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Can a landlord forbid gun ownership in his apartment complex?

MaggieD

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On the one hand, we might say, "Absolutely. It's his property, he can do what he wants as long as he's not discriminating based on his state's or Federal civil rights laws."

On the other, we might say, "No way. Owning a gun is a Constitutional right. My home, whether rented or NOT, becomes my private property when I sign a lease."

Should a landlord be able to add a covenant in his lease that says, "Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting in national and local elections"?

Or

"Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting Republican in national and local elections"?

Aside from such a ban being difficult to enforce, I don't think it would stand scrutiny. Management can't search my property. If I don't admit to having guns in my home, what is he to do?
 

WCH

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On the one hand, we might say, "Absolutely. It's his property, he can do what he wants as long as he's not discriminating based on his state's or Federal civil rights laws."

On the other, we might say, "No way. Owning a gun is a Constitutional right. My home, whether rented or NOT, becomes my private property when I sign a lease."

Should a landlord be able to add a covenant in his lease that says, "Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting in national and local elections"?

Or

"Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting Republican in national and local elections"?

Aside from such a ban being difficult to enforce, I don't think it would stand scrutiny. Management can't search my property. If I don't admit to having guns in my home, what is he to do?


In Texas, one of these signs might do the trick for the apartment owners.

th_43590_30_06_122_562lo.jpg

TexasCHLforum.com • View topic - Signs for the CHLer
 

Woodman909

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On the one hand, we might say, "Absolutely. It's his property, he can do what he wants as long as he's not discriminating based on his state's or Federal civil rights laws."

On the other, we might say, "No way. Owning a gun is a Constitutional right. My home, whether rented or NOT, becomes my private property when I sign a lease."

Should a landlord be able to add a covenant in his lease that says, "Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting in national and local elections"?

Or

"Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting Republican in national and local elections"?

Aside from such a ban being difficult to enforce, I don't think it would stand scrutiny. Management can't search my property. If I don't admit to having guns in my home, what is he to do?

I can understand an owners reluctance to having firearms in the home. But what if the renter was a law enforcement agent? Hard call, as it would be seen as discrimination. Another tact would be the landlord's sorrow if he/she were being attacked and wished he/she had something other than a steak knife to defend him/herself, or his/her tenant could provide assistance in time.
 

davidtaylorjr

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On the one hand, we might say, "Absolutely. It's his property, he can do what he wants as long as he's not discriminating based on his state's or Federal civil rights laws."

On the other, we might say, "No way. Owning a gun is a Constitutional right. My home, whether rented or NOT, becomes my private property when I sign a lease."

Should a landlord be able to add a covenant in his lease that says, "Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting in national and local elections"?

Or

"Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting Republican in national and local elections"?

Aside from such a ban being difficult to enforce, I don't think it would stand scrutiny. Management can't search my property. If I don't admit to having guns in my home, what is he to do?

You would have a hard time fighting the landlord because a court would most likely say there are other housing options.
 

MaggieD

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You would have a hard time fighting the landlord because a court would most likely say there are other housing options.

And they would have a hard time enforcing it, yes? "Nope. I don't have any guns in the house." An eviction takes due process. It would get very expensive for a property management company to take that position.
 

Torrent

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On Voteing they would have no leg to stand on. I suppose the landowner could be really passive aggressive on their tenent if there political views clash but putting a "No Republicans Need Apply" clause in contract is asking for a lawsuit.

As for Gun ownership its more iffy. It could go either way in court if the subject came up but haveing the gun aginst the landowners wishes would be the same as running a redlight when no one saw you.

As Aladdin said "Your only in trouble if you get caught."
 

davidtaylorjr

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And they would have a hard time enforcing it, yes? "Nope. I don't have any guns in the house." An eviction takes due process. It would get very expensive for a property management company to take that position.

I don't think it would be an eviction more of they would tell you to remove the firearm and if you refused, call the police. While you may be leasing, it is not your property. I am a landlord and our tenants have to get everything approved by us. We still own the property and we control it.
 

MaggieD

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I don't think it would be an eviction more of they would tell you to remove the firearm and if you refused, call the police. While you may be leasing, it is not your property. I am a landlord and our tenants have to get everything approved by us. We still own the property and we control it.

Nope. The police would have absolutely nothing to do with it. Landlords don't have force of law behind them (other than in the eviction process) unless someone is doing something that's illegal. Having a gun in one's home in Colorado is not illegal.
 

davidtaylorjr

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Nope. The police would have absolutely nothing to do with it. Landlords don't have force of law behind them (other than in the eviction process) unless someone is doing something that's illegal. Having a gun in one's home in Colorado is not illegal.

I understand where you are coming from, but an apartment is no the same as a home. It just isn't. It's no different than them saying you can't smoke in your apartment, can't have a pet in your apartment, and other issues. At that point it also comes down to the ethics of the tenant. You sign a lease agreement and know what is spelled out in it, you should abide by it.
 

WCH

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I don't think it would be an eviction more of they would tell you to remove the firearm and if you refused, call the police. While you may be leasing, it is not your property. I am a landlord and our tenants have to get everything approved by us. We still own the property and we control it.

