tanant changes his locks
December 11, 2005 8:10 AM   Subscribe

What resources do I have or what can I do when one of my tenants changes the locks on me on their unit?
posted by sandrapbrady to Human Relations (18 answers total)
 
I have a few rental properties. My lease mentions this and they must provide a key, otherwise I change them yet again and provide them a key. I charge for this service, if they don't pay, eventually it comes out of their security deposit.

However, I've never had to do this.
posted by thilmony at 8:28 AM on December 11, 2005


What does his lease say about the locks, or about alterations to the unit? If nothing, then he can change them. But, if the lease provides that you as the owner have access to the unit, then you can demand a key, or break the lock.
posted by nicwolff at 8:28 AM on December 11, 2005


I'd just be upfront and ask them for a copy of the key. They most likely just did it for peace of mind--the possibility of previous tenants having access to my home would worry me, too. Out of curiosity, how did you find out they'd changed the locks?
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:35 AM on December 11, 2005


I am selling the property and had a second visit of the units scheduled. All tenants were aware of this.
The day of the visit the locks were changed on one of the higher end units.
This, obviously, hinders the selling process
posted by sandrapbrady at 9:04 AM on December 11, 2005


Woah, that's no good. Just about every lease I've ever signed as a clause that allows the landlord to show the apartment to prospective renters/buyers provided notice is given. Even if it's not specifically stated, the law might be on your side. What state are you in?
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 9:37 AM on December 11, 2005


Canada. Ontario
posted by sandrapbrady at 9:50 AM on December 11, 2005


Curse them, maybe?
posted by AwkwardPause at 9:54 AM on December 11, 2005


We changed our locks a few months ago out of necessity and, er... thanks to this post I've been reminded to let my Landlord know and sort him a copy. Could it be an honest mistake in your case? Here's another vote for just asking.
posted by nthdegx at 10:11 AM on December 11, 2005




Ontario Tenant Protection Act

A quick glance shows these might be applicable: 20, 21, 23, 36, 37
posted by curbstop at 10:12 AM on December 11, 2005


Hmm, not so good with html, same as Civil_Disobedient's
posted by curbstop at 10:14 AM on December 11, 2005


Brilliant, thanks Civil_disobedient!
posted by sandrapbrady at 10:32 AM on December 11, 2005


Thanks Curbstop
posted by sandrapbrady at 10:33 AM on December 11, 2005


I'd ask the tenant for a copy of the key first and if that doesn't work you can take the dispute to
tribunal.
posted by squeak at 10:35 AM on December 11, 2005


From own experience here in California, you must notify the tenant with a 24 hours written notice before an inspection. If they do not enable an entry, or you don't have a key, you have the right to bring a locksmith, open it yourself/ install a new key. When you sell an apartment building, there are always stories like this, at least you know it's just about over, as far as those tenants.
posted by growabrain at 10:48 AM on December 11, 2005


If you've been leaving hebrew curses posted to their door, you can blame me for the change in locks: it's what I recommended in the other thread.

Also, don't leave hebrew curses on tenants' doors.
posted by five fresh fish at 11:04 AM on December 11, 2005


My lease allows my landlord to break down my door and charge me for it if I ever did this...
posted by shanevsevil at 12:38 PM on December 11, 2005


I am selling the property and had a second visit of the units scheduled. All tenants were aware of this.
The day of the visit the locks were changed on one of the higher end units.
This, obviously, hinders the selling process
posted by sandrapbrady at 9:04 AM PST on December 11


Eithre a) you didn't give them enough notice and they're pissed or b) they don't want people in their home while they're away. I think it's generally foolish to sell a property while tenants are still living there and these are two of the reasons.
posted by Optimus Chyme at 9:13 PM on December 11, 2005


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