The extension of the 1982 Loft Law last June looked like a win for tenants of illegal loft conversions in Bushwick, Williamsburg, Long Island City, and other 'hoods, because the law promised to legalize those conversions as long as they met a few conditions. Tenants who'd lived in their lofts for at least a year between January 2008 and December 2009?in buildings with at least three occupied lofts?could apply for legal status from the city's Loft Board. Shockingly, landlords have not been so on board with this idea. The residents of Bushwick's 360 Jefferson accused their landlord of shutting off their hot water and plugging their faucets when they filed for legalization. Now, the residents of 338 Berry Street are taking their landlord to court, the Brooklyn Paper reports.
The tenants allege the landlord attempted to evict them and cut off one resident's water. The loft law contains a loophole for buildings with hazardous industrial uses, and the tenants of 338 Berry say their landlord may try to use a photography lab and woodworking shop on the building's first floor to get through that loophole. She's already filed permits to renovate the building with solar panels. Wouldn't want those loft tenants interfering with any luxury conversion plans!
· Berry St. loft tenants seek protections, but get harassed instead [BK Paper]
· Illegal Loft Tenants and Landlords Disagreeing on Loft Law [Curbed]