Can a lease agreement prohibit gun possession?


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iceman7708
April 29, 2008, 03:20 AM
Hi there,

I recently signed a lease on my new apartment in Greeley, Colorado. One of the clauses in the lease prohibits me from posessing any firearms, bb guns, or switchblades. I was wondering if anyone knows of any Colorado laws or of any case law that might help me to fight this clause with the management. Any help would be greatly appreciated because I fell as though I have lost my 2nd ammendment right to bear arms. Also, don't we have the right to be safe in our homes as well as defend them?:cuss:

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Winchester 73
April 29, 2008, 03:28 AM
I may be wrong but by Colorado law ,your landlord cannot prohibit firearms other than by a trespass offense.
So concealed means deep concealment.
Colorodans will chip in for sure!Here they come now.See:

http://www.handgunlaw.us/documents/USOffLimitsA-M.pdf

Czar
April 29, 2008, 03:37 AM
I think that clause is in the standard contract everyone uses. I had the same clause in college and well, when it came to guns in my apartment in Ft. Collins (I miss that place) my roommate and I just didn't mention them to the managers...

For 2 years at the same apartment, it was never a problem.

Don't ask permission, don't tell them your intent. What they don't know won't hurt them cause trust me, they have no intention of making sure you're in compliance with every clause of your lease. As long as you're making your rent payment, and not destroying the structure, you'll be fine. I found that the two times I had to call maintainance, keeping the guns in the closet and shutting the door put them out of sight and out of mind.

.45&TKD
April 29, 2008, 04:03 AM
Next time you see a clause like that, either cross it out and initial the change, or don't sign it. That is not a customary clause.

PTK
April 29, 2008, 04:04 AM
Wow, I didn't expect that here in Colorado. Basically, as I understand the law, as soon as you sign that lease it's your home. They cannot strip basic rights from you for your home as long as you're not breaking laws.

Saying "well, you can't have guns here" would be viewed in the same legal light as "you can't have Asians here."

I agree with crossing it out and initialing, though I simply had my leasing agent remove it from the lease - they KNEW I was a gunsmith when I leased the apartment, of course I have guns.

evan price
April 29, 2008, 04:21 AM
First: It is completely legal for you to sign away any rights you choose to.

Second: An apartment, legally leased, becomes your domicile. All rights and such apply to that.

Third: If they want to screw with eviction proceedings over something like this, more power to them. What I do in the privacy of my own home, as long as it is not in and of itself illegal, is none of their G-D business.

Treo
April 29, 2008, 10:49 AM
I'm not sure what the exact legalities are, I think it would come down to wether or not the contract is enforceable.

My question is why did you sign a lease agreement you had no intention of abiding by?

Lichter
April 29, 2008, 11:45 AM
Freedom of Contract. You can sign away anything in a private contract. All that would happen if they found out is you would be in breech of your lease and who knows what sort of diabolical terms they have in the lease for that. Like ending your right of possession with the remainder of the $$$$ due

blackcash88
April 29, 2008, 03:47 PM
Just be careful and don't leave anything firearm related (including magazines/books) out should the maintenance guy come in or something. I don't know if it was legal or not, but when I lived in Texas, the maintenance guy would come in when I wasn't home with ZERO written notice of any kind to change the air conditioner filter or spray for bugs. Got busted for having an "illegal" cat, too. Pissed me off to no end that they could just come in unannounced. Good thing I didn't CCW back then because there's a very good chance they'd have been shot had they pulled that sh^t and I was home.

quatin
April 29, 2008, 04:20 PM
I don't see why not. They can ban pets...

blackcash88
April 29, 2008, 04:24 PM
I would claim that firearms are an integral part of my "peoples" heritage. If they still ban them, file a suit for discrimination just like how they can't ban blacks, indians, orientals, etc.

tntwatt
April 29, 2008, 04:29 PM
Contracts with non-disclosure clauses are enforced every day. They give up their freedom of speech over certain issues in order to settle some disagreement.
You have given up your 2a rights willingly in return for the apartment lease.
This clause releases the apartment owner of any liability if you shoot someone while residing in his his property. It is illegal for them to discriminate based on race,religion,sex, not gun ownership.

357WheelGun
April 29, 2008, 04:32 PM
It is legal. It may or may not be enforceable depending upon the laws of your state.

Chances are, however, that it is both legal and enforceable. The apartment, even though it is your "domicile" as someone else put it, is not your own property and as such is subject to any lawful restriction placed upon it by the property owner or the owner's designated agent. A "lawful restriction" is simply any restriction that is not expressly prohibited by law. The owner of private property is within his rights to specify that no firearms are allowed on that property.

The comparison of "you can't have guns" to "you can't have Asians" is invalid. Specifying race is expressly prohibited by the Fair Housing Act (and numerous State and Federal anti-discrimination laws) and is thus not a lawful restriction, even for private property (if that property is a business). Gun owners are not a protected class and the property owner's right to restrict access to his property takes precedence in that case.

That said, the potential legal ramifications from violation of that portion of your lease are simply that you may be evicted.

NGIB
April 29, 2008, 04:41 PM
I have been a landlord for over 10 years and have taken a lot of folks to court. The rules are pretty simple: If I put something in a lease - and you sign it - then I can enforce it.

All the legal eagles will jump in here and yell about 2A, but the bottom line is when you sign that contract you're legally bound by the terms.

This being said, I do not have this clause in my leases...

Brad Johnson
April 29, 2008, 04:44 PM
Can a lease agreement prohibit gun possession?

Yes. Anything can be a condition of a lease.

Can the condition be enforced? Yes. If the lease is voluntarily signed and there are no state or federal regulations counter to the prohibition then it is fully enforceable.

Brad

NavyLCDR
April 29, 2008, 05:11 PM
It is in no way shape or form an infringement upon your 2A rights. You signed the lease. You agreed to it's terms. You are bound to live up to the conditions in the lease you signed. How did the landlord take away anything from you? You're the one who agreed to abide by those conditions.

The only thing they can do is evict you, it is a civil matter and not a criminal matter so long as all the guns are owned legally.

