This is a recent post with the New York Times with a few Real Estate Q&As.  I follow their real estate section quite extensively so you will surely see many posts from them.

The Parking Meter Will Keep Running

Q My wife and I are rent-stabilized tenants. Included in our lease is a parking spot in the building’s garage. Our car was recently stolen and we might not replace it. Must we pay for the spot until our current lease expires?

A “Yes, the writer must pay for the parking space until the end of the current rent-stabilized lease term," and may even have to continue to pay for the space under a renewal lease, said Thomas P. Higgins, a landlord-tenant lawyer in Manhattan. He noted, however, that since parking spaces are usually in high demand, the landlord might allow the writer to give up the space immediately. “It’s worth asking,” he said.

No Reserve Fund at New Condo

Q I bought a condominium in a new-construction building two years ago. The sponsor did not create any emergency reserve fund for the building. Was there any legal obligation to do so?

A Allen H. Brill, a Manhattan co-op and condo lawyer, said that under state law and regulations relating to new-construction condominiums, a sponsor is not required to establish a reserve fund. In fact, the typical offering plan often explicitly states that no provision has been made for any contribution by the sponsor toward the reserve fund. But, Mr. Brill said, sponsors often provide for a “working capital fund” to be financed by unit buyers in the amount of about one or two months’ common charges to meet immediate expenses.

Landlord’s Liability in a Burglary

Q I moved into my apartment at the beginning of August. The landlord knew the previous tenant left on bad terms and failed to replace locks after telling us he would. Later that month, our apartment was robbed by someone with keys to the outside and apartment doors. Can the landlord be held accountable for the value of our stolen property?

A “I think there may be sufficient facts here to make a claim against the landlord for the damages,” said Kent Karlsson, a Manhattan tenant lawyer. He said that the landlord’s knowledge of the problems with the former tenant, along with his failure to change the locks, would bolster that claim. The tenant can sue the landlord in Small Claims Court if the loss is less than $5,000, and in civil court if it is more. “The tenant should have proof of the facts he alleges, such as testimony or documents, and proof of the value of the property that was stolen,” Mr. Karlsson said.

Dealing With Fees on Security Deposits

Q A landlord of a rent-stabilized apartment is allowed to charge 1 percent of the security deposit as an administrative fee. If the interest rate on such a deposit is less than 1 percent, can the landlord take the fee from the deposit itself?

A “The law that allows for the fee is imprecise and was enacted at a time when interest rates on security deposits were above 1 percent,” said Robert Sokolski, a Manhattan lawyer who represents tenants. He said that while the law is as the writer states, the Legislature apparently believed that there would remain a balance to be paid to the tenant. So, Mr. Sokolski said the intent appears to limit the 1 percent to the interest paid on the account and not on the account itself.