An Update from the Unsdorf Renter’s Union


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As the Winter progresses, the Vaad would like to provide the community with an update as to what we have, ב”ה, accomplished thus far.

Last month, the Vaadim of Romema, Sanhedria Murchevet and Unsdorf, held a joint meeting at the home of Rosh Yeshivas Mir, Harav Nosson Tzvi Finkel Shli”ta. Following the meeting, the Vaadim discussed methods of how to work together to ensure success in all of the areas populated by Bnei Torah. These cooperative efforts have furthered the achievements of our Vaad.

We would again like to remind you of the specific goals of the Vaad.
1. To prevent any further extreme rise in prices (i.e. a Market Cap).
2. To ensure that all rental agreements with new tenants are at a reasonable price.
3. To reduce, unjustifiably inflated prices for new tenants.

A crucial component of our campaign is your active lookout and participation. By continuing to alert our hotline of vacant apartments, proposed increases, and possible violations you will enable and further the success of the Vaad, bringing relief to the residents of our שכונה.

The Vaad will not force current tenants out of their apartments. Our objective is to enable you to continue living in the area at a fair price. Please let us know how we can help you.
The Vaad effort is one for the people by the people, and by working together we will bring stability to the local community.

For updated information, to hear current blacklists, or to find out how you can play a role in these efforts, please call the Hotline at (02) 537-4547.

ועד לעניני שכירות אונסדרף

What your Vaad has ב”ה accomplished to date!

• Over 50 new rental agreements have been regulated under the Vaad auspices in the past three months.

• Previous blacklists have proven successful in discouraging landlords from further hikes.

• 195 families are now official members of our strong and unified Renter’s Union.

• Since the Vaad’s inception, over $150,000 has been saved by local renters.

• Both Real Estate Agents and Baalei Dira now work hand in hand with the Vaad ensuring fair and reasonable rental agreements.

• The Vaad Computer Software, created exclusively by the Unsdorf Vaad, is now being used by three local Vaadim, in a joint and cooperative effort. 

• Following the lead of the Unsdorf Vaad, similar Vaadim were established in the surrounding areas including Belz, Ezras Torah, Ramat Eshkol and Tel Arza. Our methods and systematic approach have served as an example to the local Vaadim.

Current Vaad Blacklist:

Sorotzkin  16 Apt. 4A

Sorotzkin 19 Apt. 8

Sorotzkin 43 Apt. 8

Sorotzkin 53 Apt. 4


  1. This is a short term solution. Landlords who cannot cover their rising expenses will either abandon the buildings (as happened in NY under rent control) or builders will stop investing and building in neighborhoods where they cannot recover their costs.

  2. The situation in Yerushalayim is different than NY because nobody owns a whole building. Individual owners own one or maybe a couple of isolated apartments. There is no one “Landlord” who will abandon his “buildings” and any owner who wants to sell will have plenty of people whom will be glad to take it off his hands and actually live there. Also there are no new building projects in the areas that the Vaadim oversee because there is no space to build exept up. That is currently not allowed in most of these areas because of government regulations.

  3. This article conveniently forgets to mention to gigantic machlokes caused by the vaad in Ramat Eshkol – and the resulting failure of the vaad there.

  4. Bullies! Who exactly to these guys think they are? (I am not talking about Rav Nosson Tzvi shlita, it does’nt say he endorses this idea, just that it was held in his house, was even there?) Why is rent in manhatten 150% higher than in Brooklyn? Its called demand for location, If these guys cant afford or don’t like the prices that are being asked for on Rechov Sorotzkin or anywhere else for that matter, move to Kiryat Sefer, Beitar… where rent is half that price. Oh but we dont WANT to travel back and forth to learn in the yeshivos that we WANT to learn in… those are the conveniences that you pay for.

  5. ROCKET ON ROIDS: in essence I agree with you, however, can you possibly envision a scenario where rental inreases are just too much, or do you say it must be 100% market forces that determine a price? For example, an apt that goes for $800, then 6 monthss later (many couples stay for just 6 months) the landlord raises to 1000, then 6 months later to 1200 etc. To say – “well if someone is rich enough to pay it, then that’s a fair price” is to ignore that THE TORAH has halachos about fair pricing and gouging and we, as Torah Jews, don’t JUST determine the price based on market demands. The Torah does not allow gouging. And increasing the rents as described above likely falls under that category.

  6. The Vaadim held a meeting in the house of Yeshiva R’Nosson Tzvi Finkel Shlit”a. Well what did he say??? Why did they discuss their methods only after they left?

  7. I am not one to question rabbonim. However, I was always under the belief that capitalism and a free market economy are not contradictory to Torah as long as the proper halachos re: money and business practice are followed. What we have here, unfortunately, is pure, unadulterated socialism. Now, I understand the predicament that native Yerushalmi famiies are now facing, in which people who have literally lived for generations in the same neighborhoods are being driven out by young couples from English-speaking countries with far greater financial clout than the natives. And I understand that these native families don’t want to just pack up and move to some development town in the Negev, where the prices are much moere affordable. However, what is going on right now in Yerushalayim with skyrocketing prices is a classic case of economic growth in a free market economy. The law of supply and demand rules in capitalism. I know it sounds unfair, but it’s not. Would you rather have Israel’s economy, of which the most Hasidish of Hasidish neighborhoods in Yerushalayim is a part, be like that of Cuba or North Korea? I think not. Take for example Manhattan. With so many people the world over clamoring to live there, do you think that the prices would be the same as those in North Dakota? The same goes for Yerushalayim. The tide of economic growth is not something that can be halted by rent control boards. Sorry, but Yerushalayim is not Havana. And thank G-d for that.

  8. This discussion is getting old already. The vaadim work, they have the approval and backing of the gedolim…and the same 2 greedy landlords who speak English think that if they post 10 false comments on Yeshiva World, they will change something.

  9. The funny thing with the Unsdorf vaad is that they overlook the main point of the entire vaad. While many poskim claim that a rent control vaad is against halacha ccording to the Posek that was behind the process (anyone involved should know who I mean) this was true only if the goal of the vaad was monetary. Since he claimed that the vaad was established to save a community he said it was mutar. He went on to say that he too agrees that a vaad with the sole purpose of saving money is assur as it is breaking free market principals. Therefore I find it rather ironic that the Unsdorf vaad makes no mention of saving their community (perhaps because they have no identfiable community?) only money!
    In this regard the poskim seem to be unanimous that is assur!
    I have heard this said excplicitly concerning Ramat Eshkol where the disastrous results of the vaad have included major machlokes in the community ( the opposite of the only halachik heter for such a vaad), the head of the vaad being verbally abused and threatened with his life by angry landlords, and little overall progress. All because some people simply do not understand the dyanmics of the real world and when stepping out of the beis medrash for five minutes they assume that every baal dira will respect them because they learn all day and will therefore give in to their demands.
    Can everyone just grow up and live with some seichal?

  10. #5-Took the words out of my mouth! I’m waiting to see a hand written letter from R’Noson Tzvi Shlita that he actually endorses the idea. In fact, I do know that Rav Elyashiv Shlita is very strong against this regime!

  11. I live here in Ezras Torah and I also have a rental. I can tell you what is going on. I for one take a decent amount and it was approved for by the Vaad. however, the situation is terrible when a landlord that owns a couple of apartments in one building jumps from $1300.00 a month to $2250 because there are people that will pay it- I’m serious- No exaggeration here- you can check it out. So now five nice families that have been living there for years get put on the streets! I know others that got raised $800 in one shot!! Now this calls for the intervention of the Gedolim!
    They do take all reasonable things into account when making a price. There is no general price list.
    Let me tell you- I’ve met the people on the Vaad and they’re doing this Lshem Shamayim!!
    I would call the Landlords that go on outrageous hikes the Mafia instead!

  12. I don’t know very much of what’s behind the vaadim. What I do know is that Rabbanim are behind it. I don’t know if R’ Nasson Tzvi is or is not, but granted, people greater than any of you are doing this. So instead of blasting something when you don’t know everything behind it, either find out about it or keep the negativity to yourselves.

  13. I don’t know very much about the vaadim. What I do know is that Rabbanim are behind it. Whether R’ Nosson Tzvi is behind it or not, is not an issue. Whoever is doing it, is greater than any of you.
    Since most of you probably don’t know everything that the Rabbanim have taken into account, you should do one of two things, either find out about it, or keep your negativity to yourselves.

    I never wrote before and I don’t plan on writing again, but while I’m here, I’ll put in my twosense. DON’T THINK THAT EVERYTHING WRITTEN ON YESHIVAWORLD NEEDS ANYONE’S NEGATIVE COMMENTS!

  14. Why don’t all of the cynics out there move to those neighborhoods and then judge.

    ” The ignorant tend to judge others in search of their own intellect, when they fail to find their own, they question that of another man.

    Know and then Judge!!!!!!!!

  15. Aside from #18 I have to agree with #5. I know landlords in the neighborhods mentioned; Israelis that live there with a rooms to rent. Coming from davening in an Agudah NY I happened to like the atmosphere of American Yeshiva bochrim moving in. BUT, the stories i have heard of how young yeshiva couples have stolen property and taken it when they moved, destroyed property in apartments, thrown out landlords porperty and then claimed that their rosh yeshiva said it was OK because of x or y makes me very uncomfortable. Are the yehsiva’s rasing a bucnh of hoods? I know it looks that way if you go to a yeshiva wedding in jerusalem these days with all the bochrim smoking and drinking and talking loudly but i though that on a day to day basis there were ehtics being taught in yeshivos. limud lehavee l’ maaseh.

  16. Since Rav Finkel Shlita is behind this, who are we to attack what the Gedolim deem appropiate?

    If you know of another Godol opposed to it, provide that verifiable information rather than attacking the initiative of the Gedolei Yisroel Shlita.

  17. R’ ELYASHIV IS VERY MUCH AGAINST THE VAAD. According to him, they have no halachic authority to impose sanctions against those who dont abide by their rules, nor do they have the power to declare a contract invalid if the price is above what they allow (which is what they have been doing).
    The word is R’ Nosson Tzvi Shlita asked that his name be removed from any sign endorsing the vaad.

  18. Thank you Riski for your closing comment. Hopefully people can learn to live more b’simcha and look at things positively. Everything can be looked at both ways for good or bad.

  19. #19 – The failure of the Ramat Eshkol vaad is evident to anyone in the know. The heads of the vaad have received physical threats. They’ve had their front doors spray painted “DEATH TO THE VAAD” in red. Innocent renters have been targetted and harassed.
    One morning last week signs appeared rom the vaad blacklisting their first apartment! The apartment is owned by a kollel amily that has lied in Ramat Eshkol longer since before the heads of the vaad were even dating.
    In any event – the blacklisted apartment was rented by that evening!

  20. Who are you people? The letters signed by DOZENS of rabbonim have been posted here for all to see. The truth is that it is NOT merely the landlords who are to blame, nor are the tenants even blaming them for what has happened. Much more at fault are those young couples who intend only to come for a year or two who without any conscience convince their wealthy parents, who would be spending $1500 a month in Flatbush, to spend that much here on something that two years ago was half that.
    People in Lakewood and New York who see these comments, please take some responsibilty and use your sechel before giving your wonderful new aidims and tochters blank checks. You have, albeit unwittingly, helped destroy the character of our neighborhoods, created terrible animosity between Americans and Israelis, and forced emesdik bnei torah to live further and further away from their yeshivos.

    Oh, but there are many new restaurants being supported by all the gelt, so I guess it can’t be all that bad.

  21. #18, ayiddishemamme,

    My apartment in NYC went in two years from $3000 a month to just under $5000 per month. The percentage increase in rent is similar to your own. That comes to near $60,000 a year just for one aparment!!! About $100,000 for most in pre-tax income. For one year.

    We pay for this by having a number single guys split the rent. I plan on moving out when the lease is up even though overall I probably have the best deal in the apartment.

    I think these rents are insane. I hope they don’t last. And I plan on moving out sooner or later to get a lower price elsewhere. But I can’t deny that the landlords are making the building nicer and are getting people to pay the rents. And they own it. Not me.

    I don’t know the Israeli market. You mention that you’d be out on the street. Is there really no place in Israel with rent that’s cheap enough that you can afford? Will you or these other five families really be homeless? Or will you instead merely have the inconvenience of moving?

    If you want to lock in your prices here in NYC, the only way is to buy (with a locked-in mortgage). Even then taxes could rise or fall.

    To me it seems that the renters are accusing the landlords of price gouging. But I thought price gouging was when you raised prices due to short-term shortages of basic needs. Like water bottles right after a hurricane makes the drinking water supply unsafe.

    Here they are setting prices based on long-term trends. And if they are wrong they’d lower the price. And there are alternatives for you: you can live somewhere else. How is that gouging and not the market? I guess I am trying to understand how its unfair and not just inconvenient.

  22. #12 you have your facts wrong. The Israelis, at least in Ramat Eshkol, are happily moving out in droves to adjoining neighborhoods (read government built slums in Eretz Chafetz/Shmuel Hanavi area) In order to pay $600 and charge $1200 for their apts in Ramat Eshkol. Rav Lupoliansky’s son-in-law did it and so did Rav Efrati’s. Also there are some AMERICAN yungeleit that have long-term leases in Ramat Eshkol for $5-600 and sub-let for $1000 or more without the knowledge of the Bal Dira (although quite capitalist, not so Pushut in Halacha CH”M 312-316).

  23. Dear בני השכונה ,

    As we come to a close on our first month of operation, the Vaad would like to express its appreciation to the neighborhood for its ongoing support. Our entire success is due to your participation.

    The Vaad is working closely with neighborhood real-estate agents to ensure fair pricing. Not only renters, but many בעלי דירה themselves have approached the Vaad to have their apartments assessed. B “H to date the Vaad has processed 22 apartments satisfactorily (with several more in the works). This includes limiting rent increases and new contract prices and in general assisting in the renter/landlord dialogue.

    We look forward to much continued success and would like to remind the ציבור to always contact the Vaad on any new contract or contract renewal. Please make your friends aware of this as well. Your continued support will help ensure the hatzlocha of this vital service.

  24. Kol Hakavod to the people in Eretz Yisroel of which it is said Avir D’Yisroel Machkim. If only some of us in Boro Park would join and stop buying real estate at abnormal price for 3 months, we would see some results. The same with rentals over here, if the youngsters some of whom are imature 50 year olds wouldn’t offer more for apartments because Chas V’Shalom their spoiled child may live in a basement for a while we would see rents drop. We are Boro Park homeowners who charge between $800 and $1,000 a month for what others charge $1,500 plus heat. We were told by neighbors that we are undercutting the block. Well too bad. We don’t want people to have to lie to get additional services to be able to pay rent so that someone can buy another piece of jewelry, another fur coat and must drive the latest model cars. We have children in Yerushalayim living in rentals for under $1,000. No, they don’t sublet behind the landlords back. One of them has to move now and twice backed out of an almost rental because they are working with the Vaad. No it’s not the way some of you are bashing. Some of you are just plain jealous when you see what a life of Kedusha the couples live in Eretz Yisroel, event the ones that live on a bit of an upscale life. Yes, we should continue encouraging and supporting them, not talking back- remember what happened to the Meraglim!