ArmedBear
April 29, 2008, 05:11 PM
Don't say a word. Keep your guns out of sight. Clean them with something other than Hoppes. (Yes, a neighbor did find out I had a gun because she smelled Hoppes No 9. She didn't give a crap about it, but she knew I was cleaning a gun. That smell is distinctive and travels pretty far.)

If you pay your rent on time and don't cause the landlord any grief, he won't give a crap what you do in your apartment -- as long as he doesn't see it or hear about it. In fact, he probably won't want to know.

That's a message from the real world. Unless your landlord wants you out of the place, he just doesn't want to see or hear about your guns.

The LAST thing you should do is go and bring this up with management.

It's probably enforceable, but nobody will want to enforce it. Don't give them a reason. And the worst thing that can happen is that you're thrown out.

blackcash88
April 29, 2008, 05:24 PM
Hmmm. Never thought about the smell from gun cleaning supplies. Simple Green works well from what I've heard. Never used it myself, but it won't have a distinct "gun oil" odor.

TwitchALot
April 29, 2008, 05:33 PM
I recently signed a lease on my new apartment in Greeley, Colorado. One of the clauses in the lease prohibits me from posessing any firearms, bb guns, or switchblades. I was wondering if anyone knows of any Colorado laws or of any case law that might help me to fight this clause with the management. Any help would be greatly appreciated because I fell as though I have lost my 2nd ammendment right to bear arms. Also, don't we have the right to be safe in our homes as well as defend them?

Why did you sign the lease if you had an objection that you did not want to live with on it?

I think that clause is in the standard contract everyone uses. I had the same clause in college and well, when it came to guns in my apartment in Ft. Collins (I miss that place) my roommate and I just didn't mention them to the managers...

I just recently found an apartment I'm going to need for next year in California (San Diego Area). There is no such clause about firearms (which I made quite sure of), and the only thing on it is supposedly the stuff mandated/stated by California law regarding housing. I'll have to check that, but the point is that there aren't very many restrictions at all, and certainly none regarding firearms. Remember- San Diego, California.

Wow, I didn't expect that here in Colorado. Basically, as I understand the law, as soon as you sign that lease it's your home. They cannot strip basic rights from you for your home as long as you're not breaking laws.

It is not your "home" unless you agree to the lease. If that lease has stipulations you don't abide by, technically, you don't have permission to "own" the property and it is not your "home."

NavyLCDR
April 29, 2008, 05:38 PM
Now it would be illegal if the clause was not in the lease that you signed and THEN the landlord tried to add that condition later.

ArmedBear
April 29, 2008, 05:40 PM
Remember- San Diego, California.


LOL

I take it you don't live here now...

What part of town you moving to?

NASCAR_MAN
April 29, 2008, 05:44 PM
Shake thier hands, smile in thier faces and be agreeable - a real nice boy. Then, simply ignore thier stupid rules on gun possession, but keep your guns out of sight. It's not illegal - it's simply a civil matter.

NASCAR


PS Learn how to "lie-to-power" - and do so elegantly, for it is as more important for your protection than packing.

blackcash88
April 29, 2008, 05:49 PM
I knew a guy when I was in the Navy who just crossed that part out on the lease. They never said anything about it because they probably just filed it away and never even looked at it. In his defense, his "pink" (or whatever) carbon copy had the crossed out marks transferred so it's not like he just crossed out his copy. :evil:

GunTech
April 29, 2008, 05:51 PM
Did you read it before you signed it? I wouldn't sign such a lease.

Send you landlord a certified letter informing him that as he required you to give up your firearms as a term of the lease, that you were holding him personally responsible for your safety and security since the conditions of the lease deprived you of your ability to defend yourself.

TwitchALot
April 29, 2008, 05:55 PM
LOL

I take it you don't live here now...

What part of town you moving to?

Going to college here. Not much choice. :( Just found an apartment with a good lease that would be convenient for me as far as getting to school goes.

mbt2001
April 29, 2008, 06:10 PM
http://crime.about.com/od/gunlawsbystate/p/gunlaws_co.htm

It is unlawful to carry a firearm concealed on or about one's person without a permit, except for a person in their dwelling, place of business, or on property owned or controlled by him or her.

I am not sure what they could do to you... Since it IS your "dwelling" I don't think that the police can arrest you, BUT you did VIOLATE the lease agreement, so my thought is that they can evict you, but you have rights when it comes to eviction... So I GUESS it is a civil matter not a criminal matter.

Maybe a lawyer (in da house) can clear this up a little.

ArmedBear
April 29, 2008, 06:29 PM
Twitch, guns are rather popular here. This ain't San Francisco. I have to call ahead for a reservation, to shoot at the range by my house.

I've never seen a lease agreement that said anything about guns.

chrismc410
April 29, 2008, 06:54 PM
I've always asked if firearms are allowed for every place I've rented before any papers are signed. In some of them, the answer has been no and as stated you don't have to sign and can take your business and deposit money elsewhere. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure in this situation. It's best you ask before you sign anything, if having firearms in the rental is not an issue and the money is right, go for it, if not, you have the right to refuse to sign and take your money and business elsewhere. It's inconveient, but beats the alternative of eviction if found out.

I don't know if the clause is enforceable or not, but if you ask and they say no, the issue can be avoided by not renting there in the first place.

Just my opinion

Blackbeard
April 29, 2008, 07:10 PM
I'm going to go out on a limb and say that if you pay your rent on time and don't bother people, your landlord won't evict you even if he does learn you have guns. He could, but why would he want to?

blackcash88
April 29, 2008, 07:13 PM
Because he's a bed wetting, pillow biting idiotic libtard and/or doesn't want law suits against him if a shooting does occur on the property.

glockman19
April 29, 2008, 07:18 PM
While you can put anything in a contract I believe it is uninforceable.

ArmedBear
April 29, 2008, 07:22 PM
http://johnfenzel.typepad.com/john_fenzels_blog/images/2007/03/14/the3monkeys.jpg

ronwill
April 29, 2008, 07:28 PM
Best thing to do is contact a local attorney. Shouldn't cost that much just to find out. Personally, I think there may be problems since you signed a contract voluntarily. Good luck.

