Do you live in an apartment? Do you have inspections?

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Do you live in an apartment? Do you have inspections?

VioletMoonstone VioletMoonstone
The apartment I'm living in is so annoying! We have inspections several times a year and it's so inconvenient. I usually spend hours and hours cleaning house (cleaning the oven, blinds, window tracks, drip pans, ect ect.) just so that they can show up and look for 1 minute.

I'm also annoyed because they don't tell you what time they are coming or if they are even coming at all. They give everyone a notice to clean up and give you a day but you never know if they'll pick you. I usually end up sitting out in the living room for hours waiting.

My boyfriend works nights so we have blankets up over the windows so he can sleep. Today we have to temporarily take them down so the inspector lady doesn't throw a fit about it. We also have to move a shelf full of books because it's too close to the window.

The thing I hate most is that they gave us an inspection notice last week but never showed up. They came this week and they were only here for a minute and the lady seemed kind of rude to me. Now we have another one today and I don't even know if they are coming or not but we still have to pick up the house, take the blankets down, sit out in the sunlit living room (my boyfriend just worked last night) and wait for them. UGH.

Just yesterday the maintenance man came to the door when we were asleep. He unlocked the door and came right in to check the smoke detector! I'm pissed because I told him (during the last inspection) that my boyfriend was downtown getting new batteries and we would fix it a.s.a.p. Why couldn't he have waited for today to double check? Or just call us? Today is inspection day. Nope, he had to come in the house and freak us out just so he could look at it. I understand it's important but jeez!

We're actually considering moving out because we're so annoyed by the people here.
Answers (private voting - your screen name will NOT appear in the results):
Yes, I live in an apartment and we have inspections.
10
Yes, I live in an apartment but we don't have inspections.
9
No, I don't live in an apartment so I don't have to worry about it!
17
Total votes: 36 (36 voters)
Poll is closed
07/24/2012
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Ansley Ansley
That seems extreme. Granted, the property owner has the right to inspect on a whim, but in my experience they've never been able to dictate where things "belong".

For us? We're not allowed to have curtains that have a colored backing, it has to be white. We're not allowed to leave weird things on our patios (this includes friends and relatives), drape things over the balcony or have crazy decorations outside.

The water heater is inspected twice a year; that's when they change the air filter and then our sprinklers/fire extinguishers are inspected twice a year by the county.

Other than that? They pretty much stay out of our hair.
07/24/2012
PropertyOfPotter PropertyOfPotter
I live in an apartment and we have inspections once a year. They don't tell you whether or not your apartment is going to be inspected or not until a day before. It's annoying trying to make sure everything is perfect only to find that they inspected your neighbor's house and not yours.
07/24/2012
Woman China Woman China
Wow. Even in China they don't just walk into my apartment on a whim. That's against the law here unless it is an emergency or they have the occupants permission.

Wow. That is just wrong.

I know sometimes I get my apartment inspected by the State to make sure that the apartment is suitable for foreign occupancy.

But that is extreme!!! And just plain wrong!!! no one should walk into your private space without permission.
07/24/2012
Ansley Ansley
Quote:
Originally posted by Woman China
Wow. Even in China they don't just walk into my apartment on a whim. That's against the law here unless it is an emergency or they have the occupants permission.

Wow. That is just wrong.

I know sometimes I get my apartment ...
It's illegal to walk into an apartment without 24-hour notification unless it is an emergency or a maintenance request.

@Violetmoonstone: I'm also pretty sure it's illegal to let you change the batteries in the detector. Why would your boyfriend be responsible for purchasing new batteries?
07/24/2012
VioletMoonstone VioletMoonstone
At the time of the inspection the smoke detector was on the table and the battery was pulled out because we checked it and the battery was dying. My boyfriend went to the store just to get batteries and while he was gone the inspectors came (surprise!) and had a fit about the smoke detector. I told them I was waiting for my boyfriend to come back home with new batteries for it. Plus I'm really short and even on a chair I can't reach up there. My boyfriend is 6'5 so I told them I was waiting for him to come back. Apparently they didn't believe me (figures) because the guy came back the next day at a random time to see for himself. They didn't even call or anything. I guess they wanted to know if I was telling the truth? Or were they THAT concerned about our well being? I'm sure they didn't believe me the first time.

