Borough of Fort Lee, NJ
Bergen County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
A. 
Owners of multifamily dwellings of five units or more shall report any vacancy or unrented apartment to the Rent Leveling Board if the vacancy or nonrental continues for 10 continuous days.
B. 
Owners will report the rental of the unit to the Rent Leveling Board. The rental report shall include: address of building, designation of the unit, data of rental, rent charged, name of new tenant, date of move-in by the new tenant.
The following are exempt from the provisions of this article:
A. 
Units in owner-occupied dwellings where there are five units or fewer and one of the units is owner-occupied.
B. 
Units in newly constructed buildings which are being rented for the first time. After the first rental, such units will be subject to the provisions of this article.
C. 
Units in a dwelling where the owner has been finally registered for conversion of the building into a condominium or cooperative pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2A:18-61.1, so long as the conversion plan is not abandoned.
D. 
Units in hotels or motels.
All such units shall be rented and occupied by a tenant within 60 days after the end of the preceding tenancy, which shall be defined as the last day of residence by the preceding tenant(s), except where an extension has been granted by the Rent Board under the provisions of § 324-45E below, in which event the unit shall be rented and occupied within the time period specified in the extension. Failure to comply with the requirements of § 324-45E shall be considered a violation of this article and subject the owner to the penalties set forth herein.
A. 
An owner may apply for an extension of the time period set forth in § 324-44 where the condition of the unit or other special circumstances make rental within such time period impossible. In order to obtain an extension, the owner must submit an application in writing to the Rent Leveling Board within 30 days or less from the date the preceding tenancy ended, setting forth with specificity:
(1) 
The reasons that the unit cannot be rented within such time period;
(2) 
The steps the owner shall take to remedy the conditions that make it impossible to rent the dwelling unit; and
(3) 
The date by which the dwelling unit shall be rented and occupied.
B. 
The owner shall provide the Rent Board with all documentation necessary to support the application, including but not limited to code violation reports, engineering or inspection reports, copies of advertisements, etc.
C. 
Any extension granted by the Rent Board shall specify the date by which the dwelling unit must be rented and occupied. Additional extensions may be sought by the owner, but the total extension permitted in the aggregate shall not extend beyond six months from the date the previous tenancy ended.
D. 
The following circumstances shall constitute grounds for the granting of an extension pursuant to § 324-45A above by the Rent Leveling Board:
(1) 
An owner wishes to reserve a vacant dwelling unit for a family member. The owner shall provide in the time extension application full documentation including the name of the future tenant, the family relationship and the date of occupancy.
(2) 
An owner desires to maintain a dwelling unit vacant in order to improve the conditions of said dwelling unit. The owner shall provide full documentation in the application, including up-to-date building and housing inspection reports, improvement plans, all related required permits and the date by which the unit shall be rented and occupied.
(3) 
An owner maintains a vacant dwelling unit in order to correct code violations in said unit. The owner shall provide in the application full documentation such as code violation reports, correction plans, permits and the date by which the dwelling unit shall be rented and occupied.
E. 
Extension of the time period provided in § 324-44 of this article beyond the maximum time prescribed by § 324-45D above shall be only granted upon a clear and convincing showing by the owner that a good faith effort has been made to rent the dwelling unit at the legal rent, and that no tenant can be found. In this circumstance, the maximum extension granted beyond the maximum time provided in § 324-45D above shall be 60 days, renewable upon a new showing by the owner.
A. 
If a unit is not rented within 90 days, the recording agency will notify the Building Department, Health Department and Fire Department. The above Departments shall send inspectors to the building to inspect the entire building and the unrented unit in particular to assure compliance with all applicable codes. If violations are found or if a dangerous or unsafe condition exists, proper measures are to be taken.
B. 
The above Departments will continue to inspect both the building and the individual unrented unit on a regular basis. The building and unrented unit shall be inspected at least once every 10 business days until the unit is rented and occupied.
The Municipal Court shall process all code violations on these buildings and units on an expedited basis.
[Amended 5-23-2002 by Ord. No. 2002-20; 3-23-2006 by Ord. No. 2006-16]
Violation of any part of this Article VIII by an owner shall be punishable by a fine of not less than $500 nor more than $2,000. Each day during which an owner is in violation of § 324-44 hereof shall constitute a separate violation of this article.
A. 
This article is intended and shall be construed to avoid any conflict with state law in particular but not limited to state statutes regulating the conversion of rental units into other forms of ownership.
B. 
If any provision of this article is declared invalid, such invalidity shall not affect other provisions of this article which can be given effect, and to this end, the provisions of this article are declared to be severable.