Can an apartment complex deny me a carport if it agreed to give me one at the time that I signed the application and it was mentioned in the form?

UPDATED: May 2, 2012

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Can an apartment complex deny me a carport if it agreed to give me one at the time that I signed the application and it was mentioned in the form?

An apartment management agreed and mentioned to give me a 2 bedroom apartment with an assigned carport; the signed application form mentioned the apartment number and car port number. Later during the signing of the lease it denied to give me the carport as it was already taken by someone. So when I asked for a refund of my deposit, they denied saying they were holding the apartment. Is it legal to deny what they promised in the application form?

Asked on May 2, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Texas


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The key issue is whether or not you were told there was no car port prior to signing the lease. If you were not told prior to signing, you would seem to entitled to one or another of the following: a carport; to terminate the lease without penalty; or for monetary compensation (e.g. a reduction of the lease to an amount appropriate for this unit without a carport; or for the landlord to pay the cost of renting a nearby parking spot). That is because if the landlord (or its agent, such as a property manager) made represenations, or promises, to you that you would have a carport to induce you to sign the lease and you signed the lease in reasonable reliance therefore, then the landlord could be liable to you under either a theory of promissory estoppel or for fraud.

However, if you were told that no carport was in fact available prior to signing the lease but you went ahead and signed it anyway, your act of signing despite knowledge of the lack of a carport  could be taken as your agreement to rent the unit withou a carport. In this case, you would likely have no claim or cause of action.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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