NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Landlord-tenant disputes are a way of life in New York City, but a Staten Island landlord feels his current battle one hits a shocking low.
As CBS2’s Steve Langford reported, a resident allegedly will not leave a home she rented on a public assistance voucher – even though her voucher has been transferred to another landlord.
The occupants of the townhouse in the Mariners Harbor section of Staten Island declined to open the door for CBS2. They also declined to open the door for the landlord – who said his rental property, now for sale, is a mess in more ways than one.
“She’s not returning my phone calls, nor my emails, so I’d like to sell the property as soon as possible. We have many people interested looking at it,” said landlord Yong Lim. “But she simply does not cooperate.”
Lim said tenant Shontay Jordan is not just no longer paying rent, but is also getting city housing authorities to transfer her public rent assistance to another landlord while she lives in Lim’s townhouse for free.
The New York City Housing Authority, which is responsible for Section 8 housing, said it is investigating the case.
“In such instances when a resident is found to be occupying an apartment when a transfer has been enacted and unwilling to leave, NYCHA may take a number of actions including moving to suspend Section 8,” NYCHA said in a statement.
But in the meantime, the landlord is exasperated by the tenor of his dealings with the city.
“She’s just a squatter,” Lim said. “(The city says), ‘Well, you have to contact a lawyer, but we can’t do anything about it,’ but I said, ‘Yet, you’re still paying rent to somebody else.’”
Lim is trying to get a housing court judge to issue an eviction order – one of the most painfully slow bureaucratic exercises in New York City.
He said he has been trying to sell the property for a year now to help pay for college for his children.