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This forum contains 28 topics and 140 replies, and was last updated by  therefuser 1 month, 1 week ago.

Brownstoner July 31, 2013 at 10:53 am

We've Updated Our Spam Protection

Our tech team has made some pretty big updates to combat spam in the Forum.

*One is a plugin that should filter out most of the attempts by spammers to register in the first place.

*Two, Forum users now have the ability to mark spam when they see it. If enough users mark a post as spam, it will automatically disappear.

Very sorry for all the spam lately. We hope this puts a lid on it.

Utilities May 15, 2014 at 5:38 pm

Con Ed being a$$holes ….but we are persevering

I thought the Brownstoner family might like an update on my co-ops small claims court case against Con Edison for flooding our basement on the 8th of February 2013.

Please see here first if not familiar


and then


OK so the scoop is this….I got screwed three times……the first time by ConEd flooding the basement on 8th of Feb 2013, the second time when their lawyer turned up and lied to the court saying he needed a continuance on December 5th 2013 saying “he just got the case” even though I had emails back and forth for 4 months. Now I’ve been screwed for a 3rd time.

So I turned up to court on Thursday the 8th of May all ready to go, the judge said ok give me the short version, I told him what happened in 60 secs or less, he turned to Coned’s lawyer and said ok your position….. Ron Vales the lawyer from CON Ed who has been involved in this case since July 2013 said….your honor we ask that this case be dismissed because the summons to Con Ed is in the name of “Dean Collins 135 Henry St Brooklyn” and as far as we can tell the property damaged belongs to 135 Henry Owners Corp so this plaintiff has no legal standing to sue us.

…….f4ck me……

Basically the judge asked the details and I said I explained how all of the emails from me, the invoices we provided are all in the name of the co-op and I’ve been representing the co-op as its president and the current president (I’m now treasurer) was here in the court as well, and that we have always said we were seeking repayment for the money expended by the co-op to plumbers from the co-ops bank account be repaid.

He said sorry …..dismissed……but then Judge Cohen said to con edisons lawyer……I suggest you step outside and sort this out because this case will probably come before me again and pre judgment statutory interest will be accruing (9% pa for those who don’t know).

Anyway when we stepped outside Ronald Vales ignored the judge and said look we don’t believe we are responsible, we’ve offered you 50% I suggest you take it.

I said the co-op met and voted at our agm and rejected it as it wasn’t our fault

H asked that we give him a few days to see what he can do and to wait until Wednesday, Wednesday came and went….. with no phone call, I called him today he said nope sorry you will need to refile.

So we did….. 135 Henry Owners Corp Vs Con Edison round 4 on Wednesday October 29th at 9.30.

Lets see if I can get screwed for a 4th time.

Utilities November 5, 2013 at 8:46 am

Frontage or Water Meter?

My building is a two-family, with three to four adults living in it at any one time; there is a washer-dryer unit and a dishwasher that is rarely used. I just received the frontage bill, it was $1612 for a year – should I stick with this, or switch to a meter? Thank you!

Utilities August 20, 2013 at 1:03 pm

TWC wants to compromise–use of my building for free internet/cable

A year and a half ago (really) I contacted Time Warner to remove a large cable that runs alongside my building. They finally called me back and sent someone from Surveys to see if the cable could be reconfigured. Turns out it would be problematic so they offered to “compensate” me for the use of my building. Now I have a an offer of free service for 3 cable boxes and also free internet usage until the time they wish to terminate. In return, I have to be available for appointments any time from 8 – 6, Monday through Saturday and allow access to my property to fix problems etc. This would not be so bad except my neighbor has the cable pole in his yard and they can easily can get access from my yard. I am picturing them ringing my bell with increased frequency (I used to refuse). Is this just not worthwhile? I want to add a clause that I can terminate the contract at any time as well, and b able to re-submit my request to have the cable removed.

Utilities June 27, 2013 at 5:45 pm

Water meter conversion

I have a three family house in Brooklyn. There are five adults living in the building, the annual frontage bill totals around $4,000. This seems rather high. Should I consider conversion to meter and if so can you recommend a plumber who can do this.

Utilities June 24, 2013 at 2:26 pm

Electric Meters

So, I’m finally finishing up on a 2 family renovation and now that I’m getting ready for the tenants to move in I realize that there are only 2 meters, one for each apartment. Since the home was owner occupied for 40 years before I bought it, this was fine for them. What about boiler ignition, washer, gas dryer and basement lights? LIPA told me they can’t install a third meter for just those things. Do I take some money off the rent? Like how much? I think i only have 2 meters in my primary residence also, but it doesn’t matter because I live here.

Utilities March 1, 2013 at 5:48 pm

Electricity bills rise after Con Ed installs new meter?