Valkman
April 29, 2008, 07:41 PM
Whatever you do, don't have an ND! :)

MD_Willington
April 29, 2008, 07:49 PM
There is a rental agency in Pullman WA (WSU is here) that had a similar thing in the lease agreement... I simply crossed out that part of the agreement and asked them if they knew if it was legal or not for them to have that in the agreement, a year later it was time to sign a new lease and guess what... that part of the agreement was removed, turned out a bunch of people did what I did, they simply crossed it out before signing...

HankB
April 29, 2008, 08:03 PM
I've always asked if firearms are allowed for every place I've rented before any papers are signed. In some of them, the answer has been no . . .If there's no explicit prohibition in the lease agreement (you DO read these before signing, don't you?) then why draw their attention to it, and possibly create an issue where there is none? :confused:

F4GIB
April 29, 2008, 08:14 PM
Such as lease provision is not enforceable in Minnesota.
Minn. Stat. sec. 624.714, subdivision 17(e).

brighamr
April 29, 2008, 08:14 PM
If you buy a car from ford and sign the warranty with a clause "the owner cannot keep a gun in this car or it voids this warranty" then your screwed. Always read the fine print and don't sign anything with a BS clause like this.

in you current situation? As long as you don't make a deal of it, your landlord will likely never know. Even if he/she does find out, the worst case scenario is that you get evicted.

mljdeckard
April 29, 2008, 08:21 PM
Probably legal. Probably enforceable. I would go with armedbear's counsel. THEY CAN'T ENFORCE IT IF THEY NEVER HAVE REASON TO.

NGIB
April 29, 2008, 08:27 PM
A lease can't prohibit you from owning guns, it can make it a condition that they cannot be brought onto or kept on the property. Violation of this or any clause of the lease leaves you in a breach condition and the landlord has various remedies including eviction.

In the same vein I've had people bring pets in without paying the pet deposit, when I see it they're gone. I'm not an ass, it costs me money to have the place cleaned and treated after a pet owner lives there. I also have to repair the chewed doors and cabinets.

I kind of take offense to all of those that advocate "screw the landlord" - that's me. If it weren't for us, where would renters live. I am expected to live up to the terms of the lease - so should the tenants if they sign the lease. Love the blustering though...

archigos
April 29, 2008, 08:57 PM
My landlord threatened to put such a clause into my lease agreement, but I informed him that I couldn't ethically sign something with that in it. He asked if I'd verbally commit to not have guns in the house, and I told him that "I would not as long as my roommates are uncomfortable with it." Luckily, only one of my roommates is opposed to it now - he's one of those "violence is never the solution" types.
I just don't let him know that there may be firearms there - and if he finds them and decides to evict me, great! I want to get out of the contract early anyways.

TwitchALot
April 29, 2008, 10:11 PM
Twitch, guns are rather popular here. This ain't San Francisco. I have to call ahead for a reservation, to shoot at the range by my house.

I've never seen a lease agreement that said anything about guns.

Well, other places certainly have it worse than people in San Diego do, but San Diego County isn't exactly at the top of the list regarding CCW's issued. While SD seems to have quite a few ranges (which one do you shoot at?), it's not exactly at the top of the list of most gun friendly areas of California. In the grand scheme of things, compared to freer states and areas, San Diego county is certainly not high on the list of, "places to be" for gun owners (and neither is California, mind you). :)

brickeyee
April 30, 2008, 10:06 AM
If landlords in the area commonly use these types of clauses and they are not in violation of a state (or other) law (like Minnesota) I would just ignore it.

You are not going to cause any property damage (like a pet can).

The landlord's right to enter the property is already restricted to emergencies without notice and with notice for non-emergency maintenance.
These clauses are the exceptions to the 'peaceable possession and occupancy' that a lease contract grants.

The landlord CANNOT conduct searches of your private possessions, so keep guns locked up and out of sight and you should be fine.

I am a landlord with a couple of single family houses and would never use such a clause, but being in Virginia I am not going to be held liable for the actions of a tenant anyway.

Brad Johnson
April 30, 2008, 10:55 AM
For those who promote the "lie and deceit" method (i.e. sign the lease but keep guns anyway) realize that you are setting yourself up for a potential long-term problem.

Future landlords, good ones anyway, will check references for prior tenancy as well as a credit report and possible criminal records check. If you were evicted for lease violations you will not get a recommendation from that landlord. If the police assisted in the eviction it will show up on the police records. And chances are that you, as the evictee and being obstinate about it, will probably end up being stuck with some charge beyond what your security deposit will cover and it will be reported on your credit history. So, no recomendation, a police report, and a non-payment on your credit history. And you think that any future landlord is going to hand over a key? No way, sparky.

In other words it's a stupid, dumb, idiotic suggestion. Especially when there's probably an apartment complex right up the street who's lease agreement doesn't have a firearms clause. Rent there instead.

Brad

blackcash88
April 30, 2008, 12:53 PM
The landlord CANNOT conduct searches of your private possessions, so keep guns locked up and out of sight and you should be fine.

That does NOT mean that they or their maintenance types won't go through your stuff when they have the run of the place, though.

brickeyee
April 30, 2008, 05:26 PM
If you were evicted for lease violations...

You have to actually get caught.

It is a way to avoid someone going after the landlord if a shooting occurs.
the landlord will point to the lease clause and say he took reasonable steps.

There are a lot of steps in an eviction, and if you are stupid enough to let it get to the point of involving the police you probably deserve the trouble you will have caused yourself.

The landlord will have to serve notice you have violate the lease and you should have plenty of warning if you are dumb enough to get caught.

archigos
April 30, 2008, 07:11 PM
Its not really safe to make sweeping generalizations about evictions and laws regarding leasing - they vary greatly between states. Some require a breach of contract, like you mentioned, for eviction to occur. Others, like mine, allow landlords to evict tenants with little or no reason.
Bottom line is - if your guns are more important to you than a temporary residence, forget about whatever idiotic clause your landlord put in the agreement. Otherwise, don't sign such foolishness, or abide by it.
Whatever choice you make, you have the risk of facing some unfortunate result.

steveno
April 30, 2008, 07:19 PM
you will probably need the gun living in Greeley so move to one of the smaller towns just outside of Greeley. try Windsor ( I lived there for 21 years) , Milliken or Johnstown. don't venture to far into the northside of Greeley around the fairgrounds at night

AndrewGWU
April 30, 2008, 07:22 PM
That is very common in large apartment complexes whose key tennents are college students.

