Home improvement contractors are infamously unreliable. It seems like everyone has a horror story about a contractor not finishing a project on time, or using sub-standard materials to finish a job. This article will discuss a few ways a homeowner can find a reliable home improvement contractor, and to protect himself.
New York City’s Tenant Protection Act protects tenants from landlord harassment but is balanced to stop frivolous claims by tenants. Landlords have a pecuniary interest in evicting tenants residing in rent-stabilized or rent-controlled apartments. While there are tenants who illegally sublet their regulated apartments for a profit while they live elsewhere, there are also instances where innocent tenants find themselves being harassed by their landlords. The Act protects tenants who are being harassed by landlords looking to evict them.
The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), which regulates the national banks, issued a report on Wednesday regarding residential mortgages. Many mortgages that were modified in the first half of last year defaulted within a year. This has led banks and lenders to realize that borrowers need to be given a bigger break in order for a mortgage modification to work. Banks are also more capable of giving the needed breaks because they now have more money on their balance sheets than last year. Most importantly, Obama’s Making Homes Affordable program provided further incentives for banks to modify mortgages. The change in policy has been reflected in the results. There has been a 75% increase in agreements meant to help borrowers, including modifications, from last year. Also, the percentage of modifications that involve a reduction in principal tripled from 3.1% to 10%. Banks are not required to lower principal, but have been doing so anyway to try and forestall costly foreclosures.
A borrower who is struggling with their residential mortgage should strongly consider a mortgage modification. The eligibility criteria are relatively simple. The terms of the government’s mortgage modification program are also straightforward.
The federal government has worked with banks and other lenders on a mortgage modification program that will reduce the monthly mortgage payment for qualifying homeowners. The Obama Administration enacted the Making Homes Affordable program out of recognition that the current recession has had grave effects on the ability of many hardworking Americans to stay in their homes. The mortgage modification program strives to protect homeowners who have been making a good faith attempt to pay their bills, but need help to stay out of foreclosure. This article will discuss the eligibility for the mortgage modification program under the Making Homes Affordable program. [Read more…]
The prototypical eviction involves a landlord and a tenant who has not paid his rent. However, evictions come up in other situations. A landlord might evict a squatter. Or a roommate who is not on the lease may be evicted by his fellow roommates. The legal process used in all these situations are the same: a summary eviction proceeding filed in Civil Court. (A rather important, though rare, exception: if the premises being rented lacks a proper certificate of occupancy from the city, you have to bring an action for ejectment in NY Supreme Court. This is really slow and troublesome.) [Read more…]