Is it legal for a landlord to walk into your home unannounced if you are not there, and take photos of your walls and personal belongings?

She came in with maintenance while they were replacing a stove and took pictures of the walls and lamps and everything. There was no damage to the walls; the only damage was the stove and light fixture above the stove.

Asked on July 12, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Virginia


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Under the laws of all states in this country, if a landlord desires to enter the rented unit reasonable notice is required to be given the tenant, usually at least 24 hours notice. The only exception for no notice is when there is an emergency situation such as a fire or break in as examples.

If maintenance had a scheduled entry into the rental you have, then it was allowable for the landlord to appear as well unannounced to supervise the work done and take photographs under the laws of all states in this country.

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