TS537
April 30, 2008, 09:19 PM
In MN a landlord cannot prohibit you from having a firearm that you are legally entitled to own, but again, as people more lawyer-iffic than myself have already said, nothing prohibits you from signing away your rights if you are so inclined. Really, your landlord just wants to have an excuse to evict criminals with minimal cause/notice/hassle. Don't attract attention or cause problems and it will be a non-issue.

We are prohibited from having a cat where I live. We deal with this by not allowing the landlord in the house when no-one is there (you should have that right, too) and shutting the cat in a closet for a few minutes when repairs are needed. Don't ask, don't tell. It's worked for five and a half years so far...:neener:

brickeyee
May 1, 2008, 01:50 PM
Its not really safe to make sweeping generalizations about evictions and laws regarding leasing - they vary greatly between states.

But in EVERY state the landlord must give notice according to the terms of the lease or superseding state law.

schloe
May 1, 2008, 02:49 PM
yes, a contract can prohibit whatever it wants. it is your decision whether or not to sign it.

Brad Johnson
May 1, 2008, 05:39 PM
You have to actually get caught.

So anything is okay as long as you get away with it?

Brad

blackcash88
May 1, 2008, 05:59 PM
Pretty much. One apartment complex I lived in forbade overnight guests. Uh, yeah, try telling THAT to a horny, young Navy flight student in Corpus Christi bringing God knows what home from Booters. :evil:

ArmedBear
May 1, 2008, 06:04 PM
No.

It's okay whether or not you get away with it.

Some things are morally wrong. However, possessing a firearm harms nobody. It's not wrong. Sometimes, it can get you into trouble, and you may choose to follow a law or rule, because it's not worth the cost to you. I doubt anyone here thinks it's morally wrong to have a gun in your pocket if you don't hurt anyone, but most of us won't do it without a permit because we don't want to deal with the consequences of being caught carrying illegally.

As far as the lease is concerned, consider the consequences and the likelihood of there being any. Decide what the risk is, and whether you are willing to accept it. The landlord is doing the same thing; he has no moral investment in the lease agreement, either.

It's hard to live a life with any degree of peace and liberty, if you don't bother separating out the real stuff from the bull****. So much in our society is left unsaid; you have to sort out what really matters.

Follow your moral code when it comes to any act that actually has an impact on another person (or yourself).

brickeyee
May 1, 2008, 09:31 PM
Quote:
You have to actually get caught.
So anything is okay as long as you get away with it?

Brad

Pretty poor straw man.

TwitchALot
May 1, 2008, 10:01 PM
No.

It's okay whether or not you get away with it.

Some things are morally wrong. However, possessing a firearm harms nobody. It's not wrong. Sometimes, it can get you into trouble, and you may choose to follow a law or rule, because it's not worth the cost to you. I doubt anyone here thinks it's morally wrong to have a gun in your pocket if you don't hurt anyone, but most of us won't do it without a permit because we don't want to deal with the consequences of being caught carrying illegally.

As far as the lease is concerned, consider the consequences and the likelihood of there being any. Decide what the risk is, and whether you are willing to accept it. The landlord is doing the same thing; he has no moral investment in the lease agreement, either.

It's hard to live a life with any degree of peace and liberty, if you don't bother separating out the real stuff from the bull****. So much in our society is left unsaid; you have to sort out what really matters.

Follow your moral code when it comes to any act that actually has an impact on another person (or yourself).

Is making an agreement (a signed contract in this case, mind you) and then not following through with your end of the bargain wrong?

mio
May 1, 2008, 10:08 PM
im not a lawyer but i would think that the home is the private property of the person you lease it from and that they have the right to ban anything that they want to as long as its in the lease that you read and signed.

i see the arguement that once you sign the lease it becomes your domicile however you signed a leagelly binding contract that specificaly prohibited guns. if i were you id look for a loophole out of the lease and move.

Autolycus
May 1, 2008, 10:15 PM
Originally posted by ArmedBear: No.

It's okay whether or not you get away with it.

Some things are morally wrong. However, possessing a firearm harms nobody. It's not wrong. Sometimes, it can get you into trouble, and you may choose to follow a law or rule, because it's not worth the cost to you. I doubt anyone here thinks it's morally wrong to have a gun in your pocket if you don't hurt anyone, but most of us won't do it without a permit because we don't want to deal with the consequences of being caught carrying illegally.

As far as the lease is concerned, consider the consequences and the likelihood of there being any. Decide what the risk is, and whether you are willing to accept it. The landlord is doing the same thing; he has no moral investment in the lease agreement, either.

It's hard to live a life with any degree of peace and liberty, if you don't bother separating out the real stuff from the bull****. So much in our society is left unsaid; you have to sort out what really matters.

Follow your moral code when it comes to any act that actually has an impact on another person (or yourself).
__________________ So I take it you are for the legalization of drugs? If my meth lab harms nobody then it should be ok right?

Brad Johnson
May 2, 2008, 04:00 PM
You have to actually get caught.
So anything is okay as long as you get away with it?

Brad

Pretty poor straw man.

Trying to change the topic instead of answering the question is what politicians do when they get caught in a corner.

I'll ask again.

So, anything is okay as long as you get away with it?

Brad

blackcash88
May 2, 2008, 04:02 PM
In this case, yes.

ArmedBear
May 2, 2008, 04:04 PM
So I take it you are for the legalization of drugs? If my meth lab harms nobody then it should be ok right?

You actually think you're making a point here?:rolleyes:

ArmedBear
May 2, 2008, 04:06 PM
Is making an agreement (a signed contract in this case, mind you) and then not following through with your end of the bargain wrong?

Hey, you want to dig up reasons to feel bad, go ahead. Far be it from me to stop you.

Autolycus
May 2, 2008, 05:59 PM
Well so long as it does not harm anyone, right Armedbear?

tube_ee
May 2, 2008, 06:08 PM
On the state of contract law in your State.

