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Friday, October 11, 2013

What Now?



Posted in the comment section of the official Facebook page of PCVST, and surely to be deleted, but not here:

Dear PCV/ST owners: you are human trash. You who are now in charge did not spend any money installing these video intercoms back in 2009. Now you want to collect in perpetuity for something you expended no effort or money in creating? You want to charge my family of four $840 and then an additional $15 a month because of some crap that no one asked for and an owner OTHER THAN YOU installed? You want to line the pockets--nay, stuff the pockets of your tiny cabal of bigshots at the expense of hundreds of NYC families, thousands of individual tenants? I got two words for you. Back down. And then I have two more.

Reached 10 11 13 16 19 22 "likes" before being deleted, a very high number for a "like" on that page.

I have to tell you that I'm getting very pissed off at what I've been reading on the TA and PCVST Facebook pages about how CWCapital/CompassRock is handling issues these days. I alternate between simmering rage and tears welling in my eyes at the incidents of pure heartlessness and ineptitude coming from management. One poor woman and her family are close to becoming homeless. This is what she posted on the PCVST Facebook page:

I was informed by the leasing office as of yesterday, LEGAL dep. is refusing to approve my application for apt in PCV and i can't even get in touch with them as to the reason why. Our leases are signed and certified rent checks and money orders are submitted, key cards made and key pickup already scheduled. My current lease is up October 14 in Stuyvesant town. The accounting department continues to clear out rent checks 3 weeks after submission. How am I being penalized for the accounting department continuing to submit inaccurate rent statements. As of right now my family is without a home in 5 days and all my money is in leasing office in the form of certified checks made out to PCV ST. Now the apt is back on the market, no home in 5 days. 


If you, CWCapital/CompassRock, can't do your job properly, then move aside, as quickly as possible, and let someone else take over.  And quit sucking people dry of all their money at every single "opportune" step.  And have some decency, too, when you deal with tenants.  How can you sleep restfully at night knowing what you are doing to this community???

UPDATE FROM THE TENANTS ASSOCIATION:

HCR Issues Rent Increase Order for ST Video Intercom

The Rent Order increases the legal rent for residents of Stuyvesant Town by an average of $12-$15 per month. The TA will challenge the MCI by filing a Petition for Administrative Review. We need your help to do this.

We know of several buildings that received the MCI Order yesterday. We are in the process of contacting our attorney to evaluate this Order and have notified our elected officials. We will get back to the community after discussion with counsel.

In the meantime, when you receive this Order, it is vital that you hold on to it as we will need a copy. Then read our Knowledge Base article on what to do next at this link: http://stpcvta.org/kb/entry/14/. Also, please send us your docket number (top right hand corner of form) by clicking here.

Mounting a challenge will engender legal fees. We fight for all tenants, so if you have not yet joined the Tenants Association, please consider doing so now. If you are already a member, please consider a special additional contribution.


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PLEASE: WE NEED YOUR FINANCIAL SUPPORT

Your Tenants Association is run exclusively by volunteers.
Please help defray the cost of legal, professional, communication, and meeting expenses by joining us or renewing your membership today. To save time and effort, donate online. Or mail a check payable to: ST/PCV TA, P.O. Box 1202, Stuyvesant Station, NY 10009-1202. Thanks.

43 comments:

Anonymous said...

I've got a two-word comment for CW/CR: FUCK OFF.

Anonymous said...

Agree entirely with you STR. Unfortunately, they all sleep just fine and have no problem with what they see when they get up the next day and look in the mirror. If only there was a way to get these immoral predators out of here now before it is utterly too late

Anonymous said...

This latest MCI pushes me just over the border to be eligible for SCRIE. Mixed blessing, I guess. When are these vile bloodsucking parasites going to be out of here?

Stuy Town Reporter said...

