Tenants have a number of legal protections against potential abuses by their landlords, and one of those protections is known as the right of quiet enjoyment. This right is a crucial part of protecting the privacy and comfort of tenants, and it can become a serious issue when a landlord violates this right. But what exactly is the right of quiet enjoyment, and what can you do if your landlord violates it?
Explaining the Right of Quiet Enjoyment
Put simply, the right of quiet enjoyment is the right that every tenant has to enjoy their rented property undisturbed. This right prohibits the landlord, as well as any neighbors, from coming into the apartment (or other rented space) without a good reason, or from creating any unnecessary disturbance. This helps to make sure that a tenant is able to live freely and peacefully without concern that their property will be intruded on or disturbed.
How the Right to Quiet Enjoyment Can Be Disturbed
There are many ways a tenant’s right to quiet enjoyment might be disturbed. Some common reasons include:
- Loud or disruptive noises from neighbors’ pets
- Neighbors that party or make loud noises well into the night
- Disruptions caused by infestations of rodents, insects, or other pests
- A landlord making frequent or unnecessary visits to the property
- Performing unnecessary inspections of the property
- Performing unnecessary remodelling work, or unnecessarily long maintenance work
- Harassment towards a tenant or a tenant’s guest
How a Disruption May Not Violate a Tenant’s Rights
Not every disruption is necessarily a violation of a tenant’s right to quiet enjoyment. For example, a landlord is permitted to visit a tenant to ask about overdue rent, and they are permitted to perform routine inspections. They are also allowed to enter into a tenant’s apartment to perform maintenance and repairs, although all non-emergency maintenance requires prior notice from the landlord. Landlords are also not responsible for minor disruptions, such as footsteps from an upstairs apartment or if a neighbor’s smoke alarm goes off and is turned off quickly.
What to Do When the Right to Quiet Enjoyment is Violated
If your right to quiet enjoyment has been violated, you should speak to a landlord-tenant lawyer as soon as possible. An attorney with experience handling landlord-tenant matters can help you to obtain compensation for this violation of your legal rights. The sooner you call, the sooner you can begin to seek relief for your situation.
If you have questions regarding your rights as a landlord or tenant, you should seek advice from an attorney experienced in handling these matters. A New York landlord-tenant lawyer, who is experienced in handling landlord-tenant cases of all sorts, can advise you of your legal rights and will fight for your best interests in court. If you are facing a dispute over unpaid rent, lease violations, or other similar issues, contact the Suffolk County landlord-tenant attorneys at McGuire, Peláez and Bennett at (631) 348-1702.