Yes, you can sign away any rights you want to, but in many jurisdictions, your signing does not create any legal obligations. For example, in many states (California is one), a "hold harmless" clause is completely unenforceable. You can sign it, and if you suffer a loss, and sue, your case cannot be dismissed simply because you signed a "will not sue" clause.

Many other examples exist. For example, I'm certain that there are jurisdictions where a provision restricting the signor's right of free speech is unenforceable. Remember that contracts are purely a creation of the law, so the law can place whatever conditions that the lawmakers want on the terms of such contracts.

In any case, if you're really concerned about it, contact an attorney in your state. Preferably one who specializes in real estate law. If he or she is knowledgeable about firearms laws in your State, so much the better.

Bottom line, you need specific legal advice from a licensed attorney, not a bunch of speculation from 'da intertubes.

--Shannon

Pat-inCO
May 2, 2008, 08:29 PM
Once you signed the lease, you agreed to it. :eek:

If you had crossed it out and had him initial it, you would have maintained your rights. You voluntarily relinquished them.

Master Blaster
May 2, 2008, 09:53 PM
They put it in you agreed to it, unless there is a law that says its unenforceable they landlord can enforce it and file for eviction.
Once you wind up in court in front of a judge for any eviction proceeding, he's going to be looking for an equitable arraingement, usually that would be payment of rent, payment for damages etc. So most likely the judge will ask you to remove your firearms as a condition of occupancy. He will also ask the landlord if you have destroyed anything with them or created a nusience, and if the answer is no, he may suggest to the Landlord the lease be modified.

But if the land lord insists on eviction and you refuse to remove the firearms, you will be evicted.

I would ignore the clause and be a good tenant for the term of the lease, when renewal comes up, cross out the offending clause, before you sign the lease. If you have been a good tenant, and paid rent in full on time most likely the landlord will agree.

I owned 6 rental properties for about 12 years and my concern was no damage, rent on time, and consideration for the other tenants.
I was always happy to have a good tenant renew, since it meant I didnt have to paint, advertise, show, and take a chance with an unknown new tenant.

JMHO YMMV

Soodonim
May 3, 2008, 12:41 AM
It's on that they put it on there when it is not customary in your area. But if you are signing the lease, you are agreeing to be bound by the covenant. You could negotiate with them, but I doubt they would be willing to; they put it in there in the first place. All they can do is evict you, but I doubt they would, even if they somehow found out. All you have to do is be just smart enough to not let them find out, considering they aren't looking for a gun, it shouldnt be too hard.

Dstoerm
May 3, 2008, 02:16 AM
Can the condition be enforced? Yes. If the lease is voluntarily signed and there are no state or federal regulations counter to the prohibition then it is fully enforceable.

I belive the Constitution can and would be considered a Federal regulation:

..The right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

That said, if the landlord can violate your 2nd Amdnt. rights, then could they not also place a clause in the lease staing that you must allow people in the military to stay with you for free? (Third Amndt) or even better a clause stating that you cannot petition your congressman from your apartment (1st Amndt)?

Just because a clause is in a signed contract does not make it enforceable. Clauses or stipulations in a contract that are illegal at signing are inherently unenforceable, such as a clause that might state that the lesee agrees to force his/her 12 year old child to have sex with the lessor.

Just cross the illegal offending clause from the contract, get initials, then sign. Who in thier right mind would waive thier right to self defense?

RNB65
May 3, 2008, 02:24 AM
My advice: If you like the place, sign the lease, pay your rent on time, don't make enough noise to upset the neighbors, and ignore the clause. Keep your guns hidden in a lockable cabinet where they can't be seen. The worst that can happen is you get evicted if they discover you're violating the lease. Big deal.
-

Cosmoline
May 3, 2008, 02:44 AM
Unless there's a particular code in your state outlawing these provisions they're enforceable. But not too many landlords go to FED proceedings on paying, quiet tenants. You take your chances of course, but violating idiotic lease terms like this isn't immoral. It's annoying having to act like a criminal and sneak your iron around though so I'd suggest planning on a move when you get a chance.

So, anything is okay as long as you get away with it?

We're talking about breaking a lease term, not a law. Contracts are violated all the time for good and bad reasons. In this case I can think of many good reasons for violating this idiotic provision. I'm sure I have violated similar provisions over the years. I won't lose any sleep over it. Esp. considering some of the worthless freaks I've had as landlords!

I kind of take offense to all of those that advocate "screw the landlord" - that's me.

Understand that there are many of your group who richly deserve a few efficient breaches as we lawyers like to call them.

AirForceShooter
May 3, 2008, 10:03 AM
How would your Landlord ever know??

AFS

357WheelGun
May 3, 2008, 10:39 AM
I belive the Constitution can and would be considered a Federal regulation:

..The right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

That said, if the landlord can violate your 2nd Amdnt. rights, then could they not also place a clause in the lease staing that you must allow people in the military to stay with you for free? (Third Amndt) or even better a clause stating that you cannot petition your congressman from your apartment (1st Amndt)?

First of all, the Constitution limits what the Government can do. It does NOT limit what a person can do with his own property.

The lease is an agreement by the landlord to allow you to occupy his property pursuant to the terms specified in the lease provided such terms are enforceable per current legal statutes. The lease terms do not prohibit the lessee's ownership of firearms; they merely prohibit the keeping of those arms on property that belongs to the landlord.

A lease absolutely could specify that the landlord can choose to board soldiers in your unit with no remuneration to you because the unit is the landlord's property and he can do as he pleases with it. A lease can also specify that you cannot engage in political activity within the landlord's property, in fact, some leases do prohibit placing signs for candidates on the property or in the windows of the unit.

What people fail to realise is that an apartment does not belong to the lessee. The apartment is the property of the lessor and as such, the lessor's right to restrict access to his property as he sees fit trumps anything else unless specifically exempted in the applicable legal code. The lessee remains free to engage in prohibited activities as long as the lessee is not on the lessor's property.

X-Rap
May 3, 2008, 10:44 AM
I look at it from a Libertarian view, if someone owns property and others want to rent the owner should have his right to make what ever regulation he chooses. This would include lifestyle, permisible activities, race, pets, kids, number of adults, you name it including firearms.The other side of the equation is no one is forcing anyone to sign a lease. The same should go for the sale of property, if its to restrictive don't buy, if nobody buys the regulations will relax.
I feel the same regarding employment.