After having relatively stable electricity costs for 6 years, this past year our electricity bills have risen 50%. About a year ago, Con Ed switched the meters on our home to new ones that can be read remotely…. so, with the new meters, we have much higher costs. Con Ed says they have no idea what’s causing the increase in costs but that “maybe the old meter” wasn’t accurate.
Has anyone else had this problem — or do you know of some independent means of testing a meter? (not counting just taking Con Ed’s word for it)

Utilities February 25, 2013 at 1:20 pm

Water and Sewer Line Protection Program — scam or legit?

Hi All,
Just got a letter from the NYC Department of Environmental Protection exhorting me to begin a protection plan with 3rd party vendor (American Water Resources).  The letter began this way:  “Many New York City homeowners are not aware that repairs to the water and sewer lines that run from their home’s exterior to the mains in the street are their responsibility” [no, I definitely wasn't aware of that!!].   The letter goes onto say that aging pipes, tree roots, etc., can cause a break in water or sewer lines and then says, “typical water line repairs cost New York City homeowners between $3,000 and $5,000 while an average sewer line replacement costs between $10,000 and $15,000.”
The protection program for water & sewer lines costs $12 a month.   Anyone have experience or thoughts?   Is this on the up & up?

Utilities February 2, 2013 at 7:26 pm

Upgrading electric service

Looking for information on upgrading a single family house in Brooklyn from 100 amps with meter inside to 150 amps or 200 amps. Wondering how much time this project would take with Con Ed involved.

Utilities November 12, 2012 at 1:52 pm

Crown Heights recommendation on cable / internet / satellite

My fiancee and I are making the move to our new house this Wednesday! Wish us luck.
One thing we’re going to need is cable and internet, or the satellite eqivalent. Thankfully, we’ll be able to say goodbye to Time Warner, as they don’t cover the area (on Dean Street in Crown Heights). So we’re looking at other options. Verizon FiOS is out, too. I haven’t finished checking coverage from other cable companies yet, but I’m wondering what sugguestions this community may have. Direct TV is looking pretty good right about now…

Utilities September 11, 2012 at 12:46 pm

Unwarranted Water Bill Charges: Sometimes Crossing Your Fingers Isn’t Enough

Disputing unwarranted water bill charges is an uphill battle. It takes more than having the facts on your side to win. We’ve helped hundreds of New Yorkers through the process, and we’ve accumulated a lot of tips to save homeowners and businesses time and money.

To put those lessons to work for more New Yorkers, the Public Advocate’s office has teamed up with elected officials from across the City to produce a new guide for homeowners and business owners.

> Download the Public Advocate’s guide here (http://pubadvocate.nyc.gov/water-bills)

Last month, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio held an oversight hearing to investigate cases of unexplained increases in water bills that were reported to our office. The stories that we heard from New Yorkers were deeply troubling (video here http://advocate.nyc.gov/hearing). Water bills can result in to a lien being placed on homeowner’s property and can threaten to shut-down a small business.

If you have problems with your water bill, contact our hotline at 212.669.7250 or email us at gethelp@pubadvocate.nyc.gov. Filing a water bill dispute with the Department of Environmental protection can be confusing and time-intensive – but we can help.

I encourage you to share our Water Bill guide with your neighbors, co-op, or condo board. If you’d like to received hard copies to distribute, just send us an email at gethelp@pubadvocate.nyc.gov.

Utilities August 28, 2012 at 9:55 am

whole house water filter

we’re considering installing a whole house water filter to deal with some of the chlorine (and other stuff in the water). my wife and i have been living with dry skin, etc but we have a baby on the way so looking for a better solution than installing shower head filters. does anyone have a system in their home? we looked at kinetico which seems good but expensive ($3k+!) and a few others in the higher price range ($1k+ – pelican, aquasana) but we’re wondering if something cheaper may work just as well. appreciate any thoughts!

Utilities July 6, 2012 at 9:43 pm

Fire Hydrant

Because of the heat wave, our street’s fire hydrant has been on continuously. Because of its continuous use, will this affect the water bill for homeowners on the block?

Utilities May 21, 2012 at 11:48 am

Brooklyn Utilities needed for a new residence

Hi everyone,  
Thanks for all the help on my previous question (which areas in Brooklyn….) – but now I have more questions!!!!
We have signed a lease for a duplex in Brooklyn (specifically Bed-Stuy / Kings County) and the landlord said that we need to setup services for power and cooking gas – ConEd and National Grid was specified: are they the correct providers for that area?  
And do I need to setup an account for trash services?  And if so – who do I need to contact?

Utilities April 25, 2012 at 7:08 pm

Energy Providers

Lately we have been harassed by a variety of utility companies by phone, mail and in person  promising immense savings from our Coned and Nationalgrid bills. I just spent a half our on http://www.poweryourway.com sorting through a myriad of different companies and offers to see if any of them do in fact provide better prices and reliable service. You guessed – no conclusions. Any actionable intelligence would be highly appreciated. Thanks.

Utilities March 11, 2012 at 6:38 pm

a good hvac guy?

Need a hvac guy to install central ac in my office. Anyone recommend a good one? Thanks!

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