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Tenant Privacy Rights

Tenants have the right to use their rental without interference, receive advance warning about landlord entry and to have their application details destroyed after signing a lease.

Landlord tenant law in the United States prevents your landlord from disrupting your privacy by entering your rental unit whenever he or she feels like it, harassing you in any way, letting neighbors harass you, or interfering with your ability to enjoy the space in any other way.

Landlord entry laws

Landlord entry laws

The Uniform Residential Landlord Tenant Act specifies that a landlord cannot enter your rental unit without your permission whenever he or she feels like it. Your consent and advance notice are required except in the case of an emergency, like a fire or anything else that would threaten someone's life in the very short term.

Some states also enacted their own access laws, so make sure to check out if your state law gives you more specifics.


Some states have laws that define what is and isn’t considered neighbor harassment as well as landlord harassment. For example in New York and California you'll be able to find detailed lists of things that a landlord can and cannot do to a tenant. If something classifies as harassment, you can sue them for damages.

If you can prove that your neighbor is doing something to intentionally disrupt your ability to enjoy your rental unit in any way, then you could leave you apartment without penalties by invoking the legal concept of quiet enjoyment.

Next steps

If you're wondering about your rights to privacy as a tenant in your state you should read the specific state laws about your landlord's right of entry and quiet enjoyment.

The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice.

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