It's our responsibility to make sure we have batteries in them and that we check them every month. It's just a part of our rental agreement.
07/24/2012
VioletMoonstone VioletMoonstone
Quote:
Originally posted by PropertyOfPotter
I live in an apartment and we have inspections once a year. They don't tell you whether or not your apartment is going to be inspected or not until a day before. It's annoying trying to make sure everything is perfect only to find that they ...
I hate this! Ahhh!
07/24/2012
spookycutie spookycutie
That's ridiculous! In my state, they (by law) HAVE to give you 48 hours notice before anything like that unless it's an absolute emergency, like a gas leak or something.

In our old apartment, they inspected once a year - right before our lease ended, before we re-signed it.

We just moved into the apartment we're in now last week, but the landlord doesn't seem pesky.
07/24/2012
VioletMoonstone VioletMoonstone
Quote:
Originally posted by Woman China
Wow. Even in China they don't just walk into my apartment on a whim. That's against the law here unless it is an emergency or they have the occupants permission.

Wow. That is just wrong.

I know sometimes I get my apartment ...
They have every right to come in whenever they want, IF they tell us first. They didn't tell us the guy was coming to check the smoke detector the next day. We had no idea he was coming. They didn't even call us! If we weren't home he would have still come in anyway. That bugs me. I like to be here when the inspectors show up because I'm paranoid like that. But now that I know they can just walk right in here at any time it bugs the heck out of me. I hope it doesn't happen again or I'm going to complain big time.
07/24/2012
Ansley Ansley
Quote:
Originally posted by VioletMoonstone
At the time of the inspection the smoke detector was on the table and the battery was pulled out because we checked it and the battery was dying. My boyfriend went to the store just to get batteries and while he was gone the inspectors came ...
Is the property owned by a management company or is this a case of some douchebag who thinks he'd make a killing in rental property? 'Cause the smoke detectors in my state are protected and inspected by law and I can be fined $1000 for looking at the thing sideways. So, to be expected to change the batteries myself is a bit incomprehensible for me.
07/24/2012
Bignuf Bignuf
Quote:
Originally posted by VioletMoonstone
The apartment I'm living in is so annoying! We have inspections several times a year and it's so inconvenient. I usually spend hours and hours cleaning house (cleaning the oven, blinds, window tracks, drip pans, ect ect.) just so that they ...
We have lived in apartments when building several houses over the last few years, but I never, ever recall an "inspection". The complex would send a reminder for folks to check their smoke detectors and would leave a new air filter on the door step. The would come in ONLY if asked to. My daughter lives in a nice apartment complex now and the too, ONLY come in if asked. NO such thing as "inspections"???
07/24/2012
Bignuf Bignuf
Quote:
Originally posted by Ansley
It's illegal to walk into an apartment without 24-hour notification unless it is an emergency or a maintenance request.

@Violetmoonstone: I'm also pretty sure it's illegal to let you change the batteries in the detector. Why would ...
That's what WE are thinking. That is something the apartment complex is LEGALLY required to provide.
07/24/2012
Gary A. Gary A.
Quote:
Originally posted by VioletMoonstone
The apartment I'm living in is so annoying! We have inspections several times a year and it's so inconvenient. I usually spend hours and hours cleaning house (cleaning the oven, blinds, window tracks, drip pans, ect ect.) just so that they ...
I don't think we have experienced "inspections" before, at least while someone was home.
07/24/2012
Miss Nessa Miss Nessa
Quote:
Originally posted by VioletMoonstone
The apartment I'm living in is so annoying! We have inspections several times a year and it's so inconvenient. I usually spend hours and hours cleaning house (cleaning the oven, blinds, window tracks, drip pans, ect ect.) just so that they ...
We currently don't have inspections but we do have people come in every last Monday of the month to spay. It's to make sure we don't get bugs or anything. When I leave with my mom, she had them every year. But it wasn't the apartment complex it was section 8 this housing program she use to be in. In order for her to keep the section 8 she had to have yearly inspections to prove that she is taking care of the place. It was annoying because we had to do all that. Replace blinds, clean carpets, and even sometimes paint. haha
07/24/2012
Woman China Woman China
Quote:
Originally posted by VioletMoonstone
They have every right to come in whenever they want, IF they tell us first. They didn't tell us the guy was coming to check the smoke detector the next day. We had no idea he was coming. They didn't even call us! If we weren't home he ...
No. I would honestly say complain now.

