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Landlord Who Bilked Banks out of Millions of Dollars Sued for Harassment

An East Village landlord who was recently arrested for allegedly taking out millions of dollars in loans through fraudulent means is also facing a civil lawsuit filed by New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman. According to an article by Crains New York Business, it is alleged that the landlord illegally harassed tenants in the rent-regulated apartments he owned by attempting to have them evicted so he could charge higher rents.

Steven Croman, who owned 140 buildings in Manhattan, obtained $45 million in loans from New York Community Bank and Capital One Bank between 2012 and 2014 by exaggerating the amount of income his properties generated, according to Schneiderman. That allowed him to obtain favorable terms with the banks. In addition to these allegations, the Attorney General’s office claims that Croman racked up over $1 million in unpaid fines he amassed for construction and building code violations. The violations came when Croman instructed construction firms to perform work without a permit as a way to get the tenants to move out. The work also exposed the tenants to lead dust.

According to the lawsuit, Croman and his company 9300 Realty, would buy up apartment buildings with rent-regulated units, then buy out the tenants so he can increase the rents. Those who refused the buyouts were subject to lawsuits. He would also not deposit the tenants’ rent checks then claim they were behind in their rent. He hired a private investigator who — along with some of the 9300 Realty employees — allegedly used intimidation tactics on the tenants to get them to move out.

If you feel that your rights as a lawful tenant have been threatened or violated, contact Tanya Hobson-Williams, P.C. to learn about the protections available to you under New York State Law.

Top Ten Estate Reasons Real Estate Closings Get Adjourned

Tanya Hobson-Williams#10-     An executor or administrator gives a power of attorney to a third party. Fiduciaries cannot delegate their authority.

#9-       The Seller does not come to closing with certified funds for transfer taxes.  Most Title companies will not take a personal check for transfer taxes unless authorized prior to closing.

#8-       The Buyer unaware that the bank deducts closing costs from mortgage proceeds and fails to bring certified funds to make up the difference.

#7-       The Executor of a Will that was not probated arrives at closing without Letters Testamentary.

#6-       A Religious Corporation arrives at closing without a Supreme Court order authorizing the sale.

#5-       The Seller arrives at closing with a payoff letter showing legal fees due. Seller may be in default on mortgage and must be in compliance with Home Equity Theft Protection Act.

#4-       A child of the deceased owner who lives in the house arrives at closing to execute the deed without an Administrator or an Affidavit of Heirship.

#3-       A seller with a docketed judgment that was discharged in bankruptcy believes he can sell the property free of that judgment.

#2-       Only one Executor shows up to the closing when Letters Testamentary where issued to two executors.

The Number 1 Reason is: Will names a specific person to receive the property but the Executor attends the closing to execute the deed.


*Make sure your Estate Attorney and Real Estate Attorney are knowledgeable about the relationship between estate matters and the purchase and sale of property.  Contact Attorney Tanya Hobson-Williams at (718) 210-4744 for more information.