Terrible landlord in Massachusetts BREAKING LAW! What can I do?

This is a discussion on Terrible landlord in Massachusetts BREAKING LAW! What can I do? within the Landlord vs Tenant Issues forum, part of the REAL ESTATE & PROPERTY LAW category; Originally Posted by Unregistered As I just said, there is no state requirement that they give you prior notice before ...

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Old Dec 9th, 2008, 10:57 PM   #11
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Default Re: Terrible landlord in Massachusetts BREAKING LAW! What can I do?

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Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
As I just said, there is no state requirement that they give you prior notice before coming to your unit. Your state law does not say they have to notify you beforehand.
What are you, a landlord? You sound like one.

Quiet enjoyment is a right to the undisturbed use and enjoyment of real property by a tenant or landowner. The right to quiet enjoyment is contained in covenants concerning real estate. Generally a covenant is an agreement between two parties to do or refrain from doing something.

Courts read a covenant of quiet enjoyment between the Landlord and Tenant into every rental agreement, or tenancy. Thus a renter, or tenant, has the right to quiet enjoyment of the leased premises regardless of whether the rental agreement contains such a covenant.

In the covenant of quiet enjoyment, the landlord promises that during the term of the tenancy no one will disturb the tenant in the tenant's use and enjoyment of the premises. Quiet enjoyment includes the right to exclude others from the premises, the right to peace and quiet, the right to clean premises, and the right to basic services such as heat and hot water and, for high-rise buildings, elevator service. In many respects the implied covenant of quiet enjoyment is similar to an Implied Warranty of habitability, which warrants that the landlord will keep the leased premises in good repair. For example, the failure to provide heat would be a breach of the implied covenant of quiet enjoyment because the lack of heat would interfere with the tenant's use of the premises and would also make the premises uninhabitable, especially in a cold climate.

Other rights related to quiet enjoyment may be tailored to specific situations. For example, at least one court has found that the ringing of smoke alarms for more than a day is an interference with a tenant's quiet enjoyment of leased premises (Manzaro v. McCann, 401 Mass. 880, 519 N.E.2d 1337 [1988]).

Pray you never have a tenant like me.
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Old Dec 10th, 2008, 04:40 PM   #12
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Default Re: Terrible landlord in Massachusetts BREAKING LAW! What can I do?

First off, this post is over 2 months old! Next, your right to quiet enjoyment of your unit cannot interfere with the LL's right to have access to your premises. Many states require the LL to give prior notice before entering the tenant's rented premises. But many, like the poster's state, do not require any type of notice prior to doing so. You do have the right to quietly enjoy your place, but you also cannot interfere with your LL's right to access his property. His exercise of his right to enter is not considered by courts as breaking the quiet enjoyment covenant unless he abuses his right of access by overusing it or breaking the law in some manner.

Of course, the ringing of an alarm unattended for an extended time broke the quiet enjoyment covenant. The LL has the responsibility to stop an alarm from ringing incessantly. But simply excercising his rights as LL is not breaking it. You both have rights and those rights must be balanced out by common sense.

In this case, the tenant has heat. But he is complaining the LL failed to weatherstrip the unit. Weatherstripping is not a right.
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