They've done it the once, who is to say they have not done it while you were not there?

You pay rent, that apartment is yours. They must tell you in advance that they are coming, they did not. And even if they tell you in advance that they are coming, they must still knock.

What this yahoo did was just plain and simple wrong.

I would do something now. Prevent something from happening in the future.
07/24/2012
VioletMoonstone VioletMoonstone
I'm pretty sure the blankets over the windows and the shelf too close to the window counts as a "fire hazard." Trust me, if there was a fire (does it matter if it was curtains or a blanket that's ablaze?) Either way I'd rip it down and get out somehow. Our bookshelf is loaded and it's in the corner so half of it kind of blocks the window. I can understand what they need us to do but it's annoying. As soon as they leave (if they even come at all) my blankets are going back up so me and my boyfriend can go to sleep. lol.
07/24/2012
ToyTimeTim ToyTimeTim
I agree this sounds a bit over board. The maintenance guy should at least knock before entering. Inspections are just part of life when you rent, read the lease and see what it has to say. That is a binding legal document and not only gives you certain rights but also the management. Read it carefully and ask about any items you are not sure about.

From the other side, so to speak.

I manage five apts for my mom who lives 1100 miles away. In the lease agreement we state that we will give 24hr notice when possible when we will be coming into the apt, this providing it is not an emergency. In four years I have only had to just show up (emergency) once, this was due to a plumbing leak and I could not reach the tenant.

We do yearly inspections where we check outlets for to many cord, leaks around the sink, holes in the walls etc. While I do my best to schedule such inspections with tenants, it does not always work out right. Still, I have never just walked in. I will knock/call first before walking in. On this note, I have walked in when folks are home but they did not see the need to answer the door.

Smoke detectors should be checked monthly, as such it is the tenants responsibility to make sure they are working correctly (would you want me coming every month just to press a button?). This sort of falls into the realm of cover your ass. Not only are you protecting the property but also your possessions. Once again, check your lease to see where the responsibility lies.

Pull out that lease and look it over, this is your best bet for the current situation. If you find that management is over stepping their bounds, you will have cause to bring it up and have matters taken care of.
07/24/2012
P'Gell P'Gell
Wow. That sounds horrible. In most states, as long as it isn't subsidized housing, apartment owners have to gain a court order to enter your apartment with a key or otherwise without your consent. What the maintenance man did may have been illegal.

I wouldn't live in a place like that if I could help it. It sound ridiculous. I lived in an apartment that belonged to the University when I was in college and they couldn't come in without our OK even then.
07/24/2012
VioletMoonstone VioletMoonstone
Quote:
Originally posted by Ansley
Is the property owned by a management company or is this a case of some douchebag who thinks he'd make a killing in rental property? 'Cause the smoke detectors in my state are protected and inspected by law and I can be fined $1000 for ...
We have a woman in charge here who lives nearby and works in the office with some other employees. They are definitely working for higher up people though! I think this is why there's been multiple inspections. The landlord lady wants us to get our stuff together BEFORE the other inspector people come because they get really ocd about things.
07/24/2012
P'Gell P'Gell
In most states, apartment owners and their workers have to gain a court order to enter your apartment with a key or otherwise without your consent unless it's an emergency, like Tim said. Checking a smoke alarm is not really an emergency, I would guess.

(Although the owner could get fined for not having the smoke alarms working. It would be his or her ass on the line if something happened and a smoke alarm was found not working. Landlords are prosecuted all the time in Chicago for fires happening where there are nonworking smoke alarms.) However, what the maintenance man did may have been illegal. Depending on your lease and the laws in your state.
07/24/2012
VioletMoonstone VioletMoonstone
Both me and my boyfriend were dead asleep so I don't know if he knocked on the door or not. I figure he probably did? We woke up to the sound of the door opening and the guy yelling out, "maintenance!!!" It was a shocker.

We live in income based housing that's owned by the state but it's run by different people. I'm pretty sure the inspector and maintenance guy were from out of town. They don't know anything about us or know that my boyfriend works nights. I'm also pretty sure they were creeped out/surprised by our "spooky house." We collect oddball things and we have a lot of skulls and things of the like.

