Loft Law Community / Deadline Survey

Every day since the March 11 application deadline NYCLT has been receiving emails from loft tenants asking about their rights. Can they apply for coverage? What happens if they missed the deadline? Some tenants only heard about the Loft Law after the deadline or just missed joining their neighbor’s application – what happens to these units now? 

The one thing non-applicant AND applicant (or IMD) loft tenants can do right now is support NYCLT’s efforts to fix the Loft Law. 

1. Take two minutes to answer this brief survey. If the survey below does not work please try this link http://bit.ly/1e30hXG 

2. Then ask everyone you know (who lives in a loft) to also answer our survey.

We know tenants want to hear what they can do for their lofts. This is real, this will help. We need more information about you and the community.

The NYC Loft Board is still trying to figure out what legal options are available. At this time they do not believe they can accept tenant or landlord-initiated coverage applications, even for units in buildings which may already have an application on file for some units.

3. Share your story

NYCLT has joined forced with LMLT to lobby the NY State Assembly and Senate to fix the Loft Law. We hope to announce a bill soon to remove the deadline. Then we will work to remove other exclusionary provisions (like windows, basements and IU) to make the Loft Law more inclusive. We need stories from the community to show politicians why these changes need to be made. If you live in a loft but did not apply OR are worried about your coverage application please contact us at info@nycloftenants.org

We will protect the privacy and identity of anyone who writes to us. These case studies will be used anonymously in private conversations with politicians (we will not post them online). Please contact us if you have questions.

As a tenant – the Loft Law is your only avenue for protecting your live/work loft. It grants you amazing residential rights and rent stabilization. Thousands of units throughout the city have already registered, we think you should be protected too.

Bringing more lofts into the Loft Board’s jurisdiction not only helps tenants and landlords but benefits the neighborhoods and city. The Loft Law is a remedial law – designed to bring illegally converted residential buildings into compliance with Fire and Safety codes. The more buildings brought into compliance and the more affordable live/work housing we create through the Loft Law, the better for everyone.

If you work for or are a local representative contact us at action@nyclofttenants.org for more information.

1-16-2014 Loft Board Meeting Highlights

Fellow Loft Tenants,

The recent Loft Board meeting was a little under 2 hours and featured, among other highlights, an ‘executive session’! The executive session was on matters concerning 13 and 15 Thames St and we members of the public were asked to take leave and wait outside the board room.

The meeting started with an amendment request (Daniel Schachter) of the previous mtg minutes to include a conversation on possible outreach efforts to tenants.

Early on in this meeting, Chuck Delaney asked that the Board formally add to it’s policy issues for the future Chairperson the concern of a application deadline rush and outreach. He asked the Board to officially weigh in on and comment on the good of extending the deadline for new applications, and executive director Lanny Alexander seemed interested and well disposed to the idea. (They spoke to each other about it more after the meeting.)

Continue reading

Final Rules published and the countdown begins!

On Sept 11th 2013 the NYC Loft Board published the final rules governing buildings covered by the Loft Law. These rules affect tenants covered under the 2010 expansion and 2013 amendment, as well as those covered under the original law. (Changes are minimal for “old Loft Law” buildings, except for the reduction in the milestone increases.)

With the rules published, the six-month clock has started ticking for tenants and landlords to apply for Loft Law coverage. The final deadline is March 11, 2014! If a unit is not registered by that time it may not be eligible for coverage. However, since coverage goes with the unit, it will still be possible for landlords to amend their registrations to reflect new tenants, or for tenants to apply to become the protected occupants of covered units, after that date. Continue reading

Rule 2-08 Testimony: Incompatible Use

It’s no secret that the Incompatible Use provisions of the 2010 Loft Law, originally intended to protect manufacturing, are sometimes used by building owners who want to keep their buildings residential but don’t want to grant their tenants Loft Law protections. Just contesting an application on the basis of Incompatible Use puts up a huge roadblock, and sometimes drives tenants out even though there is no actual danger.

One unfair and strange consequence of the way the rule was implemented in 2011 is that the burden of proof is put on tenants to prove that there is not a dangerous condition. Aside from the difficulty of proving a negative, this also puts a tremendous expense on the tenant – often reaching into tens of thousands of dollars in legal and engineering costs – just to counter a problem the owner claims but hasn’t proved.  Continue reading

Rule 2-01 Testimony: Narrative Statement Pitfalls

No one knows loft buildings better than the tenants who live there. Often tenants did most of the work to convert an empty warehouse or factory into living rooms, bedrooms, and kitchens. So when it comes time to make the building safe, it’s essential to have the tenants’ input. 

That’s a large part of why the Narrative Statement Process was created. Rule 2-01 is very well thought out and fair. However, many loft landlords are flouting the process and trying to escape the tenant oversight that is at the heart of the rule. Don’t let them! Continue reading