Blackbeard
May 3, 2008, 11:08 AM
Just because he can evict you doesn't mean he will. If you pay rent on time, don't damage the unit and don't cause him any headaches, he's got no reason to evict you.

brickeyee
May 3, 2008, 12:23 PM
Trying to change the topic instead of answering the question is what politicians do when they get caught in a corner.

I'll ask again.

So, anything is okay as long as you get away with it?

It is still a pretty poor straw man.
We are NOT discussing anything is okay", we are discussing having a gun in (possible) violation of a lease.

This is none of the landlords business.

Brad Johnson
May 3, 2008, 05:18 PM
We are NOT discussing anything is okay", we are discussing having a gun in (possible) violation of a lease.

You exact words, posted by you, April 30th, 2008, 04:56 PM

If you were evicted for lease violations...

You have to actually get caught.

Your statement is a blanket one, advocating the intentional breaking of a binding and legally enforceable contract that was entered into voluntarily and with full knowledge. In other words, you are stating, in very plain terms, that you don't care about living up to your obligations. You only care about not getting caught. And we're not talking about a "possible" violation of a lease. We're talking about signing a lease knowing full will you intend to violate it.

I ask again,

Anything is okay as long as you get away with it?

This is none of the landlords business.

It's his place, it's his business. If you want to rent his place then you play by his rules. To advocate otherwise, especially by subterfuge, and justify it as being okay as long as the landlord doesn't find out, is to advocate irresponsible, anti-social, and potentially criminal behavior.

If you ever wanted to know why people consider gun owners a little shady sometimes, some of the comments in this thread are a perfect example.

Brad

Johannes_Paulsen
May 3, 2008, 05:28 PM
Hi there,

I recently signed a lease on my new apartment in Greeley, Colorado. One of the clauses in the lease prohibits me from posessing any firearms, bb guns, or switchblades. I was wondering if anyone knows of any Colorado laws or of any case law that might help me to fight this clause with the management. Any help would be greatly appreciated because I fell as though I have lost my 2nd ammendment right to bear arms. Also, don't we have the right to be safe in our homes as well as defend them?


The Second Amendment is a restriction on the federal government, not individuals. (As of this point in time, the Sup. Ct. has NOT incorporated it via the Fourteenth Amendment to apply to the States.) Therefore, it is not possible for a private individual (i.e., someone not operating under color of government authority) to deny your second amendment rights. The only part of the Constitution that specifically limits activities by a private individual is the Thirteenth Amendment, which outlaws slavery.

I do not know if this clause would be enforceable under Colorado law, so you would be best off consulting an attorney licensed to practice in that State...but I can't see any reason why it wouldn't be. My advice to you would be to take your business elsewhere at the earliest opportunity, making sure management knows why you're leaving. There's nothing forcing you to live there, no?

bogie
May 3, 2008, 05:30 PM
Brad, that's also assuming that the people making those comments are actually gun owners, and not folks assigned to rouse the rabble on this forum.

I swear some of the comments I've seen lately from some newer folks could be straight out of the Brady playbook.

RNB65
May 3, 2008, 06:28 PM
To advocate otherwise, especially by subterfuge, and justify it as being okay as long as the landlord doesn't find out, is to advocate irresponsible, anti-social, and potentially criminal behavior.


I'm afraid that I have to politely disagree with your assessment. Nothing suggested has been remotely illegal as long as the OP can legally own firearms. And apartment lease agreements are filled with page after page of lawyer mandated CYA clauses intended to protect the property owner from civil liability. I have no problem with violating a few of those lease clauses if I consider them to be unreasonable and I'm not creating a safety hazard in doing so.
-

blackcash88
May 3, 2008, 06:49 PM
+1 if it's not illegal. One lease said I couldn't store more than X amount of flammable liquids in my apartment. Screw 'em. I flew R/C aircraft and had multiple gallons of fuel ranging from 15-30% nitro. :what: :evil:

Brad Johnson
May 3, 2008, 08:56 PM
I swear some of the comments I've seen lately from some newer folks could be straight out of the Brady playbook.

I noticed that, too. Makes you shake your head sometimes.


Nothing suggested has been remotely illegal as long as the OP can legally own firearms. And apartment lease agreements are filled with page after page of lawyer mandated CYA clauses intended to protect the property owner from civil liability.

Correct, but it also means that clause is a legally enforceable condition willingly signed and agreed to by both parties. It was known to be part of the agreement before the agreement was signed. Not abiding by those terms because it's a "CYA clause" is selfish justification for not playing by the rules you knowingly agreed to.

I have no problem with violating a few of those lease clauses if I consider them to be unreasonable and I'm not creating a safety hazard in doing so.

Violating a lease clause is, in essence, breaking a promise. Except in this case the promise is in writing. Making a promise knowing that it isn't going to kept is called someting. A lie.

Brad

Blackbeard
May 3, 2008, 09:52 PM
Violating a lease clause is, in essence, breaking a promise. Except in this case the promise is in writing. Making a promise knowing that it isn't going to kept is called someting. A lie.

This is like having a contract with your cable TV operator that you won't wear brown shoes while watching their network. So what if you do? Are they going to cut off your cable for wearing brown shoes? Did you "lie" to the cable company knowing that you've got a closet full of hush puppies?

The only remedies at law available to the landlord are monetary damages or eviction. What damages is he going to show by you having firearms in your apartment? He could choose to void the contract and evict you, but why would he? Unless it's a rent-controlled building, he'd only be costing himself more money.

I'm not swearing before God when I sign the rental agreement. I don't sign my name in blood. I don't have to commit seppuku at dawn for breaking the terms of the lease.

Brad Johnson
May 3, 2008, 10:03 PM
I'm not swearing before God when I sign the rental agreement. I don't sign my name in blood. I don't have to commit seppuku at dawn for breaking the terms of the lease.

But you did give your word, in writing even, knowing that you intended to break it. A lie by another name is still a lie.

Brad

Cosmoline
May 3, 2008, 11:22 PM
his right to make what ever regulation he chooses

Generally speaking, he does, but the problem arises when he asks the STATE to use its power to enforce his personal law, in the form of an FED action or other suit.

