Do I have some sort of right as a tenant to get clarification of my lease after I’ve signed it?

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Do I have some sort of right as a tenant to get clarification of my lease after I’ve signed it?

I’m having noise issues with the tenants downstairs, and after asking my property manager to interpret the noise section of the lease, she basically blew me off and is refusing to answer my question. Is this legal?

Asked on October 20, 2011 under Real Estate Law, Washington

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

One party to any contract--and that's what a lease is; a contract between landlord and tenant--is never under any legal obligation to interpret the contract for the other party or to answer any questions about it. If you are having difficulty understanding what the lease means and your rights under it, you need to bring it to an attorney to review--that's what lawyers do, after all: provide legal advice. The lawyer can also advise you of any other rights or options you have: it's possible the other tenant(s) are disturbing your right to quiet enjoyment, and that the landlord would have to respond on that basis; they may be violating local noice ordinances; etc. While it's not certain that you have recourse, there are several legal theories that *could* potentially provide you a basis for action.


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