Landlord in my Yard Every Day

By Bill

I am renting one half of a duplex in a town in Iowa, and most of the time, my landlord is several states away — which is great, as he is a real pain. He comes here for two-week stints in the Spring and Fall, and it really affects my quality of life. He seems to think notifying us that he’s in town means he can come over at any time. I often catch him standing in the back yard, staring at the house. The house was recently painted, so he feasibly has an excuse to do this, but he is over here every day, and I’ve caught him standing and staring several times. I came home at night a couple times and he was on the porch for no apparent reason. One time he, came in the house and finished doing my laundry and told me I had put too many clothes in the drier. Again, the basement had flooded, so he had an excuse to be down there.

This past week, he has been over, lurking around the yard, every day. There are several problems that need looking into, but he generally has other people do repairs, and he still hasn’t started to fix anything. The other day, he walked right in the house to replace a screen (or remove the old one — it still hasn’t been replaced). The next day, he came in my room while I was gone and broke my computer charger when he moved my desk to fix the radiator. He didn’t call or leave a note or anything. I called him and told him he really needed to give us notice when he comes over, and he got very defensive. I said I wanted a rent reduction to compensate for my charger, and he started accusing me of breaking the radiator (which was ancient) and of letting the next door neighbor (his other tenant) store his furniture in my side of the house over the summer while I was gone (he claimed this is not covered in the lease, even though I was still paying rent for the three months I was out of town). He told me I was being lippy and that he wasn’t comfortable renting to me. I had to de-escalate things, and ended the conversation without getting him to replace my charger or agree to give more specific notice when he comes over. 
I know he needs to give notice before entering the building, but can he be on the porch or in the yard whenever he wants?

Edited on: Monday, September 23rd, 2013 9:30 pm

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