Steven Warren Smollens’s Answers

Steven Warren Smollens

New York Landlord / Tenant Lawyer.

Contributor Level 20
  1. Locking out commercial tenant for non-payment of rent.

    Answered over 1 year ago.

    1. Steven Warren Smollens
    2. Olga Someras
    3. Jayson Lutzky
    3 lawyer answers

    Dear Hopewell Junction Landlord: Without a lease provision authorizing self-help in the event of nonpayment of rent, locking out your commercial tenant would be considered a breach of lease, void the obligation to pay rent, and subject the landlord to a lawsuit for damages by reason of the illegal eviction, breach of lease, loss of business opportunity and perhaps far more. No New York landlord is allowed to conduct an eviction without the use of the court where there is no lease based on...

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  2. Is it normal for a developer to not agree to a mortgage contingency clause in real estate contract?

    Answered about 1 month ago.

    1. Steven Warren Smollens
    2. Eric Edward Rothstein
    3. Lara Martina Harmel
    4. Bryan Lane Berson
    5. Stephen Richard Markman
    6. ···
    7 lawyer answers

    Dear New York Condo Purchaser: The Developer is looking for purchasers with available funds and ready to close without delay. So no mortgage. A contract with a mortgage contingency does not allow the developer to a quick sale. The message for you in relation to this new development is that you should look elsewhere. Make sure you have an attorney on board for any new purchase to deal with the contract and closing transaction.

    8 lawyers agreed with this answer

  3. My landlord put condo up for sale. But my lease expires 4/2015. I want to leave early if I find a home to purchase myself.

    Answered 11 months ago.

    1. Steven Warren Smollens
    2. Yan Margolin
    3. Robert Edward Sokolski
    3 lawyer answers

    Dear Brooklyn Tenant: I cannot see why you accepted the burden to show the apartment, unless this tenant obligation is specifically expressed in the lease. Otherwise, since you are not a real estate broker or an attorney, take a step back and stop accommodating your landlord's fantasy that a condominium may be sold in NYC without a broker and an attorney. In case of a sale, the usual head's up time is far more than the thirty days provided in the lease. And a notice of lease termination (...

    8 lawyers agreed with this answer

  4. How do I go after tenant in Nassau county in single family home for rent owed since 30 day notice was served?

    Answered about 1 year ago.

    1. Peter Christopher Lomtevas
    2. Steven Warren Smollens
    3. Eric Edward Rothstein
    3 lawyer answers

    Dear Hempstead Landlord: While it is prudent to forego accepting rent after serving a tenancy termination notice, the summary proceeding statute does not force the landlord to forever forebear from gaining a judgment for the unpaid rent. The statute allows a landlord to sue for "past" rent (unpaid), use and occupancy (that came due after termination of the tenancy [in this particular case, rent due through July 31 and U & O from July 31, 2013 to date of judgment]), as long as the landlord...

    8 lawyers agreed with this answer

  5. I served my tenant with a 30 day notice of termination but they still won't leave what do I do next?

    Answered over 1 year ago.

    1. Eric Edward Rothstein
    2. Steven Warren Smollens
    3. Michael C. Wild
    4. Jayson Lutzky
    5. Olga Someras
    6. ···
    6 lawyer answers

    Dear Cortland Owner Landlord: If you prepared the proper One Month (not thirty day) Notice, then the notice should clearly state that unless the tenant quits and surrenders possession of the premises to you on or before the date that is the "end of the term" that you as landlord will commence a summary proceeding (under the statute) to remove the tenant from possession. New York uses the form of special proceeding (not a regular form of action) known as a summary proceeding. The right to...

    8 lawyers agreed with this answer

  6. What happens when a property description is incorrect in a real estate contract of sale?

    Answered 12 days ago.

    1. Steven Warren Smollens
    2. Thomas Christian Egg
    3. Matthew Scott Kam Tannenbaum
    3 lawyer answers

    Dear Brooklyn Property Owner: If the contract described the property as including property the seller cannot convey, the buyer is entitled to cancel the contract and recover the down payment. The parties may also decide the a change in the contract price since the seller cannot sell the property as described in the contract. Since you have an attorney I find it hard to believe the attorneys and the broker on their own, came up with the wrong description of the property you intend to sell.

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  7. Is landlord allowed to collect rent?

    Answered 2 months ago.

    1. Steven Warren Smollens
    2. Emanuel Kataev
    3. Dana Whitney Atchley
    3 lawyer answers

    Dear New York Tenant: As long as you offer the rent the landlord is allowed to accept the rent. When you stop paying the landlord likely will terminate the month to month tenancy and if you do not move out before the thirty period ends, the landlord has the right to file a holdover summery proceeding. While the landlord may not have a right to sue for rent in case the rent is not paid, if a tenant is month to month, the landlord may also choose to end the tenancy. Consult an attorney...

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  8. I rent out an unregulated, free-market, condominium, can I charge late fees for late rent?

    Answered 7 months ago.

    1. Steven Warren Smollens
    2. Edwin Drantivy
    3. Richard J. Chertock
    3 lawyer answers

    Dear Brooklyn Landlord: A landlord in your situation may charge late fees. Many standard forms for leasing a condominium apartment contain all the terms and conditions expected by a landlord. What form of lease are you using? Usually, it is not a good idea for a lay person to tinker with pre-packaged leases, as an error in text may invalidate some significant right of the landlord to add unpaid late fees as an item of "additional rent." There is no "maximum" but courts will not enforce a...

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  9. How can I properly serve a 5 day notice on a commercial tenant in nyc if it is always closed?

    Answered 11 months ago.

    1. Steven Warren Smollens
    2. Peter Alden Axelrod
    3. Jason Todd Studinski
    3 lawyer answers

    Dear Brooklyn Landlord: As the "client" it should not fall on you to figure out how to prove to the court that you gained jurisdiction over the tenant. Your better course of action is to hire an attorney and together you will discover the proper notice to use as a predicate notice for a summary proceeding. Generally, it is a mistake to demand rent and also terminate the month to month tenancy. Usually, there is no reason to do so, as a straight forward termination notice will support a...

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  10. Can lawyer from another state say as Texas defend someone who lives in NY State and not licensed for NY only Texas?

    Answered 11 months ago.

    1. Steven Warren Smollens
    2. Christopher Daniel Leroi
    3. Eric Edward Rothstein
    3 lawyer answers

    Dear Huntington Friend: If your friend is sued he likely will require a legal defense. Consulting with an attorney now may head off a lawsuit. Practically, your friend's friend does not appear to have gained any legal rights by staying with your friend, but there must be more going on than stated here that will come out during an attorney consultation. An attorney from Texas may also practice law in New York State if also licenses in New York State. Your friend could check whether this...

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