I just cleaned up the kitchen but I have a few other things to take care of.
07/24/2012
Petite Valentine Petite Valentine
Quote:
Originally posted by Ansley
Is the property owned by a management company or is this a case of some douchebag who thinks he'd make a killing in rental property? 'Cause the smoke detectors in my state are protected and inspected by law and I can be fined $1000 for ...
In most states the landlord is legally obligated to install/provide alarms, but changing batteries and checking that they work is the tenants' responsibility.

As for dictating where things belong, the landlord can insist something be moved if it creates a hazard. That bookshelf blocking the window may not seem like a big deal in the bright light of day when there's no emergency, but what if you wake up to a dark apartment, filled with choking smoke and can't see six inches in front of you? Seconds can mean the difference between life and death in a fire, and you don't want to waste them moving something you know shouldn't have been left in front of your exit.

Safety aside, if a tenant repeatedly fails inspection the landlord is no longer legally required to renew the lease.
07/24/2012
Ash1141 Ash1141
Don't live in an apartment so sorry but I would be annoyed with this.
07/24/2012
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by Petite Valentine
In most states the landlord is legally obligated to install/provide alarms, but changing batteries and checking that they work is the tenants' responsibility.

As for dictating where things belong, the landlord can insist something be ...
The smoke alarms in our area work the same way, the tenants are responsible for the batteries, but the owner or maintenance is responsible for making sure the job got done. There are dozens or more people killed in our area every year due to the fact that a smoke alarm was not working. The landlords get huge fines if this is found to be the case.

A girl my daughter went to school with was killed and her boyfriend is in a coma from the smoke from a fire in a rental property just a few days ago. So sad. Their smoke alarms did not have working batteries in then.
07/24/2012
Ansley Ansley
Quote:
Originally posted by Petite Valentine
In most states the landlord is legally obligated to install/provide alarms, but changing batteries and checking that they work is the tenants' responsibility.

As for dictating where things belong, the landlord can insist something be ...
Well thank God I live in Georgia. Because, it is not my responsibility, it is the apartment complex's. The only thing I am responsible for is notifying them of a problem. And it's not like it's not obvious when a smoke detector battery is dying - you can't get the thing to shut the hell up.
07/24/2012
Petite Valentine Petite Valentine
Quote:
Originally posted by P'Gell
In most states, apartment owners and their workers have to gain a court order to enter your apartment with a key or otherwise without your consent unless it's an emergency, like Tim said. Checking a smoke alarm is not really an emergency, I would ...
I am not familiar with housing laws for all 50 states, but I know this is not the case in much of the Northeast. Landlords maintain a right of entry, which extends to Maintenance workers who are authorized to perform tasks on behalf of the landlord. They can enter an apartment to inspect it as long as they provide notice (the time varies, but is usually no less than 24-hours).

Many tenants consider it an annoyance and invasion of privacy, but landlords don't have a choice. If something were to happen, the landlord would be held accountable, and in some cases that means jail time in addition to heavy fines. Also, if the housing is in any way funded by the state, the landlords are required to provide proof of compliance with state laws quarterly.
07/24/2012
DeliciousB DeliciousB
I'm glad I moved into a house to avoid dealing with these issues and other people.
07/24/2012
Ansley Ansley
Quote:
Originally posted by Petite Valentine
In most states the landlord is legally obligated to install/provide alarms, but changing batteries and checking that they work is the tenants' responsibility.

As for dictating where things belong, the landlord can insist something be ...
I leased apartments for years, as in from the management side. I know the laws of my state. But, to say the least? I am not at all impressed with the laws up north if this post is anything to go by.
07/24/2012
P'Gell P'Gell
Quote:
Originally posted by Petite Valentine
I am not familiar with housing laws for all 50 states, but I know this is not the case in much of the Northeast. Landlords maintain a right of entry, which extends to Maintenance workers who are authorized to perform tasks on behalf of the landlord. ...
Yes, state subsidized housing is subject to different rules. I was thinking of simple apartment rental. My best friend owns a building and under NO circumstance can she enter her tenents' apartments, and it's right upstairs and downstairs from her. If there are problems, she has to call the police. But, she's still responsible for the smoke alarms, hallway lighting, heat, windows, gas, etc. The building she owns is not state subsidized.
07/24/2012
brevado brevado
Only time I ever had inspections was while in the service.
07/24/2012
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