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barristerinky
barristerinky, Attorney
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Satisfied Customers: 37855
Experience:  Attorney over 16 years, landlord 26 years
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I have a month to month lease with a landlord that ended up

Customer Question

I have a month to month lease with a landlord that ended up in foreclosure. We've had a good relationship until now. He's trying to do a short sale which I fully understand. I have agreed to allow showings 2 x a week for a 2 hour period each of those 2 days. He and his realtor are continuously asking me to show the home at different times. I have a home office and cannot accommodate any whim showing. I feel that as a tenant with a right to peaceful enjoyment that I am being generous in being here to accommodate showings 4 hours a week. The listing agent is frustrated and the landlord is giving me a hard time. I'm making plans to be out in 60-90 days which is what is on my lease). What are my rights? Do I have to show more frequently? I also have a senior dog that I'm not comfortable leaving here to have people come in house when I'm not here.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Landlord-Tenant
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

Dear Customer,

I am very sorry to learn of this situation.

Unfortunately, the landlord has a right of "reasonable entry" (which is not well defined) and this right includes the right to show the unit for prospective buyers.

While as a tenant, the intrusion twice a week for two hours seems incredibly generous, for an owner trying to sell the property under a foreclosure deadline, showing the property only twice a week is probably insufficient.

You can try negotiating something with the landlord - reduced rent, shortened notice so that you can vacate the unit more quickly, or some other concession from them.

But unfortunately I do not see this being a good claim for money damages should you try to sue the landlord for breach of contract (the 'implied warranty of quiet enjoyment'), and such a hearing would not occur until approximately the same time that you were vacating the unit in any event.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am not trying to get any money, I just want to work from 9-5 and have some down time on weekends without being obligated to have people in my space that I'm paying for. My right to peaceful enjoyment. He's still collecting rent and never told the courts that I was a tenant. Am I wrong that it's my right to peaceful enjoyment. If I'm hosting a BBQ over a holiday weekend and he asks me at 4:00 on Friday to show at 11:00am on Saturday when I've already set aside time on Sunday for potential showings, you're telling me I have to accommodate? I don't think so.
Expert:  CalAttorney2 replied 1 year ago.

Dear Customer,

I am going to "opt out" and allow another expert to follow up with you.

Please do not post any further at this time as it will delay the next expert's ability to follow up.

If you need any assistance in the meantime, please contact our customer service at: http://ww2.justanswer.com/help

Thank you for using our forum, and I do wish you the best of luck.

Bill

Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

Hello, new expert here...

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Can you tell me what state this is in? (statutes sometimes dictate access rights)

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Does your lease specifically reserve any access rights to the landlord?

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am in Florida. I would have to look at lease to swear by, but I believe he had right to inspect with notice. Nothing in the lease discusses in event of sale.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am in Florida. I would have to look at lease to swear by, but I believe he has right to inspect with reasonable notice. Nothing in the lease discusses in event of sale.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Has not had sorry.
Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

Ok, just a few minutes please while I look up a couple things..

Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

Ok, under FL law, (FL Statutes 83.53) the landlord has a statutory right to access to the property with proper notice to show the property to prospective purchasers. The notice period is no less than 12 hours..

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So FL is apparently pretty landlord friendly when it comes to access. This is the exact statute:

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83.53 Landlord’s access to dwelling unit.—

(1) The tenant shall not unreasonably withhold consent to the landlord to enter the dwelling unit from time to time in order to inspect the premises; make necessary or agreed repairs, decorations, alterations, or improvements; supply agreed services; or exhibit the dwelling unit to prospective or actual purchasers, mortgagees, tenants, workers, or contractors.

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(2) The landlord may enter the dwelling unit at any time for the protection or preservation of the premises. The landlord may enter the dwelling unit upon reasonable notice to the tenant and at a reasonable time for the purpose of repair of the premises. “Reasonable notice” for the purpose of repair is notice given at least 12 hours prior to the entry, and reasonable time for the purpose of repair shall be between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. The landlord may enter the dwelling unit when necessary for the further purposes set forth in subsection (1) under any of the following circumstances:

(a) With the consent of the tenant;

(b) In case of emergency;

(c) When the tenant unreasonably withholds consent; or

(d) If the tenant is absent from the premises for a period of time equal to one-half the time for periodic rental payments. If the rent is current and the tenant notifies the landlord of an intended absence, then the landlord may enter only with the consent of the tenant or for the protection or preservation of the premises.

(3) The landlord shall not abuse the right of access nor use it to harass the tenant.

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So here, if you are providing reasonable times throughout the week for the landlord to show the property, then I would opine that it would be reasonable for you to prohibit access on the weekends as this would bump up against your legal rights to "quiet use and enjoyment" and "exclusive use and possession" that are inherent under the lease.

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If the landlord tries to bully you, you can always tell him that if he enters without your permission, you will call the police and have them appear and escort anyone off the property and file a formal complaint for harassement. When faced with the prospect of having potential purchasers confronted by the police, or working with you on times where there won't be any conflict, the landlord will normally choose the latter.

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As an aside, in addition to being an attorney, I have also been a landlord for over 26 years and a licensed Realtor for 12 so I have seen this situation play out from all angles..

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thanks

Barrister

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Here's the clause in lease.
Expert:  barristerinky replied 1 year ago.

Yes, that is exactly what the statute that I cited says...

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thanks

Barrister