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(Discussing River Rose) Beware of renting in this building. This building is being sold as of year end and will be converted into condominiums. Each new lease contains an Owner's Cancellation Rider which allows the Owner to cancel the lease for any reason or for no reason on 60 days notice. Rumor has it that YL Realty is the buyer of the building. YL Realty bought 225 Rector Place recently and threw al of the tenants in that building out on 60 days notice this past September.
YL Eealty was not the buyer
I have a number of friends who live in that building. People are either in the procees of getting out or are preparing to do so once they get their "lease renewals". The owner is definitely trying to empty that building as soon as possible. Requested rent increases are in the 35-40% range. If that doesn't do it then there is the 60 day cancellation clause. Does anyone know who is buying that building?
I am a tenant in this building and my lease is coming up soon. I have also heard my neighbors (now moved out) talking about 35%+ rent increases. Does anyone know if they must give me 60 days notice of the rent increase before my lease is up? Does the renewal lease as offered give the tenant an equal right to terminate the lease on 60 days notice? Any more intel on the situation would be much appreciated.
normally it's 30 days both ends.
but if the building is looking to empty, you're better off looking for a new place rather than deal with 35% rent increase and a 60 day notice of eviction at any time.
you'll also find better rentals deals during the dec - feb period as the market's quite during this time.
I heard that the sale is supposed to be finalized in March or thereabouts but have not found out to whom.
For tenants who might be interested in buying is there truth to the talk that tenants at conversions get good "insider discounts"?
We are moving out of that building this month. The deal with which we were presented in our renewal package was a 36% rent increase and a one year lease. (They did give us the renewal package 60 days before our current lease was set to expire.) However, we told that as a condition to the owner agreeing to sign the lease we had to agree to sign something that would allow the owner to cancel our lease on 60 days notice. We had no similar right. I don't think that anyone is going to get any "insider discount" to buy in that building. I think that the reason for the 60 day cancellation policy is so that they can get everyone out before they actually convert so that they won't have to give anyone the chance to buy at an insider price.
We are moving out. We have to. 40% rent increase! We want to look into Gateway. Does anyone have info on that building? Other Rockrose buildings are too expensive.
News officially out about this one in the current BPC Broadsheet. Being bought by Buttonwood Real Estate who is planning to renovate under a "non-eviction" plan. Supposed to close in March.
What does "non-eviction plan" mean? Of course, if they can get everyone out in 60 days, THAT is their non-eviction plan.
according to http://www.consumer.state.ny.us/clahm/clahm-landlords.htm
Under a non-eviction plan, non-purchasing tenants may not be evicted for failure to buy their apartments. They continue to be rental tenants, but their apartments may be sold, at which time the tenant must pay rent to the purchaser.
To say that these people have been operating under a non-eviction plan is a joke. It is obvious that part of their deal with Rockrose was that Rockrose deliver as empty a building as possible, which they have been accomplishing through their outrageous rent increases (one family saw their rent on a three bedroom increase from $4800 to $8600 per month in one shot) and their ability to evict everyone in 60 days. By the time they get the conversion approved they won't have any remaining tenants in the building.
The "non-eviction plan" concept was created for buildings with majority rent-regulated tenants. For market-rate buildings, they just need to do exactly what they're doing -- let leases expire, or invoke cancellation clauses.
Is River Rose an 80/20 building? If so, does anyone here know how the low- or moderate-income apartments are being handled?
333 Rector Place (River Rose) is not an 80/20 building. By the way, it is interesting that the building continues to advertise apartments for rent (for show only, I suppose) at the same time that tenants are being forced out. Who do they think is going to rent in that building under current conditions? Word is definitely out in Battery Park City as to how poorly the tenants in that building are being treated so they won't be getting any new tenants from that base. Maybe they are looking to attract transients-- with very deep pockets and no children in school-- who are willing to put up with living under the threat of eviction at any time.
If they wanted to keep people in the building while undergoing renovations, they would be offering a discount. Since the lease renewals include premiums -- to put it mildly -- they either (1) want to upgrade (financially) their rental clientele (ha ha ha), or (2) influence people out of the building. The point is, unless in dire need of housing in BPC there is no reason whatsoever to rent at the RiverRose. (and that's how Buttonwood wants it) Cheers!
what's even crazier is that people continue to rent in the building--according to this site, someone signed a lease on 3/9. wonder if they are telling these people about the sale...never bothered to let the people actually living there know.
