What are a tenant’s rights if they cannot move in to their rental because their is no Certificate of Occupancy?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

What are a tenant’s rights if they cannot move in to their rental because their is no Certificate of Occupancy?

I signed a leasing contract with my landlord of a brand new building to move in on 11/01. My landlord promised me she was able to pass the inspection and get the CO prior to that date. Then I paid her the security deposit (amount equal to 1.5 months rent). And I also moved some of the stuff in the apartment for storage purposes. But recently she informed me that it is unlikely that she would be able to obtain CO by 11/01. My old lease ends at the end of October. After that I will have no where to live. What should I do now? Can I sue for breach? What kind of remedy can I claim if I can sue?

Asked on October 13, 2010 under Real Estate Law, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

1) You can sue for breach of contract, since the landlord has in fact breached  it--the landlord has failed to provide you an apartment which you can legally occupy, which is what you contracted for. (Leases are contracts.)

2) You should be able to recover reasonoably foreseeable damages resulting from the breach. For example, things you could possible receive compensation for include:

a) storage charges, for continuing to store your goods

b) cost of short term rentals or hotel/motel while you find a new place to live

c) cost of additional moves you've had to make

d) *possibly* the difference in rent between the apartment you signed a lease for and a similarly situated other apartment that's at a higher rent (if you get a better/bigger apartment, you definitely could not recover; you'd be voluntarily upgrading)

It would be worth consulting with an attorney to see exactly what recourse you might have. Good luck.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption