How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask CalAttorney2 Your Own Question
CalAttorney2, Lawyer
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 10215
Experience:  I am a civil litigation attorney with experience representing HOAs, homeowners, businesses and others in real estate matters.
Type Your Real Estate Law Question Here...
CalAttorney2 is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I live in Nassau County, New York. I rent 1/2 of a 2 family

Customer Question

I live in Nassau County, New York. I rent 1/2 of a 2 family home. If the owner wants to place the house for sale do they have an obligation to inform the tenants (the home is not owner occupied) that the home will be placed on the market? If so, how much notice is required?
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 6 months ago.

The landlord does not have an obligation to inform the tenants that the house is on the market.

The landlord does have a right of entry (this includes the right to show the property to prospective buyers) - this right of entry cannot be abused, so if the right of entry is excessively used the tenant can sue the landlord for a violation of the "implied right of quiet enjoyment."

If the property is sold, the tenant's lease will continue with the same terms and conditions to the new owner. The seller must transfer the security deposit to the buyer, and the buyer must notify the tenants as to where the rent must be paid, but all other terms and conditions will remain in effect just as they were before.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
How does the landlord determine "right of entry"? The home currently has 2 tenants in 2 separate units. If the home is going to be available for viewing by prospective buyers, how would that be arranged? Do potential buyers have unlimited access to both units or does this need to be arranged prior?
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 6 months ago.

New York does not have an express statute governing the landlord's right of entry, but the landlord generally must provide 24 hours written notice (for non-emergency entry).

Regarding "excessive" entry, this is usually based on the actual conduct (so if you have an agent that is simply bringing in people at random times and without any notice whatsoever, this is likely to be found to be an abuse of the right of quiet enjoyment, but you need to give your landlord written notice of the violation first, then sue after if the behavior does not stop).

The access should not be "unlimited" and potential buyers should all be escorted by real estate agents.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Im the property manager of this property (I also live in one of the units) I have a lease that ends in June of '17 so this conversation is more about my tenant then myself. That said, how do we allow agents access to both units? Do they have access anytime, so long as they ask? I have a kid that is home alone for an hour a day (can they demand access while he's home alone) I have 2 dogs, do I lock them up just in case access is needed. If I allow access to my unit does the tenant upstairs also have to grant access?
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 6 months ago.

The landlord should have placed his real estate agent into contact with you as his manager.

The realtor will then set up a viewing arrangement, so that both open houses and scheduled showings can occur. You should receive at least 24 hours notice prior to these (this is in everyone's best interest, as the realtor will want the property to look good, as opposed to doing a showing while the tenant's have laundry and dishes set out (normal living, but certainly not better homes and gardens).

Most realtors will work to accommodate schedule issues such as unaccompanied minors without any issue (as long as you are not blocking out significant portions of the day/week that they cannot show the unit).

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
In short, both units need to be shown at will, so long as 24 hour notice is given? And said showings could begin today because no prior notice to the tenants is required by the landlord?
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 6 months ago.

Sort of. As I noted, there is no statutory requirement, but the landlord is expected to give 24 hours notice for this type of entry.

Failure to give 24 hours notice is a good basis for a "violation of the right of quiet enjoyment" suit.

But if you were given 24 hours notice tomorrow morning, the landlord could legitimately show both units the following day.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Understood. For example, the landlord wants to show the home at 3pm on Friday....My child gets home from school at 3pm and hes alone until 3:45. Legally I need to allow access to my "home" while my 13yr old child is in the home alone. Somehow I don't feel comfortable with that. Obviously Im playing devils advocate, but Im sure you see where Im going with this.
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 6 months ago.

I do, but again, if you contact the realtor in advance, you can generally avoid this issue altogether (these are people, and they are willing to work with you in most circumstances).

(Most residential property showings are on the weekends in any event).

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Im talking legal, not moral. Legally am I required to allow unlimited access?
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 6 months ago.

Yes. The landlord (or his agent) can give you 24 hours notice and is entitled to entry.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
if my dogs are not appropriately caged and my child is alone, it's fair game? In a liberal state like NY, i find this very hard to believe.
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 6 months ago.

The idea is that you have 24 hours to make the necessary arrangements to permit access to the unit.

The landlord has a right of entry (this includes a right of entry to show the unit to potential buyers or new tenants).

(I understand it is not ideal, and I truly do sympathize with the disruption to your living space, but the legal issues are pretty clear).

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
Understood. Thank you for your help, it's appreciated.
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 6 months ago.

You are welcome, and I do wish you the best with this matter.

Thank you for using our forum, and please do not forget to rate my service so that I can receive credit for assisting you.

If you would like to direct future questions to me specifically, you can do so by starting your new question with "For William B. Esq." and a moderator will notify me.

Thank you again, and again I wish you the best.


Related Real Estate Law Questions