It seems they are NOT telling prospective renters about the sale -- ran into a prospective renter in the building recently viewing an apartment who had no idea. Of course, I guess anybody who would agree to the 60 day kick-out clause (assuming they read the lease before signing) knows what they are getting, but why waste everyone's time by not telling them up front?
Does anyone know if Rockrose is planning on doing the same with other of its buildings in BPC- we live in 41 River Terr and I'd like to know if it is a real possibility that something like this could happen here too. We love our apt and the rent is decent for what we get but if something like this is bound to happen I think we might look into buying something... anyone know?
41 river terrace is 80/20 and also rent stabilized, so that may not be as feasible.
Converters are not allowed to "warehouse" units. How many empty units are there?
There are many many empty units and the number continues to grow as the months pass and people receive their "renewal" packets. Rockrose has been denying to tenants who call that they have been trying to get rid of all of the tenants in this building. Rockrose has been telling people who call after receiving their "renewal" packets and try to negotiate the rent down and/or get rid of the 60 day kick out clause that "many tenants have been accepting the renewal terms to buy themselves the opportunity to purchase in the building once it converts." Of course if this were the case, they wouldn't need to have the 60 day kick out clause!
Tenants in this building, including me, just got Early Termination notices telling us to vacate by June 30, 2007. Now I actually do have a new place lined up but I will not be able to move in until September or October.
* I have heard that some tenants in the building have leases that are not subject to early termination which run through September 2007. Can anyone confirm?
* Does anyone have knowledge of the new landlord, Cooper Square, being willing to be flexible? I *will* move out and I *will* pay my rent, I just need a little more time.
* Worst comes to worst, what are the prospects for fighting and being able to hold out for an extra 5 to 6 months?
Wait--I live in this building. When does your lease expire? I thought they weren't going to evict anyone early? My lease is set to expire in September, and I don't have the 60 day cancellation clause. This is unbelievable. Did the letter come from Rockrose?
If you do NOT have the 60 day kick out clause (Early Termination Rider) in your lease, the landlord should not be able to do anything to you. And I am very glad to hear you have a REAL lease running through September! Raises my hopes that I may be able to stay here that long too.
Today I got a certified letter from Rockrose saying that they had assigned their interest in the lease to Cooper Square. Yesterday I got the letter from Cooper Square telling me they wanted me out by the end of June.
Even worse -- there were new tenants who started their "fake" leases just a month or two ago. Goes to show you gotta read the fine print.
But it does get better. Apparently Cooper Square is soliciting "short-term summer rentals." I now feel much more optimistic about my chances of sticking it out till fall.
On the other hand I have gotten exactly zero information about opportunities to buy in the building, which is sort of sad, because I would have very seriously considered it.
Please spread word of anything you learn among the neighbors -- I will too!
PS: My lease in principle should have expired in March 2008, but for the grace of the Early Termination Rider (which I knew was likely to get exercised, just didn't expect it so soon).
Spoke with the Cooper Square people today - after leaving numerous messages - as today is the last day of our current lease and we have no new one. Apparently everyone who signed a new lease anytime after Jan gets the 60 day out notice. Everyone renewing from May 1 - Sept 1 will get a 5 month lease extenstion only. So bascically looks like they want everyone out by the end of December.
Don't you love these guys!
To #30 -- just want to be sure I understand, i.e. did Cooper Square tell you that folks who renewed their leases (with the 60 day boot clause) from May through December 2006 are able to get 5 months extension to the end of December? Do you know if that has to be 5 solid months or if it can be month-to-month? Thanks!!
#30, since today was the last day of your current lease are they giving you the 5 month option as well?
To # 31: I specifically asked about the month-to-month. Laura didn't know. I think she's not taking calls because its really not in her hand. Apparently we should be getting the package any day now and it will be more clear then.
She didn't say anything about the people who renewed their lease - I assume the 60 day eviction still applies in that case. Sorry.
# 32 - yes I have the 5 month option. Supposedly. But haven't actually seen any paperwork yet.
I just don't get it - why would they want everyone out:
1. At least 40-50% of the tenants may want to buy into the building - why increase your cost of sales by kicking everyone out
2. NY law states that if you warehouse more than 10-20% of the units, you dont get approval for Condo conversion.
Received my renewal package in the mail today - rent going up from $4200 to $5400 and only 4 month lease option being offered - maybe we should convene a meeting of all residents to discuss our options. any takers?
I would attend and I bet lots of others would too. We might want to put a sign in the laundry or by the elevators. By the way has anyone been following the situation with the Sheffield conversion?
