[EVG file photo]
There is new ownership at 629 E. Fifth St., a building on the north side of the cul-de-sac between Avenue B and Avenue C.
And the new landlord's property manager, Jordan Cooper and Associates, has notified the tenants in the 24-unit building that they will need to move out at the end of their lease, but preferably sooner.
One current resident shared the letter from Cooper and Associates ...
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The letter reads in part:
We hope you had a nice holiday season. As we begin the New Year, the new owners wish to communicate their business plan and how it will affect you as current tenants with as much clarity and transparency as possible.
Ownership’s goal is to improve the building’s infrastructure common areas, basement, and to renovate each unit in the building.
Therefore we do not plan to renew or extend any leases at expiration.
Instead of a standard 30 day notice of non-renewal, ownership wants to provide as much time as possible for each tenant to seek new housing.
We are not terminating anyone’s lease. You are absolutely welcome to stay until the end of your current lease term (if you need information on when your lease expires please email or call the office). In order to expedite the construction process, ownership is offering incentives to anyone willing to move out on or around February 28th, 2017.
We are keenly aware that moving is not easy. We would be happy to have any qualifying tenants back in the building as soon as units are complete (generally 4 months after renovation begins). Ownership feels that providing open, honest communication is the appropriate way to handle our relationship.
As the current resident said: "It's causing a lot of people to be displaced into an unrealistic rental market and creating more unaffordable housing in the East Village."
The building arrived on the market in April 2014. The asking price was $12.5 million. Per the listing at the time:
There are 24 residential units, all of which are Free Market. Of the 24 apartments, 13 are month-to-month, 6 expire at the end of April, 3 are currently vacant and 2 expire between May and July. The rents are performing at less than 75% of market and considering the building is fully deregulated, an investor could quickly bring the units up to market rents as the leases expire. Therefore, a gross annual income of around $930,000 could be achieved in a relatively short period.
Public records from November show that the building sold for $16.2 million. The LLC listed as the owner matches up to the address of Morgenstern Capital, run by Robert Morgenstern, co-founder of Stone Street Capital. The Luthien Group was the seller.