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Can a landlord limit a tenants visitors?

My girlfriend and I live in Massachusetts. She live about 15 minute away from me. I usually sleep over her house a couple of times per week and have been doing this for the past year.

She has been living in the same apartment for about 10 years. Just last night, her landlord told her that I can't stay over anymore. She stated once in a while is ok, but not on a weekly basis. She didn't give a reason as to why.

We never disturb them. We are always quite. She pays her rent on time. There is no real reason, as far as I know, that her landlord would do this.

My question is, can she do this? There is nothing in the lease stating she can't have visitors or that the landlord can limit her visitors. Does she have a right to limit who can visit my girlfriend and how frequently?

Also, if no one knows, where would I go to find out more information about this and my girlfriends rights?

Just a side, I parked my car on the street last week and I got a parking ticket, for some reason. My car was parked legally, I had a visitors pass on my dash and it wasn't parked there for more than a couple of hours. Apparently, the landlord complained about my car and I got ticketed. If this continues, could it be considered harassment?

 
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visitors and guests of tenant

A landlord can place any conditions on a tenancy not regulated by law (discrimination, waivers of liability, etc. being most commonly out of reach). However, such conditions have to be clearly stated in any written lease agreement in order for the landlord to terminate a tenancy for "cause" (leading to slightly accelerated eviction proceedings). If the lease is silent about the number or frequency of visitors, then the best the landlord can do is to refuse to extent the tenancy at whatever the next relevant opportunity is. In the case of lease, it will be prior to the termination of the existing lease. In tenancy at will cases, it's about 2 months before the last month the landlord wants the tenant there.
 
If your girlfriend wants to keep renting where she's at though, the best thing might be to just comply with what the landlord wants so they don't have any reason to refuse to rent to her in the future. In general though, there are plenty of online sources to learn about tenant's rights.
W/re to the parking ticket, if there was no parking violation, you should request a hearing to try to have the ticket rescinded. In the future, you might try parking farther away from the apartment if you suspect it's the landlord trying to retaliate in some way.

Landlord limiting guests in apartment

Yes, I generally agree with the above comment:  A landlord can insert language in a lease or tenancy agreement that limits the tenant's right to have guests or to make copies of keys for guests, etc.  If the tenant violates that lease term (a term she agreed to when signed the document) then the landlord can attempt to evict (with a lease) or simply choose to terminate the rental agreement (with a tenancy at will).  Without such language, however, the landlord will have a difficult time evicting a tenant with a lease because of guests.  The landlord may still choose to end a tenancy at will or to not renew the lease when it expires.

Difference between unauthorized occupant and visitor

Respected Sir/Madam,

This is a residential condominium and my friend pays $566 as his room rent (total rent of the unit is $1700). I visited my friend with a plan to stay for 2 weeks but unfortunately, my stay is causing him a mysterious fine. The landlord considers me as an unauthorized occupant and says that a guest could not stay for more then 2 nights. He had asked my friend to pay $100 per night for any extended stay beyond 2 nights, as it is a violation of lease for an unauthorized occupancy.

The lease says that "any change in the occupancy will require written consent of the landlord" and it also says that "any change in occupancy may be subject to an adjustment in the amount of rent." The lease does not speak anything about duration of stay for a guest and neither it says anywhere that extended period of stay would be charged as $100 per night. It is also not clear in the lease that under what circumstances a guest would be considered as an unauthorized occupant. My friend did not informed the landlord about my visit as he didn't knew that visit beyond 2 days would change my status as an "unauthorized occupant" instead of a guest. I immediately evicted the property (on 6th day) the moment it was verbally informed to us that the guest could visit for only 2 days but nothing such thing is mentioned in the lease. Even after my immediate eviction, the landlord fined my friend for remaining 4 days ($400) and had asked to deposit the amount by next 5 days to his account from today (12/8/2011).

I was wondering if the landlord is legally right to consider me as an unauthorized occupant and putting a fine of $100 per night on my friend. How the law differentiate between a guest and an unauthorized occupancy if the lease is not transparent about this issue?

I would be highly obliged for your early reply.

Thanking you
SSG

Occupant or guest

It's a good question.  I cannot predict how a court will interpret specific language, but if I were the landlord's attorney I would prefer to see language about overnight or short-term guests with the amount of additional rent clearly stated.  As a general point of law, when faced with an ambiguous document or contract, a court in MA will interpret the language in a way that is most favourable to the non-drafting party.  I also wonder if a court would find the amount charged reasonable. 

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