Landlords spying led to snooping- What to do?

maryjane45May 8, 2008

So my bf and I have recently moved into a new apartment. The landlord mentioned that he would come by once or twice a week to do yardwork. That's how it was at first but then monday morning I was trying to figure out what the wear and I was walking around my room in a thong and then see my landlord outside my bedroom window (no garden by my bdrm window so no need for him to be there)Since then he has been at the window the same time everyday and stops in about 5 or 6 times throughout the day to do "yardwork" right by all our windows. It started getting really fishy the other day when it was pouring rain and thunder and I counted him out there on 5 different occasions. For the record this is also a very small yard that does not need much maitnance. My bf's boss warned us that he could be at our window constantly to see when we are not around because he probably wants to snoop around. So today I started my new job and before leaving my bf and I were discussing the peeping landlord so we decided to just stick a little note on the bedroom door saying "Spying is creepy and illegal" that way if he entered to snoop before entering the bdroom he would know we know. Put that note up and made sure the door was shut. The front door was locked when I left for work and when I came home the door was still locked. When I go to the bedroom the post-it note is gone and the door is opened. I looked all over and no sight of post it and no windows were open (so it wasn't a random breaking in) and the only person besides my bf and I with access to apt keys is the landlord. I have never been in this type of situation before....what should I do?

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maryjane45

And yes I know its weird that he took the post-it (normal creepers would leave it and pretend they were never there)

    Bookmark   May 8, 2008 at 4:55PM
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lucy

Put up some blinds and use them. He may be totally certifiable and creepy and everything else, but you're also playing games and that's just as wrong.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 5:27AM
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coonx

See if your state has the "Make my day" law.
Make him think that you're off to work, he comes in and you're scared for your life. At the least hold him at gunpoint for the police to arrive, 1st degree B&E. At the worst, his widow might sell the house cheap.
Unless he has permission or doing emergency repairs, he is not allowed to be in the rental unit.
Plus it sounds like it's time to get the moving van back.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2008 at 7:48AM
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nctrnl

I'm suprised the usual response "just move!" wasnt parroted by the typical poster here. I am not advocating that unless you can easily do it.

WHat I DO suggest is that you buy a simple hidden camera setup (you can even get software that allows you to turn a computer with webcam into a makeshift surveillence device) & set it up to record while you are gone. See what he does & if it is really bad/illegal.... you could get him arrested & possibly sue him. I am not a sue-happy person, but i believe in harsh consequences for someone maliciously invading my privacy (ESPECIALLY the landlord!)

This landlord is obviously going to go snooping thru your things while you are gone. For all you know he may be sniffing & wearing your panties (or worse) while you are out! SOmething a landlord is NOT supposed to do. Might as well guard against it.

Lock up anything you dont want him going thru. Use your window shades & be on the lookout for hidden cameras this perv just MAY install if he cant get his daily "window-peep" in.

CHeck to see if there are laws that say when a landlord can come into your apartment without your permission. Most states have some sort of law regarding this (sadly my state doesnt). Be prepared for this guy to use the common landlord excuse that he is inspecting the place & doing repairs (that's why having him caught on camera sniffing your panties or snooping thru your things can prove he is lying... and can be used against him if need be).

IMO a landlord who snoops is a person that should never EVER be a landlord again.

Note: also.... buy some doorknob jams (a long steel device that allows you to prop between the doorknob & floor & prevents someone from entering the property while you are there)... or a small portable doorlock that allows you to lock any door from the inside ... like this... (first item on the page)http://www.walkabouttravelgear.com/safety.htm

Note: also... be prepaired for him to not renew your lease when it expires in retaliation. And if you are on a month to month lease.... be prepared for the possibility of being kicked you out after a month or two. Not saying it WILL happen , but it can.

IMO.... every apartment dweller should have an easily operated video-recording device to guard against snooping landlords.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2008 at 8:31AM
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mdoats

Wow, that is incredibly creepy and disturbing. I don't know what state you are in, but I'd definitely go online and read up on tenant rights. I would definitely install window blinds and keep them drawn, especially if you're in a state of undress. What does your lease say about your landlord entering the apartment? Typically he is only allowed in with your permission or in case of emergency, something like a burst pipe. If there's another incident of him entering the apartment, I'd even call the police. There may not be much they can do, but I'd want the call logged.

Also, if he's as creepy as it sounds... I'd check your home for video equipment that HE installed. Okay, maybe that sounds a bit paranoid, but the thought of someone going in your bedroom without your permission is deeply disturbing. I agree that it's time for a nanny-cam.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2008 at 9:28PM
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GammyT

Call the non emergency number of your police department and tell them what you said here. If the previous tenant had complained too they might just be on to him but haven't been able to catch him.

Also search the internet for Nanny Cams

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 12:42PM
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nightcrawler1961

Well first of all if you know he has access to the back yard, wouldnt logic tell you to either close your curtains, draw the blinds or pull the shades down, or whatever window treatments you have. OK, the first time is unexpected, but the 2nd, c'mon, make the window not so easy to look thru.

Change your locks. If there is a severe emergency that a LL has to go into your apt, and the only emergency would be is a broken pipe or something jut break the window, DUH !!
Because if it is fire, everyone gets out, not in.
Sorry but I do not belive in LL having keys to apt.
....and as far as getting cameras and all that crap, do you really want the expense, time and aggravation....
Just come out and tell him point blank (since he is LL not your friend) Listen, dont be near my windows and dont come into my apt unless you call me beforehand. plain and simple.
geez, Im in a grouchy mood today.... :(

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 9:23AM
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fotostat

We can't make a reasonable judgement until you show us pictures of the events. You can e-mail the pictures of you in your thong directly to me.

Until then, keep walking around in front of your window in a thing while your landlord is right outside that window...

    Bookmark   June 2, 2008 at 9:17AM
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fotostat

"Sorry but I do not belive in LL having keys to apt."

I don't believe in anyone else having a key to my home, which is why I do not rent from other people.

I do however own a condo that I rent out, and you bet your ass I have a key to it. The few times a year that I stop by to make sure everything is working correctly I always put my key in the door after they have opened it to make sure that the locks haven't been changed. The lease is clear, if they change the locks without giving me a key within 24 hours they are out, done, finished.

Since I have good tenants, unlike YOU, they gave me the key to the new lock before they even installed it.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2008 at 9:21AM
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talley_sue_nyc

also, if you are renting the yard as well, he really shouldn't be on it without your prior knowledge or permission. The yard isn't any different from your living room.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2008 at 11:43AM
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jlhug

"Change your locks. If there is a severe emergency that a LL has to go into your apt, and the only emergency would be is a broken pipe or something jut break the window, DUH !!
Because if it is fire, everyone gets out, not in.
Sorry but I do not belive in LL having keys to apt."

Nightcrawler

Just a bit curious, how do you propose that your LL gets access to your apartment if he doesnÂt have keys?

IÂm with fotostat, you change the locks and donÂt give me a new key then you are out of the apartment. I abide by the law and will give my tenants notice as required by the lease. I expect my tenants to abide by the lease.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2008 at 7:37AM
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