Skip to main content

Tenant or Roommate what makes them different? 20 People can live together as a family, ok but 5 woman can't share a home.? Why?

Middle Island, NY |

Threes company considered each other roommates. Golden Girls considered each other roommates They didn't know each other to start with.
A person living with you as a roommate and states they are roommates, once you ask them to move because the want to live for free NOW ARE TENANTS.
Shared housing normally split and divided bills so each pay their share. 10x10, and 25x20 with private bath one would pay a higher split than the other, YES.

Boarders in the past were people that ONLY HAD A BEDROOM, and the landlord supplied dinner to the guest. They didn't share the house.
Is it not BIAS? Only families that are allowed to own homes. Once my husband dies I have no rights to continue to own my home and not allowed to share with other woman.. No locks, no separate areas, all share complete home

Attorney Answers 4

Posted

I can't really answer your question as far as New York law, but this has been an issue I've dealt with extensively because of how the California Supreme Court interpreted what constitutes a "family" in the case Adamson v City of Santa Barbara. At the same time, keep in mind that the decision was under the California Constitution and there is a U.S. Supreme Court case that says its ok to have a narrow definition of family in zoning regulations under the federal constitution. Anyway, here's a link to an interesting law review article on the subject that may be of interest.... Perhaps some of the New York zoning law attorneys will weigh in with more information...

http://scholarship.law.umt.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1516&context=mlr

THESE COMMENTS MUST NOT BE CONSIDERED LEGAL ADVICE. Comments made on websites such as Avvo.com are provided for information purposes only, and you should not base a decision to act or refrain from acting based upon this answer. The only way to determine how the law may apply to your particular situation is to consult with an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction. Answering this question does not create an attorney-client relationship or otherwise require further consultation. That relationship is established by the execution of a written agreement for legal services. Also, see Avvo's terms and conditions of use, specifically item 9, incorporated by this reference.

Mark as helpful

1 found this helpful

2 lawyers agree

1 comment

David Herman Hirsch

David Herman Hirsch

Posted

Oh, I added "land use/zoning" to the tagged practice areas... Let's see if any New York land use attorneys answer your question...

Posted

Most of the time it is zoning issues and for the protection of the other residents from fire, etc- sometimes it is allowed if you attain a variance like a fraternity or sorority. take care.

Legal disclaimer: The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Massachusetts. Responses are based solely on Massachusetts law unless stated otherwise.

Mark as helpful

3 lawyers agree

4 comments

Asker

Posted

Private home, nothing different in the home ever. Become single and one income to pay huge taxes and utilities so you look for 4 others to share with you. Split the prices as per the sizes of the bedrooms and private bathrooms. Roommates as we call each other share complete house. One roommate decides not to split expenses and we have to request them to move. Are they tenants? or are they roommates. When a roommate decides they want to live for free they now call the town they are TENANTS.. They are not but how do you address these issues. 5 woman rent a home together, that allowed. If the one woman decides to not pay her expenses how does the others put her out. Also can they put another woman in once that person moves out. Yes, this is a problem...singles should also have a right to live in a home.. can happen if two woman share a two bedroom apt, and one decides not to pay their half. How do you put the one not paying there part of the bill. Other one shouldn't have to pay the full bill, nor should they have to move out of their home.. Any ideas. Sharing housing goes on every day..It is a big legal issue. Town codes change as per the money needs of the towns not interested in the citizens. 2014 money is tight and people may need to live together to have housing. Nice middle class people also need housing.. NY or MA housing apt are outragous and people need to share to have a place to live. Not everyone is a family with two plus incomes.. Young people have this problem every day.. College grad students need to have housing also and they always live 3/4 together,and share everything is this also wrong? Believe it or not the towns are allowed to break into these homes and it's ok.. Civil rights violation and have to address in appellate court

