As a renter, you’re entitled to a certain set of rights. Because it may not always be clear what exactly these rights are, we’re going to do our best to make sure you know as much information about as many of them as possible.
Although specific laws regarding a landlord’s right to enter an occupied apartment vary by state, they tend to be generally similar across the US and Canada.
Short answer: No.
There are many situations in which a landlord may need to enter an apartment, including but not limited to:
- Dealing with an emergency
- Making repairs
- Conducting inspections
- Taking health and safety measures
- Showing the unit to prospective tenants
- Addressing an issue during tenant’s extended absence
- Investigating reasonable belief of a lease violation
In all of these instances, however, there are two important requirements that the landlord must meet in order to comply with the law, the first of which is giving proper notice. The amount of advance notice a landlord must provide to a tenant is typically 24 hours in both the US and Canada, but can actually be up to two days in states like Alabama, Hawaii, Arizona, Washington, or Vermont.
The second part of the landlord’s duty involves the time of entry. Most tenant law states that, once the landlord has given notice to the tenant, they must plan their visit during reasonable hours. This typically translates to sometime between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.
The (obvious) exception
Unsurprisingly, the most prominent exception to these regulations is a severe emergency situation. If there is a fire or a flood in your apartment, for example, your landlord has the right to enter without giving any notice at all. In this situation, though, it’s safe to say that landlord entry benefits all involved parties.
If you feel as though your landlord has violated one of these rules, first address it with him or her directly, and if the issue continues, you can file a suit or local court complaint. Make sure to check your state’s tenant laws before doing this!