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The super of my building brought me air-conditioner brackets, and told me I have to install them if I'm putting in an A/C unit this summer, and that I have to pay for the installation myself. Is this really my responsibility, and can the building make me install the brackets?
Unless your lease states otherwise, the responsibility for installing your air-conditioner—and the brackets that hold it in place—lies squarely with you, our experts tell us.
According to New York City law, landlords have no legal obligation to provide you with air-conditioning, and as we've written previously, it's not standard for buildings to handle installation unless it's explicitly outlined in your lease.
As for the brackets, it's in your best interest to comply with the landlord's request and install them. The Department of Buildings' A/C guidelines require that a window unit be "installed securely" and that you "support the unit from underneath" with either brackets or mounting rails, so really, your building is trying to make sure you comply with the law. The installation process is fairly simple provided you have access to a drill, and if not, you can pay someone to install the brackets and your unit for around $200 (we've got options here).
It's an annoying expense, to be sure, but look on the bright side: Since your building provided them free of charge, you're saving the $30 to $50 you'd normally spend picking up brackets on your own. And on top of that, no one wants to be the careless person whose A/C topples out the window and onto the sidewalk because they couldn't be bothered to deal with brackets.
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