Manhattan Attorney for Condos

Legal Options for Condo Boards to Deal with a Hoarder in Manhattan

nyc-lawyer-for-hoarder-condo-coop-01Rental property owners have a basic procedure and remedy under the law when hoarding issues become a violation of the lease agreement. However, condo apartment owners cannot evict a resident based upon how they keep their home. Board members must take care to balance the requirements of the community as a whole against the privacy rights of anyone engaging in hoarding activities.

Knowing when It’s Time to Step In

Fortunately, condo apartment owners in Manhattan aren’t powerless when it comes to fighting the risks associated with hoarding. A condo apartment association has legal grounds to lodge a complaint when a repeated combination of the following scenarios occur:

  • The smell from a hoarder’s unit is affecting neighbors,
  • A reasonably perceived fire risk presents itself,
  • Insect infestation is a problem and is infecting other units,
  • Identified mold problems that can be spread through vents and walls,
  • Debris and trash outside the unit that is damaging property values.

attorney-hoarder-hoarding-nyc-coop-and-condo-board-02Getting involved too early, when there is no visible health or security problem, can expose the board to liability. The rule of thumb is that if the hoarding does not threaten or impact other units, condo boards may have to comply with reasonable accommodation laws like any other disability.

Condo apartment boards do not have rights of entry like normal landlords. However, due to their nature, condo associations are more permissive of entry than ssinglefamily HOAs. Either way, speaking with a real estate attorney for condo apartments in Manhattan is probably the best ways to find out inspection and entry options for board members.

Severe cases allow for the condo board to petition the courts for an order granting access to the unit.

Legal Options for Condo Apartment Boards to Deal with Residential Hoarding

Every action as a board must be reinforced by documentation as mandated by Manhattan and New York State laws. Ensure that all documents contain the language that specifies when hoarding ends up being a problem and authorizations for the board to intervene.

The best way to legally monitor things is to require an annual code inspection of the unit to inspect certain elements of the condo, like fire sprinkler systems. This will help condo owners acquire information about potential hoarding activity.

What to Do If a Hoarding Situation Has Been Discovered

attorney-lawyer-for-condo-coop-transactions-03As stated above, a real estate attorney for condo apartments in Manhattan can provide a customized solution for your unique situation. However, it’s normally okay to offer the following to the dweller in good faith:

  1. Offer community help with cleaning, laundry, and debris removal.
  2. Give a referral to a specialty cleaning and sanitation service provider.
  3. Report the problem to the NYC Health Department.
  4. Offer to help find a therapist to address the hoarding and psychological problems.

The board of a condo apartment building should never take it upon themselves to force someone to remove the personal property from the home, no matter how disgusting. If your Manhattan condo board needs to discuss a hoarding situation with a real estate attorney, then you should contact Aronstam Law. We have many years of experience in looking out for people like you.

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