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NY Attorney General Locksmith Laws For Apartment Buildings

Got your own place in New York state? By this time, you must be exhilarated. A lot has been said about NY. It is a place where independent people have a blast at life. When talking about starting a life in New York and practically everywhere else, there are things you need to ask yourself first. One of which is, have you changed the lock already? Yes, as meager as it may seem, one of the first steps in establishing a life of your own in new a place is changing the door lock. However, if you live in a building you cannot simply call a locksmith to change your door lock. You and your family are not the kings and Queens of the building. Building administrators and landlords implements rules in installing and changing door locks. These rules may vary from one state to another. Hence, if you are moving to heavily populated area like NYC where most people live in apartments, here are a few things you need to know about these regulations:

  • Rules on installing new locks and providing landlords with a key duplicate – According to the New York State Attorney General’s Tenants Right Guide, tenants in multiple dwellings are allowed to install their own locks on their apartment entrance doors. The rule however does not state whether you can remove the old lock provided by the building. The rule only says that you can install your own in addition to what is already there when you occupied the unit. You may perhaps clarify with your landlord if they have specific rules on this. It is also required in New York state to provide a key duplicate to the landlord. You may be uncomfortable with the idea of providing a stranger with a duplicate of your front door key, but do know that your landlords are also bound by rules prohibiting them from entering any of their tenants’ units without permissions. A violation to this also merits serious sanctions, so just think of this as a rule you need to follow and put a little faith on your landlord. Keep in mind that in today’s advanced world there are house keys that can’t be duplicated without a special card. These are usually made by Mul-T-Lock and you may want to run then by landlord.

  • Additional rent or fees for new door locks – There are a lot of reasons why your landlord may impose a rent increase or additional fees on some upkeep and facility enhancements. However, if the increase is for a new door lock you just installed, ask your landlord that you know about New York state’s rule on this. This is illegal. New York does not allow building owners, administrators and landlords to collect additional fees or rent for new door locks that you installed and paid for yourself. The typical locksmith service would be more familiar with these things too.

  • Emergency entry by landlords or building administrators – Speaking of that uneasy idea of giving a key duplicate to your landlord, the rule is that they cannot enter your place without your permission for any reason whatsoever. However, the rule states that they can actually make an emergency entry under certain circumstances. These situations were unfortunately not specified in the guide, but we can just presume that these are in case of fire, accidents, in case somebody gets trapped in there and needs their help, or just about any emergency incident that they need to act on as responsible human beings. There is no way for you to feel at ease about this idea if you do not trust your landlord, so be friendly, build some rapport with your landlord. Maybe they can even recommend a certified locksmith service for you.

Living independently in New York can be loads of fun. And part of this independence if making sure you are safe in your own place. Hence, before you call that locksmith for your new door lock, keep these rules in mind and make sure you and your landlord understand the rules governing the installation and changing or door locks in NY.