Regarding the MCI increase, there are still points very unclear, including what it states about the J-51 abatement, which Tishman-Speyer did receive. Also, would the sum of $700 plus, if mandated, need to be paid in one lump sum? I find it extraordinary if so. I actually thought we had paid this MCI a long time ago, so arising as it does now, and from Tishman-Speyer, is surprising. I assume the TA and Garodnick are looking into this. And CWCapital should respond, too. We should get some clarity soon. I hope. Because at this point, tenants are lost in random speculation and distress.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

I'm still not old enough for SCRIE, but it will be a delight to be able to take advantage of it, depending on the future situation here.

Anonymous said...

Do not pay it. These cheap video intecoms offer NO benefit over the land line voice intercoms they replaced. Have we seen any documentable decrease in illegal entries or muggings/burglaries since they went in? I think not, so what's the benefit for tenants?

We must all hang together, or...

Bad press is the last thing these assholes want. Look how CW's toadies hop whenever yet another exasperated victim spills their guts on Yelp.

"Oh we're so sorry, it's all a misunderstanding, please contact us and we'll certainly make it right". They know most prospective renters are googling PCVST, and negative publicity hurts their bottom line.


If a large majority of tenants refuse to cough up, it's a story. And in the current post-Bloomberg political environment, it's contagious. Let's give them all the bad press they deserve!

Anonymous said...

Isn't there some law that they can only charge a small percentage of the retroactive charges for an MCI? Or does these bloodsuckers have a way around this? It seems to me that they defy all DHCR rules without any penalty. Well, I don't have $700+ to spare, so they will have to spread my payments if they are going to get them at all. Having said that, my intercom has never consistently worked since Day One. I can never hear what the person asking to be buzzed in says and when I do buzz them in, the door stays locked until they piggyback behind someone entering with a card. Otherwise, I have to go downstairs and let them in. I called a neighbor today from the lobby because I had found her purse that she had accidentally dropped outside. She could see me, but she couldn't hear me and I couldn't hear her. We are expected to pay for non-functioning intercoms? Someone needs to look into this. It's a scam. Where is the TA on this? Let them look up from their infernal condo plans and deal with problems we are having here and now as renters. I pay my membership dues every year plus some, but I am beginning to wonder why. Seems they don't do much. I remember when the TA had teeth.

Anonymous said...

TA, if you really want any financial help and support from us, then you start showing some interest in us as renters, not potential condo conversion buyers. We are never going to buy this place because it is a pie-in-the sky idea and most of us wouldn't even want to sink our money into such a money pit. However, we are still renters, i.e., TENANTS. So please be a good TENANTS' ASSOCIATION and help us with this total disaster of "management" that isn't even a landlord. We are hurting badly as a result of CW/CR implementing all kinds of illegal and dishonest practices and we need a TENANTS' ASSOCIATION. If you can't help us as renters, then please disband and go away.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

The TA is the only game in town (Stuy Town), so I donated. This is an important issue.

Anonymous said...

To all the TA haters, did you not read STR's tread? The TA, in order to mount a challenge, needs your docket # sent to them ASAP. Copy and paste to your browser address line.



http://www.stpcvta.org/kb/contact/?question=Type+your+docket+number+below+this+line.&subject=ST+Video+Intercom+MCI&category_id=23

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but I think that piling on the TA is a bit much. The TA has fought every MCI that has come along for as long as I can remember. The real problem is with DHCR and their rubber stamp approval of these MCIs, which, of course, are nothing more than landlord give always. There is no reason why tenants should have an MCI for anything added on to their base rent FOREVER. The TA currently has much better representation than it had in the past so we will see what happens this time around.

Anonymous said...

Sadly, there is absolutely NO incentive for CW Capital to step aside. Last time I checked, they earned $625,000 per month in fees here. That's over $7,000,000 a year. Would you leave if you didn't gave to? I think not.

Anonymous said...

Agree, agree, agree, STR. All of us must donate to the TA or we are all doomed.

Anonymous said...