Cosmoline
May 3, 2008, 11:29 PM
To advocate otherwise, especially by subterfuge, and justify it as being okay as long as the landlord doesn't find out, is to advocate irresponsible, anti-social, and potentially criminal behavior.

Who is suggesting that tenants violate the law? You seem to be confusing boilerplate in a lease with the law. Those are two very different things. There's nothing "anti-social" about breaking foolish lease terms. Nor is it a "lie" to sign an adhesion contract knowing you won't abide by some of its terms. These are not freely negotiated contracts.

I would have no more qualms about violating anti-gun provisions in a lease than violating "no Mormon" clauses or "no Jew" clauses. The lease term is itself morally repugnant, and represents the same effort by landlords to control the personal lives of tenants as the other referenced terms. And if you're not free to eliminate it from the document, you can at least undermine it. Any landlord who would put such a term in the lease deserves a lot worse than a harmless breach.


I ask again,

Anything is okay as long as you get away with it?

Boyo, people have answered this multiple times. Not everything is okay as long as you can get away with it. Many things, such as setting up a meth lab, are illegal, immoral and pose an imminent safety risk to your neighbors. But bringing firearms into your own home in spite of lease terms (or for that matter restrictive CC&R's) is neither illegal nor morally repugnant. It's possible a landlord or homeowners association (in the case of CC&R's) will take steps against you if you violate the terms. But it's unlikely and if it comes to that you can always leave.

To use another example, breaking an anti-firearm lease provision or property covenant is no different from buying gun parts using pay pal or ebay. Breaking an unjust clause isn't morally wrong. It isn't even illegal. It just angers the jerk who wrote the term, but that makes it all the better.

So now you can stop repeating the same question.

But you did give your word, in writing even, knowing that you intended to break it. A lie by another name is still a lie.


I have no problem lying to some anti-gun landlord trying to subvert longstanding cultural traditions with lease provisions. Such a person does not have any right to my respect, nor do they have any right to know if I have firearms--let alone to force me to disarm. I'd personally avoid renting from them but sometimes you have little choice. A college kid just starting out, for example.

Or for example if I moved into some lower 48 neighborhood with anti-gun CC&R's on the property books, I wouldn't see anything unethical about moving my firearms there. Indeed if you own property you ought to take a look at your CC&R's. Folks would be shocked to see all the provisions they're supposed to be abiding by. Many older neighborhoods still have covenants banning blacks! I suspect you could find some back east banning Irishmen.

Blackbeard
May 4, 2008, 08:53 AM
If you ever wanted to know why people consider gun owners a little shady sometimes, some of the comments in this thread are a perfect example.

I suppose all the pet owners who violate their leases by keeping a cat are also considered "shady" sometimes. At least there's a valid reason for banning pets (noise, smell, damage to the unit). Unless you shoot holes in the walls there's no ill effects from having guns in your unit.

stevelyn
May 4, 2008, 01:21 PM
I don't see why not. They can ban pets...

Apples and oranges. Pets are live creatures with a brain and instincts of their own, capable of acting independently of their owners.

Guns are inanimate objects that'll just sit there until you pick it up and place it into operation.

cassandrasdaddy
May 4, 2008, 03:38 PM
"Generally speaking, he does, but the problem arises when he asks the STATE to use its power to enforce his personal law, in the form of an FED action or other suit.


for some reason you imagine a landlord should be denied recourse through the courts? why?

rbernie
May 4, 2008, 03:55 PM
And apartment lease agreements are filled with page after page of lawyer mandated CYA clauses intended to protect the property owner from civil liability.And I imagine that they will continue to be, so long as nobody actually does anything silly like COMPLAIN or suggest that they'd vote with their feet rather that sign an obviously rancid contract. When a landlord starts getting the feeling that their income stream may be perturbed by clauses that are largely throw-away, maybe that clause eventually gets thrown away.

There is a subtle war on against the gun culture every day, portraying gunnies as a danger to those around them. In my opinion, if we don't start actually participating in push-back against the negative stereotypes of gun owners, in another generation we won't HAVE a gun culture.

ArmedBear
May 4, 2008, 09:59 PM
A few followups on Cosmoline's wise and accurate post.

There's nothing "anti-social" about breaking foolish lease terms.

What the hell is "anti-social" anyway? That's got to be one of the silliest accusations I've ever seen.

"Anti-social" means going to an underground poetry reading or playing video games instead of going to the prom.

And "illegal"? There's nothing illegal about doing something that's not against the law.

Furthermore, what people don't seem to "get" is that the landlord is also "lying." The whole thing is a lie, and grownups understand this.

The landlord really wants to agree to a few things:

1. You pay the rent on time so he can pay his own bills.

2. He never hears about you from other tenants, unless it's "What a considerate, polite, respectful guy you found for Apartment Q!"

3. You don't sue him, or give cause anyone else to sue him.

That's about it. Everything else is inherently disingenuous. Sure, as a libertarian, one might figure that the landlord can stipulate what sex positions you can use if you want to rent his bedroom. But as a grownup, I know that, unless he is certifiably insane, the landlord doesn't give a ****.

There's a two-way understanding here, about what is really being promised, and by whom. Our court system and the boilerplate leases people use may cause different words to be used, but it's a lot of BS. The real agreement, understood by both sides, is as above.

Sometimes, I think that there are people here, people who are clearly intelligent and articulate, who know about as much about the real, adult world and what goes on in it as if they were born sometime last March. I don't get it.

brickeyee
May 4, 2008, 10:38 PM
Your statement is a blanket one, advocating the intentional breaking of a binding and legally enforceable contract that was entered into voluntarily and with full knowledge. In other words, you are stating, in very plain terms, that you don't care about living up to your obligations. You only care about not getting caught. And we're not talking about a "possible" violation of a lease. We're talking about signing a lease knowing full will you intend to violate it.

I ask again,

Anything is okay as long as you get away with it?

The discussion is about a particular clause in a lease that may or may not comport with applicable state law (and I am not going to try and research, the OP can hire a lawyer if he thinks the clause may be invalid).

