Profile picture for Vcnielsen

My landlord is selling the house, and has asked me to leave during the open houses. Can he do that?

  • April 06 2012 - Roslindale
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Answers (11)

Profile picture for Vcnielsen
Thanks to all of you that posted replies to my question. I ended moving out to a condo of my own, where I'm the one calling the shots. My landlord eventually sold the house. 

Happy New Year to all!
  • December 29 2012
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Review the lease that you signed.  Normally Landlords establish in writing that the property can be show 30 to 60 days before the lease is over.  Always, of course with previous notification and authorization from the tenant to do so.  If your lease has no such stipulation in it, you do not have to open the door to anybody that would like to see the house.  Even worse, get out of your property when he is showing it.
Best of Luck,

Maria Cipollone
Century 21 Tenace
  • December 29 2012
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Profile picture for sunnyview
They can ask, you don't have to leave. As long as you are paying rent, you have the right to enjoy the property as you choose. It would be nice to work showing times out in exchange for you making yourself scare for showings, but that is up to you.

No matter what you decide to do make sure ALL valuables are locked up or removed before showings start and consider asking the landlord to pay the cost of rental insurance if they plan to hold open houses.
  • December 27 2012
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In the landlords defence it is almost always a bit awkward to be showing a property and the owner or tenants are there. For some buyers it is hard enough to look past the personal photos on the walls eetc.. so they can take mental ownership of the property never mind bumping into the owner in one of the rooms. 
  I do agree that if you feel uncomfortable about leaving and it isn't written anywhere that you have to then don't.
  • December 27 2012
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Profile picture for RafaelAPRG
He can ask you but you really don't have to unless is written on a legal document somewhere.  
  • December 27 2012
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Profile picture for shapiroamg
lock up any medications too. those sometimes dissapear during OHs.
  • April 09 2012
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
There is a phone number in this MA Landlord/Tenant document from your friendly government.

Think of some option s for your negotiation.  Perhaps they could be in the "either/or" category. Here are some possibilities:   Either the landlord or agent carry insurance to cover your losses (although one can never really replace special items of fine art), or you are there with all showings, or the landlord allows you break your lease at no cost to you and move with the landlord paying moving costs.
  • April 06 2012
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Profile picture for Vcnielsen
Thanks for your reply. My main concern are my valuables. I collect fine art and don't feel comfortable at all having strangers come in an out of my apartment unsupervised. Granted, the realtor would be there, but has clearly told me she won't be liable for losses. Do you know if there is any specific tenant rights law that refers to this?
  • April 06 2012
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Profile picture for Newton EcoBroker
If you are under a lease that follow roughly the same guidelines as the Greater Boston Real Estate Board's document, there is a clause in there where the Lessee agrees to cooperate with the Lessor in showing the leased premises to prospected buyers and renters. Does not specifically state the tenant agrees to leave the premises during showings and open houses, just cooperate. I like the 'cup of coffee' approach: sit down with the landlord and come to an agreement you can both live with, whether that is reduced rent for your aggravation, dinner for two at your favorite place, or just better lines of communication. Good luck.
  • April 06 2012
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Profile picture for the_country_hick
I would have the landlord sign something saying he takes responsibility for ALL damage or disappearances of your personal items. I would explain I would not leave my stuff unprotected without his personal coverage.
  • April 06 2012
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Profile picture for wetdawgs
Most likely not, but pull out the MA landlord/tenant handbook and if necessary call the hotline for input.

If I were in your shoes, I'd request that the landlord make it worth my time to leave the place for which I'm paying fair market rent.    For example, I might be willing to consider leaving for one open house a month for rent for 50% of market rent.    An alternative, only have open houses while you are working and out of the place anyway.  

Note:  please lock up all valuables. 
  • April 06 2012
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