New York Landlord Says Tenants Turned 3-Bedroom Apartment into 10-Room Airbnb Hostel

'We know the laws very well, you'll not be able to evict us ever'
By Jack Phillips
Jack Phillips
Jack Phillips
Breaking News Reporter
Jack Phillips is a breaking news reporter at The Epoch Times based in New York.
December 10, 2015 Updated: December 10, 2015

The landlord of a building in Queens, New York, says that he rented out a three-bedroom apartment–the third floor of the building–to two people for $2,500 per month.

However, landlord Eddie Shiew soon got a call from a tenant on the first floor who said they heard construction on the third floor.

Shiew told PIX-11 television that he went to the building and found that the third floor was renovated without him knowing.

“I went in the next day and found they had turned a three-bedroom into a 10-bedroom apartment,” he said, describing the rooms as “narrow.”


A landlord was shocked when he found his tenants had transformed a 3-bedroom apartment into a 10-bedroom apartment in Elmhurst, New York. But it was what the tenants did next that was even more surprising.

Posted by Fox 13 News on Thursday, December 10, 2015


The laws are against us landlords. Scumbags like these are eviction experts who take advantage of the tenant laws. Prevention is the key but you never really know.

Posted by Miguel E Quintana on Thursday, December 10, 2015

A construction crew used sheetrock to divide each bedroom into three small ones, he said.

He found that the tenants, Burak Firik and Dogan Kimilli, were renting out the rooms on, a website for people looking for a cheap place to stay for a short period of time.

Two tourists told PIX-11 that they stayed in one of the rooms in Kimilli’s apartment for $35 a night.

Shiew brought in a crew and tore down the renovations and changed the locks on doors, and he demanded that Firik and Kimilli leave.

But the two took Shiew to court. “They went to court and got a court order against me, ” Shiew added. “They said I illegally locked them out.”

The judge said that Shiew needs to let the two back into the apartment and now, they’re using curtains as room dividers to rent the space out on Airbnb despite Shiew’s pleas.

Firik texted Shiew, “We know the laws very well, you’ll not be able to evict us ever.”

But Shiew’s attorney told PIX-11 that he expects the two to be thrown out in a few months.

According to Gothamist, Firik and Kimilli might have posted six or more listings in Queens after “Airbnb released anonymized data on their hosts last week.”

Meanwhile, Councilmember Helen Rosenthal said that Airbnb’s recent release is “a useless disclosure that will do nothing to curb illegal hotels and tenant harassment.”

Jack Phillips
Breaking News Reporter
Jack Phillips is a breaking news reporter at The Epoch Times based in New York.