I believe that you cannot legally be expected to pay in excess of 6% of your rent in order to pay off a retroactive charge. That's how it worked with the windows, spread out over the months, capped at 6% until the last month which was the balance due. Someone, please correct me if this policy has changed.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

I certainly don't ever remember a retroactive lump sum amount added to the smaller monthly charge.

Anonymous said...

The woman who is being screwed out of her home and money by the inept "Legal Department" should get hold of every news station and newspaper and tell her story. What they are doing to her is criminal and I mean criminal in the literal sense.

Anonymous said...

Even though I sympathize mightily and am also affected by what is going on here with CW Capital, you need to keep in mind that CW Capital has a fiduciary duty to the bondholders and will do everything in its power to increase the rent rolls here to the highest levels possible so that when -- IF, but that's another story -- they sell the property it will bring the highest price possible. The only way their price gouging of tenants will stop is when they exit the property. And, as I have said here previously, sadly, there is absolutely NO incentive for CW Capital to step aside. Last time I checked, they earned $625,000 per month in fees here. That's over $7,000,000 a year. Would you leave if you didn't gave to? I think not.

Anonymous said...

How is she homeless? i don't understand. does she live here and is renewing? why all the bank checks?

Is it a new tenant?

Stuy Town Reporter said...

If I get the story correctly, the summary is that her family was offered another apartment, and everything was set (with rent checks handed over) and then legal informed her that she could not occupy the new apartment and she has leave the old one.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

>>Even though I sympathize mightily and am also affected by what is going on here with CW Capital, you need to keep in mind that CW Capital has a fiduciary duty to the bondholders and will do everything in its power to increase the rent rolls here to the highest levels possible...<<

I think we understand this. Again, I'm not speaking from a legal or "fiduciary duty" standpoint (the latter being a blank check to heartlessly ride over the tenants here). We (the public and the private sector) have to get over doing things and accepting things just because the books say we can. There is something that rises above this: plain humanity. And I realize, of course, that humanity is not a legal requirement for anyone.

Stuy Town Reporter said...

Furthermore, the backstory involves Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, both of which are supposed to HELP families and communities with housing. What is their DUTY in all of this?

Anonymous said...

I'm a TA volunteer building leader.
There are 110 buildings in ST-PCV. The 12 or so people in the TA's leadership can't be a constant presence in every building. So the TA's tried to set up a system making direct communication between tenants and them possible. They have a message center so people can contact them by phone. The message center needs volunteers to staff it. They have a FaceBook page moderated by volunteers. They send email blasts. And perhaps most importantly, they have tried to have a volunteer leader in every building to pass info info back and forth. Once a month builders meet to go over things with each other and TA leadership.

The system obviously can't work without volunteers and the system really breaks down in buildings without leaders. A number of buildings don't have them despite past efforts to recruit. There will probably be an effort to get volunteers into those buildings to get the word out on filing these PARs and to try again to recruit someone to act as a building leader.

Frankly, the constant carping about the TA is frustrating and annoying. If you don't know what the TA is doing it's as much your fault as it is theirs. Become a building leader yourself, because either your building doesn't have one or help the one you have who apparently isn't very effective. If you're any good at it, you'll get calls from the TA to help out with other things because there's always plenty that needs to get done. The above also applies if you don't like what the TA's doing or how it's doing it.

Thanks.

Anonymous said...

The only a fiduciary duty CW Capitol has to the bondholders is to recover their investments, not to sell the property at the highest price possible.

Anonymous said...

Oy Vey. I just posted on the wrong thread. What I said: At the risk of sounding like a devil's advocate, I am wondering if the old intercom system would still work now that Verizon is not maintaining copper wire landline service and forcing everybody to switch to FIOS or TWC or RCN or simply forego landline service. That said, there is no excuse for management installing non-working crap to replace the old system. Also, isn't it a landlord's obligation to provide intercom service, just as it is their obligation to provide a stove, fridge, etc.? I don't believe this is something tenants should have to pay for under the laws pertaining to apartment buildings.