Seems it would fly in the face of the Castle doctrine [least in Texas] to deny possession in your domicile.
 

davidtaylorjr

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Seems it would fly in the face of the Castle doctrine [least in Texas] to deny possession in your domicile.

For the record, I am for people having firearms in their home :D
 

WCH

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For the record, I am for people having firearms in their home :D

I know you are. :)

I suppose if they weren't allowed and an incident such as a home invasion happened where the use of your gun were obvious....you might need to seek other housing.
 

GottaGo

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I understand where you are coming from, but an apartment is no the same as a home. It just isn't. It's no different than them saying you can't smoke in your apartment, can't have a pet in your apartment, and other issues. At that point it also comes down to the ethics of the tenant. You sign a lease agreement and know what is spelled out in it, you should abide by it.

Excluded would be grandfathered guns., not the tenants themselves. New tenants or guns, absolutely.
 

MaggieD

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Personally, as soon as I knew of the restriction [infringement], off I would go. LMAO at those unprotected MoFos.

Two apartment complexes side by side. Two signs.

Notice: This apartment complex is a gun-free zone.

Notice: This one isn't.

Where do we want to live?
 

WCH

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Two apartment complexes side by side. Two signs.

Notice: This apartment complex is a gun-free zone.

Notice: This one isn't.

Where do we want to live?

Not sure I even want to live next to the one most attractive to criminals. Might get some spill-over. ;)
 

Simon W. Moon

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For general edification


Minnesota gun owner accuses landlord of eviction over firearms - KMSP-TV
March 2013
In trying to determine how the law applies, FOX 9 News stumped several real estate attorneys because it isn't crystal clear how the law applies to this specific situation.

In 2009, the state Legislature enacted a law limiting guns on some private property. It reads: "Landlords may not restrict the lawful carry of firearms by tenants or their guests."

Landlord-Tenant Law and the Right to Bear Arms | Washington Landlord Tenant Law
November 9th, 2008
The US Supreme Court recently rendered an important decision on the right to bear arms under the US constitution. The decision applies to government action, not private relationships such as landlord and tenant.

The Michigan Court of Appeals has ruled that a public housing landlord may enforce a lease provision prohibiting tenants from possessing firearms by evicting tenants that violate it. The court cited legal precedents that establish the right to bear arms is not absolute and is subject to reasonable regulation. [1]

It is important to note that although the tenant in question had apparent mental health issues, the court upheld the eviction of the tenant not as a nuisance or threat to other tenants, but upheld the landlord’s right to enforce the lease provision banning all firearms in the leased premises.

The Washington state Supreme Court held in a 2006 decision that a city government acting in a proprietary capacity as property owner could place conditions on firearms on property.[2]​


Can Landlords Limit Their Tenants’ Second Amendment Right to Bear Arms? - AllPropertyManagement.com

...many landlords and property managers have been wondering if their property rights allow them to limit gun ownership in their rental properties without violating the Second Amendment right to bear arms. The answer is yes. The Second Amendment is a limit on government power, not a limit on private citizens. And if a private citizen landlord wants to ban guns in his or her rental properties, there is no Second Amendment violation.
However, if you do want to limit or prohibit firearms on your rental property, implementing and enforcing those policies could be difficult.​

http://mdwhome.mdw.army.mil/sja/Landlord-Tenant/VA Landlord-Tenant Handbook.doc
ILLEGAL CONDITIONS: The following are illegal and unenforceable conditions, even if written into a lease agreement. Tenants cannot be required to:
• Give up their rights to the lawful ownership of firearms in their own public housing rental unit, unless required to do so by federal law or regulation. This does not apply to privately owned rental units.
 

Simon W. Moon

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But what if the renter was a law enforcement agent?
then they should rent from someone else or ask for an exception to be added to the lease.

Hard call, as it would be seen as discrimination.
Most discrimination is not illegal.

Nope. The police would have absolutely nothing to do with it. Landlords don't have force of law behind them (other than in the eviction process) unless someone is doing something that's illegal. Having a gun in one's home in Colorado is not illegal.
Yeah, pretty sure this is a civil matter, not a criminal one.

Seems it would fly in the face of the Castle doctrine [least in Texas] to deny possession in your domicile.
PENAL CODE  CHAPTER 9. JUSTIFICATION EXCLUDING CRIMINAL RESPONSIBILITY
Doesn't seem to give you a right to posess firearms when you have agreed not to.
Seems to apply to force against intruders w/o regard to whether you use a baseball bat, hedge trimmers, your wife's meatloaf, or w/e including firearms.
 

WorldWatcher

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On the one hand, we might say, "Absolutely. It's his property, he can do what he wants as long as he's not discriminating based on his state's or Federal civil rights laws."

On the other, we might say, "No way. Owning a gun is a Constitutional right. My home, whether rented or NOT, becomes my private property when I sign a lease."

Should a landlord be able to add a covenant in his lease that says, "Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting in national and local elections"?

Or

"Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting Republican in national and local elections"?

Aside from such a ban being difficult to enforce, I don't think it would stand scrutiny. Management can't search my property. If I don't admit to having guns in my home, what is he to do?