This could provide negotiating leverage.
We just renewed our lease effective 4/1 and on Thursday we got our letter saying we have to be out by 6/30. Angry doesn't even begin to describe it...
Can someone please explain the "warehouse" issue mentioned twice above? Is there a site that explains the legalities of it?
We would love to participate in a tenants meeting - just let us know where and when.
My lease is up June 30th. I called Cooper Square and they told me that I could get an extension to August 30th, but with the new rent increase. It went up $800. She said all apts will be vacant by September 30th so they can start construction.Ridiculous. I mean to raise rent for 2 MONTHS and you are kicking me out. Nice!
When do people think would be the best time to organize a tenants' meeting? On the weekend or on a weekday evening? I am out of town Monday/Tuesday next week but could make Wed / Thurs may 9 / 10, over the weekend, or evenings of Mon/Tues May 14/15.
Is someone prepared to organize a meeting? We could try sending out a blast e-mail through BuildingLink but they might block it. Flyers (laundry room, mail room, by the elevators)might be better. Or both.
The link to the warehouse issue and other tenant protection is
What they're doing is totally illegal - I think we should call them on it. Class Action suit, anyone
I dont live in the building but suspect they may block a blast.One of you guys should set up an email account for this purpose and then just distribute flyers under everyones doors. Also all the people from streeteasy can then email that person so you can keep track. Good luck to you guys!
How about trying to organize a meeting in the Rector Place park, opposite the building:
11 AM Sat May 05 2007, or if we want to give people more time, how about Sat May 12 same time, same place?
We could even call in an attorney wo can explain our options to us - the Park Place residents were able to get a reprieve from the attorney general's office.....
I vote for the 12th -- I can't come this Saturday morning and that might be to soon to get our best crowd (and/or a lawyer)... on the other hand we might want to plan the "main" meeting for the 12th and a "pre meeting" for any who can come on the 5th. The weather forecast for the 12th is so-so but we could always meet in the gym (or one of the many empty apartments, ha ha) as a rain location.
Meanwhile I will read the NY state site. I also definitely recommend checking out the Sheffield information if you have not yet.
We should also send a "tip" to curbed.com - that is usually a good forum to get advice; maybe, our situation has some parallels to the Sheffield conversion situation described in comment #40 above
Class action sounds like a doable option - we should be able to find a law firm that is willing to do something like this on a contingency basis, with minimal upfront costs, since what they are doing appears to be blatantly illegal. We could try and find out who the attorneys representing the Park Place tenants were. any idea?
Samuel J. Himmelstein and Kevin R. McConnell represent the tenants at the Sheffield. Kevin McConnell also represented the tenants at Parc Place.
Firm: Himmelstein, McConnell, Gribben, Donoghue & Joseph
Address: 15 Maiden Lane
New York, NY 10038-4003
Phone: (212) 349-3000 / (212) 349-3003
Fax: (212) 587-0744
We might also want to contact Scott Stringer and Sheldon Silver.
check out http://www.downtownexpress.com/de_206/undercover.html
"Already another tenant group is using the same process to stave off eviction at Manhattan House, a large Upper West Side rental building that is being converted to condos. Legal observers expect their case to also reach a judgment in favor of the tenant group... Assured by the success that residents have had at the Sheffield and potentially also now Manhattan House, tenant groups may begin to grow in size. If tenants control a sizeable enough portion of a building, they may be able to prompt landlords to cancel their conversion plans because it often makes little economic sense to convert just a fraction of a rental building."
I was told I have 60 day letter on the way , so a meeting Sat 11am at Rector Place Park looks like a good idea to me. I was told the apartments need to be vacant by August 30th and not Sept. or Dec, but then one of the doormen said he heard Dec. So I don't know what the true story is. I have a 2 year lease and can't find the 60 day clause in it.
Wait a minute. If you have a 2 year lease that does not have the 60 day clause -- it is actually a separate page called "Owner's Early Termination Rider" -- then it seems to me there's nothing they can do to you -- you should be good until your lease expires!
I cannot get to an 11 am meeting tomorrow (have a prior appointment) but I could probably be there by noon. It should be a beautiful day so I will certainly wander down to the park around noon and see if I find any other neighbors who want to share information and plan strategy....