Anonymous said...

"Dear PCV/ST owners: you are human trash. You who are now in charge did not spend any money installing these video intercoms back in 2009. Now you want to collect in perpetuity for something you expended no effort or money in creating? You want to charge my family of four $840 and then an additional $15 a month because of some crap that no one asked for and an owner OTHER THAN YOU installed? You want to line the pockets--nay, stuff the pockets of your tiny cabal of bigshots at the expense of hundreds of NYC families, thousands of individual tenants? I got two words for you. Back down. And then I have two more."

Management finally got a clue and took this post down from their Facebook page, but it has been posted and re-posted on the TA's Facebook page a bunch of times. Yeah for screen shots! It needs to be posted on Yelp, too, so we can all find it "Useful". Hopefully, that will happen soon.

Anonymous said...

What the law considers an MCI and that they're the gift that keeps giving in perpetuity for landlords is disgusting--but legal as things stand. The person who posted that the intercom MCI was an outrage is right--but the reasoning is faulty. A new landlord (or manager) takes on the debts and obligations of the previous owner and reaps certain benefits, such as an MCI finally getting approved--all legal.

When the rent stabilization laws were last renewed, one of the small comforts to tenants was that they would have to pay 1/60 of the cost of the MCI per month, not 1/40 as previously. Of course this cost is added to the rent forever.

Rent stabilization laws will have to be renewed in 2015--THAT'S RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER, PEOPLE. I think that Tenants PAC will be pushing to put a limit to how long landlords can collect for MCIs. Since the recoupment of the cost takes five years, they're entitled to an additional percentage--but that should be it, especially since all these MCIs are depreciating and could be replaced before the original one is paid off.

We're already seeing CW renovate apartments that have already been renovated--what's up with that? CW is now in the position of having pushed legal rents so high that nobody will pay them so they have to offer what's known as preferential rents.

Bottom line for those affected by this MCI: Be outraged, file a PAR, get your neighbors to fill out the paperwork, and remember that it's the TA that organizes these efforts to get us some justice.

There are many more MCIs that have been held in abeyance at DHCR. We can all look forward to getting hit with more of these in the next couple of years, if not sooner. And, yes, it's legal to ask you to pay the entire cost if you move out.

Anonymous said...


Why won't they renew the woman and her family? they need renters, advertise like crazy, promoting the heck out of stuytown, so ?

They have her checks, so what is their reason for the NO lease now? They have most likely given her a reason.

???

Stuy Town Reporter said...

That is unclear and what she's trying to find out. The assumption is her previous payment history, which may have been "late." But there have been so many recent glitches with payments made on time but tagged as late, that it is all a big mess. These guys are not running the show very well. But they are on schedule to open up the Ice Rink.

Anonymous said...

Compass Rock was put together six months before they took over the property from Rose. The other properties in their portfolio are mostly small condos in the south. They have no experience managing a property this size.

They hold secret focus groups and foster roommate situations. In the leasing office they mix and match 20-something's in need of a roommate(s) to rent. "Do you need a roommate? So does this guy!" I've seen it. Strangers living with strangers nextdoor to your children.

Add to the mix these buildings are too old to sustain a high maintenance clientele on the extremely limited budget they allocate to real building maintenance, not flowers, leaf blowing and carnivals. Public Safety is limited and neutered. Packages and mail are always being stolen. How many of these buildings have black mold due to flooding and poor repair work? What happens when the next hurricane hits? They still haven't recovered from the last one A YEAR AGO.

The size of the property and the ineptitude of the staff make it a bad place to live. All the Facebook pages are exploding with accounting horror stories. You can't get management or accounting on the phone because they are a voicemail only system. Why would anyone want to rent here? For the money Stuy Town charges you can do so much better in the city.

Anonymous said...

