death in our neighborhood and hope our remaining loved ones sue later? Two lawyers in the building spearheaded the efforts and did all of the attorney stuff like look up precedent and other things I completely don't understand. At the end of the meeting (where I talked more than was reasonable considering my complete lack of knowledge on the law), we all signed a letter stating that we feel this is an important safety issue (since we live on the cusp of a less desirable neighborhood where there often police cars and other indications of illegal activity), and part of our rent goes to such amenities as these. Additionally, we all decided to hold off on paying our rent until Friday the 5th to see if our letter held any weight with them.

It did. Sort of. The two attorneys then met with the head of the management company for our building (a man who, despite my many efforts to speak to him on a variety of issues regarding the hell suck that we live in, has never once been "available" to take my calls) who said, essentially, that the recession has really hit them hard. No kidding? That's strange, because we pay more than THREE THOUSAND DOLLARS in rent to you every month, and there are more than 50 units in our building. Eff you. Rae's dad suggested that we write a letter saying that we've also been affected by the recession and are no longer able to pay our rent, and we hope this isn't an inconvenience. I liked that.

However, due to their economic issues aplenty, the manager suggested to lawyer dude that he could offer an early-out option on our leases, should we want to leave. I read this in an email while in a cab and I nearly jumped out of my seat. IT'S A DREAM COME TRUE! The management company believes that all of the tenants received STEEP discounts on our rentals (um, no) and could easily fill the apartments for more than we all pay. So, please, leave. Gladly. And, I might add, you're seriously delusional.

Now, the fam and I discussed this and decided to pursue this option with near-glee. Yesterday I spoke to not-the-manager of the building to ask for this early-out option in writing, as my roommates and I would like to get the eff out of that building. Relatively pleasant, she said that she actually had our lease renewal option in a stack of papers and would remove ours so that she could sign a letter for us stating that we could leave without penalty. Then I skipped away.

This morning, however, we DID receive our lease renewal option paperwork. And they're raising the rent by more than $250, and requesting additional security. Which is HYSTERICAL.

So, to them, I say peace out and I hope you will enjoy my scathing review of your management company and your building when I move out and post it on yelp.com.


Nancy said...

I think you have the same management company I did when I was living in Bklyn! Congrats on being able to get out and good luck finding a place. Love your blog!

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