With its spa and 24-hour concierge, 37 Wall Street reeks of luxury. But a New York City Housing Court judge ruled last month that a market-rate apartment there should be rent-regulated since the landlord has been receiving tax credits from the city.
Welcome to the Stuyvesant Town ripple effect: Market-rate tenants may find they’re entitled to rent overcharges or other protections. Landlords worry they could find themselves in foreclosure.
At 37 Wall Street — where the owner got a city tax break for converting Financial District offices into apartments — the judge invoked the Stuy Town ruling that found Tishman Speyer illegally deregulated apartments while receiving a different city tax credit.
“This is a widespread issue,” said Garrett Wright, an attorney with the Urban Justice Center. He won a preliminary injunction for tenants on the verge of eviction at 1600 Sedgwick Ave. in the Bronx. A state Supreme Court judge cited the Stuy Town case and ruled the owner, Riverview Redevelopment, a recipient of local tax credits, had to charge rent regulated rents.
The Rent Stabilization Association, a landlord group, has been fielding frantic calls from building owners, Mitchell Posilkin said. “There have been billions of dollars borrowed and lent with the understanding” that they could increase rents to market rate while getting tax breaks from the city.