Opening the skating rink on time means $$$$$$$ in their pocket, both in actual $$$ in fees and PR to get more renters in here to pay ever higher prices for apartments.

Anonymous said...

CWCAPITAL can thank their accounting department for creating hundreds of brand assassins. The tenants have taken to various Facebook pages, Twitter, local blogs, real estate review sites, college message boards, etc. to warn people about renting here. What CWCAPITAL is doing to their CUSTOMERS is criminal.

Anonymous said...

Last rent-stabilized tenant in a building being renovated: http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20131014/east-village/lone-rent-stabilized-tenant-fights-keep-home-amid-construction-zone

Anonymous said...

No quiet holiday enjoyment here facing the Playground 10. Ice rink installation work commenced today. For 4 hours and counting, nonstop high-pitched generators, beeping backup trucks, mechanical power tools etc ... I hope people who patronize the rink realize how their enjoyment is underwritten by the torment suffered by neighbors whose homes overlook the rink operations.

Anonymous said...

The entitled ones who skate on the rink could care less about your discomfort and problems. That's what this place has become.

Anonymous said...

@ anon 1:36: I thought I was the only one who noticed that horrible noise today. Beeping, banging, sawing, shouting... I realize it's a nice little activity for the kids but those of us who are unfortunate enough to live above it have this to look forward to:

-Two more weeks of banging, sawing, shouting, beeping.
-Three months of, every few hours without fail, loud BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! noises reverberating through out apartments as a frontloader clears the snow into a filthy pile in front of 18 Oval.
-Then, when it's over, another two weeks of banging, shouting and beeping when it's taken down again.

For anyone who works at home, is retired, or has the audacity to actually be in their home during daylight hours, the noise level is becoming unbearable. Those f'ing leaf blowers are out 6 days a week for hours on end. The landscaping went on for months, more beeping and shouting.

Anonymous said...

My husband and I were forced out of our home over the summer due to Roberts. We couldn't be happier in our new apartment. We warn as many people as we can NOT to rent in Stuy Town. Good luck everyone!

Anonymous said...

The 1/60 vs. 1/40 cost pertains to apartments that have been renovated and rented to NEW TENANTS. That has ZERO to do with the MCI's that you are discussing. State law is very complicated with regard to rents. Perhaps you should try to understand it before making silly statements.

Anonymous said...

"The entitled ones who skate on the rink could care less about your discomfort and problems. That's what this place has become. "

Look at the PCVST TA FB page and see all the likes on how people love the rink. So many entitled ones, so little time. Sad.

Anonymous said...

"I believe that you cannot legally be expected to pay in excess of 6% of your rent in order to pay off a retroactive charge. ... Someone, please correct me if this policy has changed."

This is almost correct. The 6% is determined by what your rent was when the application was filed, which in this case, was several years ago.

DHCR fact sheet #24 says: "For rent stabilized apartments, the rent increase collectible in any one year may not exceed 6% of the tenant's rent in NYC...at the time the application was filed."

In addition, SCRIE and DRIE tenants are "exempt from paying any portion of the MCI adjustment that would raise their total rent to over 1/3 of their total disposable income. However, an increase in the security deposit resulting from the MCI rent increase must be paid by both SCRIE and DRIE tenants."

Anonymous said...

FOR THOSE OF YOU who like to post where they live and how nice and affordable it is:

POST THE BUILDING ADDRESS OR STREETS, COMPANIES that you rented from!!!! PLEASE

we need advice for good buildings/ landlords.

Anonymous said...

I received one of these notices today, with the exact same spiel: Two tenants objected ....."

Does this mean that it has already been served and reviewed and only two tenants objected, therefore it's law? What's the point of a PAR if the objections have already been submitted, reviewed and addressed? Sounds like a done deal to me.

Anonymous said...



ditto on the where did you move to? If it's Colorado, NJ, Ct, NOT HELPFUL.... ???

Anonymous said...

what happened to the woman and her new apartment? no posts ?