If a landlord wants to reserve storage space in a private condo don’t they have to spell it out in the lease?

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If a landlord wants to reserve storage space in a private condo don’t they have to spell it out in the lease?

This is the first time I have rented from a private owner instead of an apartment complex. We have run into several issues, but here are the 2 main ones: 1. They tried to sneak in a clause that we could use the washer and dryer but had to maintain them ourselves *after* we signed. We did not get the lease with this change until after the 3 day review window in NJ had closed. 2. We had issues with keys when we moved in. We didn’t need the storage unit attached to the property until this weekend. Our key didn’t work. They are now saying we don’t have access to it as the owners use it.

Asked on January 3, 2012 under Real Estate Law, New Jersey

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Whether or not the storage unit attached to the apartment that you leased is yours for access depends upon what the written lease states or does not state in that the lease controls the obligations owed to you by the landlord and vice versa in the absence of conflicting state law.

If the lease that you signed for the unit you occupy does not state that the storage unit attached to the property is not part of the rental then by the landlord's failure to mention this in the lease that you signed, presumably the storage space comes with the rental.

I would first call the landlord about the situation you have regarding the storage unit and follow up with the conversation with a letter memorializing the conversation. Keep a copy of the letter for future use and need.


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