Out Of The Mailbag – To YW Editor (More On The “Rental Vaads”)


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yw logo5.jpgDear Yeshiva World,

While there has been much controversy and public dialogue surrounding what are known as the “Rental Vaads” currently operating in Eretz Yisroel certain important points have come to the surface that your readership may be interested in knowing.

It has been confirmed through sources close to Rav Elyashiv Shlita that the Posek Hador considers the methods by which the vaadim are currently operating, to be asur al pi halacha.

Additionally, Rav Nachum Eisenstein met with Rav Nosson Tzvi Finkel Shlita late last week and learned that the use of the Rosh Yeshiva’s name is “totally unauthorized”, and found that the Rosh Yeshiva was “upset to learn that his name was being used in endorsing the vaad” in Ramat Eshkol, among others. The Rosh Yeshiva asked that it be publicized that he does not want his name associated with the vaadim.

While Rav Nosson Tzvi may (or may not) have wished the vaad organizers success at the meeting at his home, he doesn’t want to be billed as an organizer, or the impetus behind the vaad and that he doesn’t want his name used for it’s promotion.

Please notify your readers to the above developments before kehillos are Chas Vesholom damaged by acting outside the wishes of the gedolim.

Sincerely, A concerned ben Torah.

Editors Note: Our reporting on the Ramat Eshkol rental vaad has brought a strong response from our readership. As is usually the case, YW does not “take sides”. On that note we would like to let our readership know that YW has now obtained the letters that stand behind the vaad and are pleased to be able to share them with you. Click HERE to view the various letters signed by various Rabbonim.

Any signed letters that YW receives from Rabbonim regarding this topic will be posted as soon as we receive them.

(A.R. and D.S. contributed to this report)


  1. Truth?

    Yeah. The truth is those letters that Yeshivaworld was kind enough to share with us.

    See all tose Rabbonim’s signatures? Are they not telling the truth here?

    Please. Be real.

  2. It’s about time someone big has come out against the awful tactics employed by these vaadim! This is a victory for the midos of klal yisroel. Thank you to Hagaon Haposek Hadore Rav Elyashiv Shli”ta!

  3. Can Yeshiva World make the Haskama letters larger so they can be read? Among some of the signatures I was able to make out are:
    Rav Tzvi Sharlin, The Gaavad, The Kopishnitzer Rebbe, Rachmostrivke Rebbe, Rav Zalman Nechemia Goldberg, Rav Chaim Pinchos Scheinberg, Rav Shmuel Auerbach, Rav Yisroel Ganz, Rav Yitzchok Berkowitz, Rav Elchonon Peretz, Rav Shamai Kehas Gross. There are many more signatures that I can not read.

    It seems that when Rav Yitzchok Berkowitz wrote in his letter “with the encouragement of the Rosh Yeshiva Shlita” (letter #8) he was referring to Rav Nosson Tzvi Finkel.
    Has the Yeshiva World confirmed that the article that was written by a “concerned ben torah” is true?

  4. Well, we want to buy a place in Yerushalayim & move. If a somebody doesn’t stabilize purchase prices we’ll be living in a 1 room ratty shack instead of a decent place in a decent neighborhood.

    So is the Vaad controlling purchases too? I don’t see how any of this is a problem unless the Vaad is manipulating (rental) prices for their own benefit. And can we have a translation of the letters?

  5. The Rabbis letters speak for themselves.

    It is irresponsible for a responsible individual to cast aspersions on them. A so-called ‘insider’ to Rav Elyashiv doesnt mean very much. When Maran shlit”a wishes to make his opinion public he is very much able to do so, wthout ‘scoops’ or ‘leaks’ on websites!!!

    On the other hand, letters SIGNED by leading rabbonim of every stripe have been published. The authors range from the Gaavad of the Eda HaCharedis, to the Belz Badatz to Rabbi Yaakov Chaim Sofer, of the sefardic Kaf Hahayim.

    This rumor isnt even worthy of publishing! Was it posted by ‘A Concerned Ben Torah’ or by “A concerned Landlord”?

  6. If you put limits on the rental prices but not on lanlords’expenses,services will deteriorate and tenants will suffer. If you limit the rents without lowering or limiting the costs to the owners,the buildings will be negleted Make a subsidy that lower income people could get and then afford the rent and the subsidizers will pay the extra costs to the landlordsThat is the kind of solution the rabbonim should address.

  7. Unfortunately there are a few “concerned” individuals who are more concerned about their wallets than the da’as Torah and the klal. These individuals mailed letters that seemed to be from the va’ad saying that certain families should be put into cheirem for not following the va’ad of Ramat Eshkol. I called the va’ad who confirmed that they had NOT sent those letters and that the letters were falsified by some individuals trying to undermine the va’ad.
    If people have no shame to mail false letters to the community, they probably have no shame to write false letters to the Yeshiva World either.

  8. A few questions should be asked on the so called “a concerned ben torah”
    1. where did he get his information that rav elyashiv paskened it’s assur (if you look through shut seforim you will find numerous teshuvas enacting and praising rent control)
    2. under what context is it asur
    3. where did he get his information about reb nachum eisenstein
    4. is he a real ben torah who is concerned or is he a landlord
    5. are the other numeros poskim cholek on rav elyashiv.

