Is a Reduction Rider that forces me to show my apartment 4 times a week for 1 hour each, legal and enforceable?

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Is a Reduction Rider that forces me to show my apartment 4 times a week for 1 hour each, legal and enforceable?

The rider to my lease says that I must show my apartment 3 days during the week and 1 day during the weekend for the final 45 days of my lease. Each of those times must be for a 1 hour slot. The 3 times in the week must be between 5-7, the 1 weekend slot must be between 11-5. Is this really legal? It would make me basically the employee of my landlord. The clause says if I do not perform this duty, I must lose my rent reduction, increasing what I pay to 150% of the normal. For 2 months that means basically the landlord keeps security. This is not a walk-through with the landlord.

Asked on July 1, 2012 under Real Estate Law, New York

Answers:

Mark Siegel / Law Office of Mark A. Siegel

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

NY Real Property Law §235-c gives the court  the power to decide if a lease clause is unconscionable. The statute provides that "If the court as a matter of law finds a lease  or  any  clause  of  the  lease  to  have  been unconscionable  at  the time it was made the court may refuse to enforce  the lease, or it may enforce the remainder  of  the  lease  without  the unconscionable  clause,  or  it  may  so  limit  the  application of any unconscionable clause as to avoid any unconscionable result."
    The law further provides that if you file a claim in court asking the court to rescind the lease clause as unconscionable, you & the landlord, as parties, will "be afforded a reasonable opportunity to present evidence as to its setting,  purpose and effect to aid the court in making the determination."

After all admissible evidence has been submitted to the court, the court will determine if the provision in your rider is "unconscionably" unfair and unreasonable under the circumstances. You should also be aware that in NY there is a 6 year statute of limitations within which to bring an action to rescind a lease, after the execution of the lease.


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