What a scandal! Afterward, you guys should picket in front of the Rockrose office at Park Ave South. I rented from those trolls for 5 years straight, never been late, never filed a complaint and was a perfect tenatn. I once called to see if I could go month to month for 60 days as I was thinking of buying a property and dealing with that chick at the main office was like talking to the dragon lady of NYC. Not only was she not helpful, she was a full on c@%&. I asked to speak to her boss and she said she didn't have one. Then I asked if she was Ms. Rock or Ms. Rose and to go f%$& herself. Obviously after my last comment, I didn't get the extention. Get naked and go on strike!!!
What is technically going on? This is NOT a straight-forward condo conversion. It is part of a pattern in which a rental building is purchased, tenants nudged out, apartments not being re-rented, significant "construction" being performed, THEN units will be sold. Is this legal, a loophole in condo conversion law? Is this not a condo conversion, officially?
This is the best that I can figure: If the conversion is a non-eviction plan, then tenants can opt to buy or, if not, can stay until the lease expires. But, if the owner has a 60 day early termination right, then I guess the lease expires 60 days after he gives notice. It seems like it is in the best interest of the owner to keep the tenants until after the conversion offering plan is sent out, because of that "warehousing" rule mentioned above. However, apartments that become vacant after the offering plan is sent are not considered "warehoused". I'm guessing that all leases signed after the new owner came in have that 60 day clause. I'm also guessing that the owners don't really want to lose out on the rent before the apartment is sold, so that is probably why they are willing to extend the leases a bit longer.
My lease doesn't seem to have that 60 day clause. I don't know what I'm planning to do, but I'm loosing comfort in the way this is being handled.
Here is a link to a press releases about the sale: http://www.bonjourcapital.com/index.cfm?page=news&id=5
Did you guys have the meeting today ? Any decisions ?
I didn't see anybody down in the park yesterday when I went by around noon -- sorry if I was late and missed people. How about we make Saturday the 12th a DEFINITE and make up some flyers? I will volunteer to do some of the flyers. BTW I sent a tip to Curbed.
and apparently, our building has it's own website so you can set yourself up to receive email notifications about the property....
#62, That website is a fake.
It's from BuildingAddress.com, a group that registered a bunch of building addresses.
You would not be wise to give them any info, unless you like spam.
If you want updates to this, login and click on [Email Updates] or save this building.
How many of you are staying for a chance to buy your apt?
Would the prices be similiar to 225 Rector which should be on the market faster.. That building is almost empty with the exception of some middle income residents that are refusing to move out.
To comment #65, right now it doesn't look like any of us will have a chance to buy our apartments, given what the new owners are trying to do..... forcing all tenants out
We would be keen to do a residents/tenants meeting on Saturday, May 12 in the Rector Place Park (if it rains, we could do it in the gym) - say 11 AM sharp. Comment #61 - we will take you up on your offer for flyers. Could you pls also add a link to this website URL so that attendees can get up to speed on this discussion?
#61 here -- I will make up some flyers and leave in the laundry room, gym, & mail room. Does anyone have time to distribute more broadly / post by elevators? You can e-mail me at email@example.com.
We can't meet in the am on Saturday, the 12th. There is Storytime in Rector Park at 11am. Please change the time b/c the parks would be very mad... just assuming. http://www.bpcparks.org/bpcp/events/events.php#adultsstoriesforallages
So, please take the signs out of the elevator. OR change the time.
At this point signs are up, flyers are scattered around, and a blast e-mail is out. By no means should we disrupt storytime but I think the damage is done. We can always move to the far edge of the park (i.e. the espanade), or to the fitness room.
Or could we just move across South End to the park in front of 225 Rector?
Has anyone called the bureau listed on the link provided in comment 45?
I would call but my grasp of the legal niceties of these situations is limited.
Investor Protection Bureau
- Real Estate Financing Section
120 Broadway, New York, N.Y. 10271
In terms of meeting on Saturday, why not meet at the other oval park on Rector Place, the one closer to the highway? We'll certainly be there and look forward to meeting everyone and discussing how best to protect our interests. We have a lease expiring end of July this year with no break clause, but are interested in finding out a) if there might be an option to buy and b) what the lease extension options might be.
If you'd like to consider putting a shorter URL on the flyers, I've created a tinyurl that leads to this page. The address is http://www.tinyurl.com/33LVCM. Thanks!
i'm a tenant, but can't make the meeting on saturday 5/21. will anyone be posting minutes or something like that?
Hi, kudos to whoever started this link and I will be at the meeting Saturday...
I think more notices should go up again in the elevators and it may be worth sliding information under doors so that everyone is made aware.
Hi, kudos to whoever started this link and I will be at the meeting Saturday...