  9. Baloney. Says who? This is like 1000 other supposed things which are SUPPOSEDLY said by Rav Elyashiv. SHow it to us in writing! UNtil then, we DO have in writing the CHASIMOS of great Rabbis of all groups IN FAVOR of this method!!

  10. First of all – I doubt Yeshiva World would post a letter like this without verifying the claims it makes. (?)
    *Apparently Rav Elyashiv Shlita holds that a kehillah cannot eact these sort of takanos unless it does so unanimously – meaning even landlords. He also says that there is no “chochom” today who can enact these takanos without the unanimous community.

    In the end it will come out that the truly selfish parties involved in this were the vaadim themselves. Not landlords trying to make an honest buck. The heads of the vaad were ready to start machlokes, loshon hora, and intimidation just to stay in the fashionable communities they could no longer honestly afford.

    Thanks to the ben torah who wrote this letter, and Harav HaGaon R’ Elyashiv Shlita!

  11. i think its a very good thing anyways maybe they should do such a thing in america too where people are paying $2300 a month for rent i think its out of control and they should set up a vaad here too!

  12. This letter written has not the slightest substantiation whatsoever, whereas the Vaadim have a lot of substantiation from many highly-renowned Rabbonim. Why has this letter even made it to Yeshiva World’s newslines?

  13. To the people so quick to disparage the “concerned ben torah”. Why are you so quick to believe that R’ Elyashiv did NOT say this? Is it possible that you are a renter and therefore have a monetary bias towards not beliving? And if you are so quick to dismiss what R’ Elyashiv might have said, then are YOU a ben torah?

    And to those who say that being a landlord implies that one is not a “concerned ben torah”, I have nothing to say. I think that your lack of middos saying such a thing speaks for itself.

  14. Comment number 18 –
    It’s not enough to disparage the concerned ben torah that you have to go ahead and assume that yeshiva world publish unsubstantiated claims?

  15. To you who said

    Rent control always benefits everyone. So now this “va’ad” has had economic training?

    Comment by aploni1 — December 17, 2007 @ 3:16 pm

    Actually, its economics 101 that rent control benefits a very small group of people who get the rent controlled apartments. It hurts everyone else as the price of the remaining units goes up and there is little incentive to create more inventory. Look my parents have had a rent controlled apartment for 30 years and have benefited greatly from it but the truth is that in the end it hurts the community as a whole because who wants to own rental properties when they cant make money on the units. I know that I would never rent out my properties if I couldnt make some profit every month. DOnt forget there are many costs to maintain a property and if the landlord doesnt make the money to cover those the apartments will goto pot.

  16. SOrry, i see it now. I didnt realize that you could click on the words on top. I like the idea. they should do it in America too. A 2 bedroom apartment in BP goes for anything over 1400!!!!!!!!




  19. I’m just wondering, even if it’s true what Rav Elyashiv said, who told him what methods the vaads are using. Maybe it’s some of the people who are close to him who happen to own many diras in these areas. Everyone is nogaih badaver in one way or another. Rav Elyashiv always answers a question based on the way it is presented to him. How do we that they didn’t just ask him that if a vaad was to do such and such would it be assur. Maybe he didn’t even know what they were refferring to. Until you go and ask him yourself or until he publishes something himself, not just a letter with his signature on it (bacause there have been plenty of fakes of those in the past) how can you believe what people say in his name?
    Also go ask Rav Nosson Tzvi yourself what he holds. (It’s very easy he’s always available) I’m positive that it’s not what this letter implies. Many people spoke to him today and got a very different picture than the author of this letter is trying to portray.

  20. “Please notify your readers to the above developments before kehillos are Chas Vesholom damaged by acting outside the wishes of the gedolim”. — Those who understand the English Language know that when Rav Finkel asks that he not be called an organizer etc. DOES NOT mean he is not an advocate for the vaadim. When a Rav does not want to sign his name, this does NOT mean they are not in agreement rather there are other mitigating circumstances involved. If you are blessed with sechel you can readily understand.

  21. #20 Rabish and: I for one am a land lord and very much support the idea of rent control. just because I can raise the rent of my appartment by 25-35% in a year does not make it ehrlich.

    #8 proud kaj guy: the vaad puts a cap on the rent of each appartment individually. if I want to raise my rent I will have to improve the appartment I own and then the value will go up. as long as I am not willing to fix the boiler, scrape the mold off the walls and paint the appartment I have no right to demand a higher rent just because some young couples parents have given them an open cheque for the first 5 years of marraige.

  22. # 25 rabbish and
    how about 8 letters with signatures and not someone hiding behind an annonymous name which implies that all the rabbonim on the letters are not concerned bnei torah

  23. i am disgusted by the efforts of a few biased people to try so hard to bring down the vad. i live in minchas yitzchock so i have no negius. the amount of people it has stopped from getting ripped off is amazing and i think so called ben torah(obviosly not)and others like him should mix out. i would also appreciate if yw,mishpacha and others would stop trying not to take sides when to me it seems they are.its something the rabbonim should deal with quietly.