Try and confine your thinking to this idea of a lease clause involving a prohibition of firearms and you will make more sense.

We are not discussing things that may actually cause damage to the landlord like pets or excessive occupants.

You are a perfect example of why attorneys (and I am married to one) hate even trying to give answers without being paid $$ to exhaustively research the issue at question.

iceman7708
May 7, 2008, 01:17 AM
Thanks everybody for responding. I think that I will just keep my firearms in a small safe. Both of my roommates are fine with it and they too will be posessing firearms. My landlord has no legal right to search my personal property and if he ever asks what's in the safe i'll politely tell him to **** off.

Kentak
May 7, 2008, 11:10 PM
This exact topic was the subject of a hotly debated thread a few weeks ago. While a lot of folks expressed deep resentment of landlords trying to deny "2nd Amendment rights," it's not really a Constitutional issue. It's a matter of contractual law. A lease agreement can stipulate all kinds of restrictions on the tenant other than things that might be specifically forbidden by state landlord/tenant laws. If there is a no gun clause in the lease, and the tenant signs it, he or she is bound by contract law to honor the provisions. If the tenant does something restricted by the lease, he or she may be subject to whatever penalties the lease provides, such as eviction

K

Flyboy
May 8, 2008, 01:25 AM
First: It is completely legal for you to sign away any rights you choose to.
You can sign away anything in a private contract.
If I put something in a lease - and you sign it - then I can enforce it.
Can the condition be enforced? Yes. If the lease is voluntarily signed and there are no state or federal regulations counter to the prohibition then it is fully enforceable.
This is probably the closest to the truth. F4GIB points out that Minnesota law prohibits such clauses. Many other states consider rented property--or at least rented living space--to carry the full battery of rights allowed a property owner on to the lessee, so it'd depend on your local situation.

To those who said that anything in the lease is enforceable, why don't you add a clause allowing you to kneecap anybody whose rent is late, and let me know how that works out for you. Alternatively, just take a look at your last (or sometimes penultimate) clause--the severability clause. If everything in the contract were enforceable, why would you need a clause stating what was to happen in the event a clause was found unenforceable?

The truth of the matter is that some rights cannot be signed away, and those rights vary by jurisdiction. Consult your (local) attorney for a solid answer.

As for those suggesting that it's unethical or dishonorable to sign a contract with the intent to break it, I agree with you up to the point that I know the clause is unenforceable--if I know the clause is bad on its face, I don't feel bound by it. For example, a lot of contracts include clauses indemnifying one party even in cases of gross negligence. These contracts are almost always completely unenforceable, but signing the contract means you promise not to sue even in the event of gross negligence. Would you feel bound by such a contract if, for example, your surgeon amputated the wrong leg (yes, it happens)? I sure wouldn't.

BAT1
May 9, 2008, 12:40 PM
Yes, if they put it in he special provisions section, you look at it and sign it, it is enforceable. Sounds like they might of had problems before there, or they don't want any. I never put that clause in any of my lease signings, it was the yuppie part of town and well, I had a gun. If you have one, keep it locked up some where. [Safe] If they enter for maintenance, or pest control, they should leave an entry note. Those spot checks by the fire dept for fire alarms working is your main worry. Out of sight and out of mind.

Aguila Blanca
May 9, 2008, 07:03 PM
It's okay whether or not you get away with it.

Some things are morally wrong. However, possessing a firearm harms nobody. It's not wrong.

...

Follow your moral code when it comes to any act that actually has an impact on another person (or yourself).
Interesting moral code: If I read you correctly, your moral compass says it's okay to lie to the other guy if you think what he's asking you to sign away is not counter to YOUR idea of what's moral.

Are you okay with people lying to you when they think what you're asking is unreasoable according to THEIR idea of what's "right or wrong"?

As for those suggesting that it's unethical or dishonorable to sign a contract with the intent to break it, I agree with you up to the point that I know the clause is unenforceable--if I know the clause is bad on its face, I don't feel bound by it. For example, a lot of contracts include clauses indemnifying one party even in cases of gross negligence. These contracts are almost always completely unenforceable, but signing the contract means you promise not to sue even in the event of gross negligence. Would you feel bound by such a contract if, for example, your surgeon amputated the wrong leg (yes, it happens)? I sure wouldn't.
This sort of begs the question: If the clause is such a stinker, why would you sign the contract in the first place? I wouldn't.

Brad Johnson
May 12, 2008, 08:15 PM
My landlord has no legal right to search my personal property and if he ever asks what's in the safe i'll politely tell him to **** off.

In which case he will probably tell you politely to get the **** out of his place.

The tenant mindset befuddles me sometimes. You are paying rent. You are living in someone else's place. They are, in exchange for money, allowing you to put your crap inside and habitate. All under the conditions agreed to in the contract.

For some reason many tenants think having a key means they suddenly think they own the damn place and can do whatever, whenever. Sometimes they have to be reminded, in court, that the name on the deed isn't theirs and their priviledges extend only as far as the lease contract allows for.

My best friend works in the student legal deparment at a university. She's show me the stats on their stuff. A big majority of their caseload is landlord/tenant disputes. When I asked her if there was a common factor among them she didn't hesitate... stupid renters. People will suddenly get the idea that the lease terms mean nothing and the landlord can kiss their behind if they don't like it. Nine times out of ten the tenant gets a nice reminder that, yes, they did sign a lease agreement and, yes, it does mean exactly what it says and, no, they don't own the place nor can they just do whatever the heck they want because they don't like the rules.

Just this afternoon one of my investor clients learned, much to their surprise, that one of their tenants has four dogs. The tenant, much to his surprise, now has a nice pet rent assessment, retroactive to day one of his lease. His parents, much to their surprise, just realized that they are also liable because they co-signed the lease, and that their "darling child" had lied to both them and the landlord about the dogs.

Want to guess what his justification was? "I thought it was stupid to make me pay pet rent. Yeah, so I like, lied a little when I said I didn't have dogs. I paying them rent anyway so what's their ****ing problem?"

Brad

Kharn
May 12, 2008, 09:56 PM
There's nothing in the Constitution or the law stating you cant sign away rights in a contract of your own free will in exchange for goods or services you desire.

Kharn

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