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This entry was published on 2014-09-22
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Warranty of habitability
Real Property (RPP) CHAPTER 50, ARTICLE 7
§ 235-b. Warranty of habitability. 1. In every written or oral lease
or rental agreement for residential premises the landlord or lessor
shall be deemed to covenant and warrant that the premises so leased or
rented and all areas used in connection therewith in common with other
tenants or residents are fit for human habitation and for the uses
reasonably intended by the parties and that the occupants of such
premises shall not be subjected to any conditions which would be
dangerous, hazardous or detrimental to their life, health or safety.
When any such condition has been caused by the misconduct of the tenant
or lessee or persons under his direction or control, it shall not
constitute a breach of such covenants and warranties.

2. Any agreement by a lessee or tenant of a dwelling waiving or
modifying his rights as set forth in this section shall be void as
contrary to public policy.

3. In determining the amount of damages sustained by a tenant as a
result of a breach of the warranty set forth in the section, the court;

(a) need not require any expert testimony; and

(b) shall, to the extent the warranty is breached or cannot be cured
by reason of a strike or other labor dispute which is not caused
primarily by the individual landlord or lessor and such damages are
attributable to such strike, exclude recovery to such extent, except to
the extent of the net savings, if any, to the landlord or lessor by
reason of such strike or labor dispute allocable to the tenant's
premises, provided, however, that the landlord or lesser has made a good
faith attempt, where practicable, to cure the breach.

(c) where the premises is subject to regulation pursuant to the local
emergency housing rent control law, the emergency tenant protection act
of nineteen seventy-four, the rent stabilization law of nineteen hundred
sixty-nine or the city rent and rehabilitation law, reduce the amount
awarded hereunder by the total amount of any rent reduction ordered by
the state division of housing and community renewal pursuant to such
laws or act, awarded to the tenant, from the effective date of such rent
reduction order, that relates to one or more matters for which relief is
awarded hereunder.