First of all I'm a gun owner and currently have 3 firearms in my safe. Secondly I support an individuals right to carry a firearm outside their residence for self-defense. Finally, I think such a restriction is silly. So with that out of the way...


1. The Second Amendment prevents government suppression of the right to keep and bear arms. It has nothing to do with a private individuals right to property and to control access to that property.

2. If you believe in smaller more limited government, then the answer seems obvious, ya the landowner should be able to define the terms of a lease whereby renters agree that they will not keep firearms on the premisses. A lease is nothing more then a contract between two parties, in this case neither are government entities, therefore it is between two private individuals. No one is forced to sign a lease/contract, therefore the agreement is voluntarily entered into by both parties - if you don't want to agree to the terms, rent somewhere else.

3. Finally lease agreements (and I've signed more then a few in my travels around the country) contain provisions where the landowner can enter the property and determine if the renter is in compliance with the lease agreement. Typically a lease will include something along these lines...

ACCESS TO PREMISES: Lessee shall permit the Lessor access to the premises at all reasonable times, subject to the notice requirements of applicable law or ordinance, to inspect the premises and/or to make any necessary repairs, maintenance or improvements or supply necessary or agreed upon services, or to determine Lessor’s compliance with the provisions of this Lease. In the event of an emergency or where repairs in the building require access to Lessee’s premises, Lessor may enter without prior notice to Lessee, without the same being considered a forcible entry by Lessor. Lessee’s failure to provide such access shall be a breach of this lease, and Lessor shall be entitled to terminate this lease in the event such access is denied by Lessee.​


>>>>
 

Jerry

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On the one hand, we might say, "Absolutely. It's his property, he can do what he wants as long as he's not discriminating based on his state's or Federal civil rights laws."

On the other, we might say, "No way. Owning a gun is a Constitutional right. My home, whether rented or NOT, becomes my private property when I sign a lease."

Should a landlord be able to add a covenant in his lease that says, "Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting in national and local elections"?

Or

"Anyone renting from XYZ Property Management is prohibited from voting Republican in national and local elections"?

Aside from such a ban being difficult to enforce, I don't think it would stand scrutiny. Management can't search my property. If I don't admit to having guns in my home, what is he to do?
To the best of my knowledge this is handled at the State level, and will very with each State.

Many states do not address the issue, while in other states like VA it is specifically illegal for landlords to disallow firearms:
LIS > Code of Virginia > 55-248.9

§ 55-248.9. Prohibited provisions in rental agreements.

A. A rental agreement shall not contain provisions that the tenant:

1. Agrees to waive or forego rights or remedies under this chapter;

2. Agrees to waive or forego rights or remedies pertaining to the 120-day conversion or rehabilitation notice required in the Condominium Act (§ 55-79.39 et seq.), the Virginia Real Estate Cooperative Act (§ 55-424 et seq.) or Chapter 13 (§ 55-217 et seq.) of this title;

3. Authorizes any person to confess judgment on a claim arising out of the rental agreement;

4. Agrees to pay the landlord's attorney's fees except as provided in this chapter;

5. Agrees to the exculpation or limitation of any liability of the landlord to the tenant arising under law or to indemnify the landlord for that liability or the costs connected therewith;

6. Agrees as a condition of tenancy in public housing to a prohibition or restriction of any lawful possession of a firearm within individual dwelling units unless required by federal law or regulation; or

7. Agrees to both the payment of a security deposit and the provision of a bond or commercial insurance policy purchased by the tenant to secure the performance of the terms and conditions of a rental agreement, if the total of the security deposit and the bond or insurance premium exceeds the amount of two months' periodic rent.

B. A provision prohibited by subsection A included in a rental agreement is unenforceable. If a landlord brings an action to enforce any of the prohibited provisions, the tenant may recover actual damages sustained by him and reasonable attorney's fees.
 

Simon W. Moon

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Many states do not address the issue, while in other states like VA it is specifically illegal for landlords to disallow firearms:
"in public housing"

As the Army site I quoted above notes, this does not apply to private landlords.
 

Jerry

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"in public housing"

As the Army site I quoted above notes, this does not apply to private landlords.
An additional example is Ohio:
Lawriter - ORC - 2923.126 [Effective Until1/1/2014] Duties of licensed individual.
(b) A landlord may not prohibit or restrict a tenant who is a licensee and who on or after September 9, 2008, enters into a rental agreement with the landlord for the use of residential premises, and the tenant's guest while the tenant is present, from lawfully carrying or possessing a handgun on those residential premises.

In Texas, a landlord cannot control what lawful private property the tenant has inside the home, only outside the home...http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/SOTWDocs/PR/htm/PR.92.htm...and can only evict a tenant for these reasons: Texas Property Code - Section 92.332. Nonretaliation - Texas Attorney Resources - Texas Laws

Many states look the other way, some states deal with the issue.
 

VanceMack

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Consistency is the key. If the landlord is allowed to discriminate, then it should be universal. At that point...let capitalism rule. People dont want to live there, then they wont. They also cant randomly change rules.
 
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