  24. #28 thabo: I, for one, am a renter and very much do NOT support the idea of rent control. Just because I can’t afford to pay the fair market rent for an appartment does not make it ehrlich.

  25. I went to the Rosh Yeshiva (Rav Nosson Tzvi) and he said that he does not address Shailos about appartments but that I should talk to Rav Shirlin and the Ramat Eshkol Vaad before signing there.
    Agav the Rosh Yeshiva has a son in Ramat Eshkol who keeps him informed of developments in the neighborhood.

  26. It has been confirmed through emissaries of the so called “concerned ben torah” that the “concerned ben torah” made the rumor up himself, additionaly it has been confirmed that the numeros rabonim that signed the haskomos beleive in the vaadim,
    please notify your readers about the above developments

    Update: it has been confirmed through rumors that the so called “concerned ben torah” is in fact a “concerned landlord” who must not have read all the daas torah regarding the vaadim

  27. Ok something just doesnt sound right here, “concerned ben torah” definitely has got something up his sleeve other than trying to do whats erlich and bothered by the fact that the godol hador said something and pple arent listening (which im SURE he totally made up)
    Why is he posting his letter on every single website that i have gone to in the past week, and hanging up signs anywhere that someone will see??!!!?!
    Obviously he owns an apartment here, probably a shabby 2 room apartment thats on the top floor with no elevator, disgusting OLD bathroom and kitchen, which the normal price would and SHOULD be no more than $650 in this neighborhood! Then the prices in the area went totally out of control and landlords were easily asking $1200 for such apartments and getting it because pple have no choice. Someone that is willing to settle in such a shack obviously is not some rich spoiled american from a wealthy home being supported comfortably. Someone that is giving up alot to come here to sit and learn and live simple as possible and he is forced to pay $1200!!!!
    Now that thank god the Vaad FINALLY jumped in and decided to help the pple here that are struggling, this “Concerned ben torah” Is frantic that they will come look at his dinky top floor apartment and obviously with one look the rent will go back down to what it was 2 yrs ago and he wont be able to continue ripping off the innocent REAL bnei torah living here!
    If he were renting an apartment here and he were in the shoes that hes putting others in he would be running around and posting letters on EVERY website from every Rav how important the vaad is!
    So “concerned ben torah” get a life! Who you fooling??? We know your ulterior motives, you selfish landlord!!

  28. let me get this straight,
    A few days ago you guys either ignored or applauded the Lakewood vote that has the town NOT regulating how safe rental properties are to be, but now allow a Vaad in Jerusalem not let landlords earn what the market will bear. Could it be that in Lakewood the landlords are Rabbi connected but in Jerusalem the landlords are not.
    Someone- anyone EXPLAINE


  29. As previously posted:

    “In a notification which was prominently plastered across the neighborhood before Shabbos, the Vaad announced that 10 Elkana Street, Apartment 17 is forbidden to be rented by members of the community. This follows a month of intense negotiations between Vaad representatives and the owner of the property. The owner insisted on an exorbitant price of $1,250 a month for the two bedroom apartment, while the Vaad’s professional assessors valued the apartment at less than $1,000.”

    Does anyone know if this apartment is still available? I would like to rent it at the landlord’s original asking price of $1,250.

  30. What a hilarious argument, full of sincere ‘altruistic’ opinions. All those looking to buy are wholly for it, while all those who are landlords are thoroughly against it. How’s that for objectivity?

    Is it so suprising that R’ Nosson Zvi doesn’t want to get involved?

    And by the way, I happen to know R’ Nochum Eisenstien meets with Rav Elyashiv numerous times every week, and is responsible for bringing many sha’alos from the public to him.

  31. TO the constant refrain that rent controlls mean that landlords will then stop putting money into the apartments, I ask you Yerushalayim renters: has your landlord EVER put money into an apartment? When the 60 year old appliances broke? When the gas line was leaking? Please. The guys who raise rent by $400 each year have never repaired or improved the apartments anyway. We once asked our landlord to fix something (this was 500 years ago when we paid *only* $750 for a one bedroom) and he said, most sincerely, “but then I won’t be getting the full $750!” Right buddy, there might be an expense or too. Noooo it’s ALL profit!
    It HAS to be against halacha to increase rents dramatically without improving/fixing them, it just HAS TO.

  32. Overdone subject, those who are in favor are in favor, those who are against are still against, – is it a machlakas leshem shamayim? please do not make me laugh.

  33. shame on you YW for even writing it .it is one thing that a person sends to you letters that he wants everybody to read but it is another thing that you YW should write it .i think you heating up this machlokos …if you would think they are not right you would not write it …so please YW stay on track and let this be worked out by rabbonim and not just low lives that think up every day where to make a dollar


  35. #37 and you will not be able to walk out of your appartment or down the street without people staring at you and whispering to themselves “that”s the guy who went against Da’as Torah” let alone make it through Davening in a shul in the neighborhood.