If you have a lease that goes beyond October (and you don't have the 60-day termination clause that seems to have been introduced by Rockrose in Oct 06), please contact me. We signed a 2-year lease in the summer of 06, and we know of 2 others in the same situation. We have heard there are more people in this situation. Please contact us at...
Thanks. We'll be there on Saturday.
The new owners have not cashed our rent check for May. Are other people in the same situation?
I can't make the meeting on Saturday but would love an update. I received a lease renewal from Rock Rose in March with a 15% increase. I signed and returned but they did not return back. I sent in the May check with the new prices which they cashed. Then over the weekend, I received a package from the Cooper Square saying that the lease had been"extended' for 5 months to Septebmer 30. I called them and went thru the details and they said the other lease had not been executed and that I had 48 hours to sign this paperwork or be out of the apartment by the end of May. All the offending termination clauses are in this document. I had been told by the super previousy that all tenants would be offered an insider price. I am interested to hear if this can still be accomplished.
We received our renewal six weeks after we were told we would and only 3 weeks before the end of the lease. They have offered 4 months at a 25% increase. We have declined and are moving out. What slightly bothered me is that Laura Rodriguez suggested they could try and retain our security deposit. This is clearly unacceptable as we have not been given our renewal in good time. I will be happy to see the back of the building and the end of living life through Chinese whispers.
Our lease expires May 31. We were offered an lease "extension" until Sept 30 at a 15 % increase.
Can't make the May 12 meeting. Please keep us posted on next meeting and/or minutes or information distributed. In an early life I was a tenant organizer and know lots of tenant leaders and tenant attorneys. Ultimately, i don't think that there is much of a leg to stand on but as a large group -who knows - maybe we can get some additional time or get some press - always a good negotiating tactic.
if you would like to be sure to be included in an e-mail list, please send your e-mail address to firstname.lastname@example.org -- hope to see plenty of folks tomorrow!
I don't know why so many people seem to be holding their breath about being able to buy their apartment. I think it's just propoganda based mostly on that one-sided article in the Battery Park Broad Sheet. Cooper Square said they are planning on doin "extensive renovations" beginning in September or October and they want everyone out of the building. The new owner of 333 rector bought our old building (88 greenwich). They kicked everyone out in Jan 06. Almost 18 months of "extensive renovation" later and I don't think there's more than a handful of occupied units in the whole building. At night time that building is completely dark. Does anyone really think that they'll terminate our leases, force us to move elsewhere and then, after a year of renovation they'll contact ex-tenants and offer a deep discount below market prices? Why would they? Contrast that to the Exchange Building on Broad Street across from the NY Stock Exchange. Tenants there were given a book listing all of the apartments, their square footage and prices. They got the book before their leases ended. They were given the opportunity to buy. They still had to get all their stuff out for 90 days while the owners renovated, but then they were able to move back in. We haven't seen anything like that in our building. Granted, every building is different. When all is said and done, I predict this building will be under renovation for many months, and when the renovation is over everyone will be given the opportunity to buy at market prices -- whether or not they used to live here.
This morning a number of people shared their experiences and concerns. A major theme was that communication from Buttonwood (sometimes via their agent Cooper Square, sometimes directly) has been spotty and inconsistent. Different tenants are hearing different things. A number of tenants have been told to vacate the building by the end of June. It appears that Buttonwood is trying to get the building substantially empty by the end of September 2007, or possibly by the end of December 2007. Short-term extensions and new short-term leases are being offered. Tenants who have 2-year leases that run through fall of 2008 are receiving buy-out offers. Tenants whose leases are soon to expire are getting little if any information. Many tenants would like the option to buy their apartments; others would like to extend their leases as long as possible; some would just like a little more time and flexibility as they arrange to move out.
Naturally, depending on individual personal situations, tenants' goals may vary, but one goal we all share is to be treated fairly and reasonably. Open communication among ourselves and with Buttonwood should help us achieve that goal.
Overall there was consensus that as a group we should
* establish ways to facilitate communication among ourselves
* research the situation and understand our rights
* clarify our goals
* reach out to the neighborhood, the government, and the press to optimize our bargaining position
Several people volunteered for committees to address these objectives. Please, anyone else who would like to help, jump in!
* Set up a Yahoo Group and a website.
* Ask for a meeting with Buttonwood.
* Meet again as a group next weekend.
Look for a communication on these items soon!
I hope the conversion doesn't yield junk like 225 Rector Place.