Steven Warren Smollens

Steven Warren Smollens

Posted

OK. This is a question very similar in all details to a series of questions dealing with the zoning ordinance of the Town of Brookhaven, so you may want to check the answers for those questions. In any case, in the State of New York, a Home Owner of a Single Family House is a "Landlord" to any persons renting from the owner any portion of the house (a bedroom and shared kitchen, living room and bathroom, and garage and drive way and rear and front yard) and so the statutory New York notion of roommate does not apply [in the statute a roommate [the word is never used] is an occupant living together with a tenant, and not in a co-tenancy relationship, and not entitled to the privilege the tenant has with the lease made with the landlord), so no matter how you want to claim that the persons living with you are roommate, there is no known method for transforming a person with a direct relationship with a homeowner into a person with a direct relationship with a tenant. In any case, the so-called roommate law, limits the right of a tenant to no more than one roommate (and the roommate's dependents) as long as the number of persons occupying the dwelling is not in excess of any federal, state and local law, rule or ordinance, capping the upper limit of the number of persons who may lawfully occupy the dwelling. In you case, as the landlord only you, not any other tenant or "roommate" has the legal right to go to court to evict the unwanted tenant or "roommate." The notion of "legal possession" at the jurisdictional core of the NY summary proceeding, is invoked only when the person commencing the lawsuit is a person entitled to possession of the premises as a judgment from the court. That would exclude all the persons in your house from the authority to commence the possession proceeding other than you as the landlord and owner. You may continue to joust with the issue or bite the bullet and hire an attorney to help you evict the undesired tenant.

Asker

Posted

Hired a atty and he was abused by the court..

Steven Warren Smollens

Steven Warren Smollens

Posted

OK. That must be very disappointing. There are many lawyers practicing real estate law and litigation on Long Island. You should continue to look for an attorney.

Posted

Almost no part of your post is accurate.

A person you invite to live with you is your tenant when you bring them in, has nothing to do with asking them to move.

Three's Company and Golden Girls were sit-coms. Not a good basis for assessing a real living situation.

What boarders in the past did or did not do in the past is immaterial to your specific situation. And your assessmen of how things were operated is at best a general description, at worst a TV image of boarding houses.

It is not true that only families are allowed to own homes.

Your statements about what will happen when your husband dies is as inaccurate as the rest of your post.

Strongly recommend you chat with a NY property attorney ASAP.

NOT LEGAL ADVICE. FOR EDUCATION AND INFORMATION ONLY. DO NOT RELY ON ANY ADVICE YOU RECEIVE FROM ME OR ANY OTHER ATTORNEY IN THIS FORUM. Legal advice comes after a complete review of the facts and relevant documents and an expressed (written) agreement of representation that forms attorney-client confidentiality. Neither of these two events can occur in this forum. Mr. Rafter is licensed to practice in the Commonwealth of Virginia and the US Federal Courts in Virginia. His answers to any Avvo question are rooted in general legal principles--NOT your specific state laws. There is no implied or actual attorney-client relationship arising from this education exchange. You should speak with an attorney licensed in your state, to whom you have provided all the facts before you take steps that may impact your legal rights. Mr. Rafter is under no obligation to answer subsequent emails or phone calls related to this or any other matter.

Mark as helpful

3 lawyers agree

2 comments

Asker

Posted

I have been told a guest that you allow to stay at your home for two or three weeks and refuses to leave becomes a tenant also.. PAID NOT ONE DIME. So don't allow you brother or sister to move into your home if they end up on the street. They might have no other place and refuse to leave

Steven Warren Smollens

Steven Warren Smollens

Posted

OK. In New York State any person occupying a residence for longer than thirty days is considered a "tenant" if rent was paid and cannot be evicted but for a court process. ">>>A tenant shall include an occupant of one or more rooms in a rooming house or a resident, not including a transient occupant, of one or more rooms in a hotel who has been in possession for thirty consecutive days or longer; he shall not be removed from possession except in a special proceeding. A special proceeding may be maintained under this article upon the following grounds: >>>"- See more at: http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/nycode/RPA/7/711#sthash.1HtRP79U.dpuf An unwanted guest must also be evicted through a court process but that does not mean that person is a tenant. Even a squatter and a licensee (an unwanted guest) cannot be 'evicted" without court process: ">>>A special proceeding may be maintained under this article after a ten-day notice to quit has been served upon the respondent in the manner prescribed in section 735, upon the following grounds: >>>" http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/nycode/RPA/7/713 So whether your unwanted person rises to the level of a person who must be evicted by a proceeding grounded in the existence of a landlord and tenant relationship [RPAPL section 711] or is a person where there is no landlord and tenant relationship, such as a squatter or licensee [RPAPL section 713]; there is no self-he;p remedy for a landlord in New York State. The process of the court must be involved and a legal eviction is conducted only by means of an execution of a warrant of eviction issued by a court. These are the lawful and ancient remedies for the recovery of real property. A lawyer should be able to help you determine which statute (711 or 713) applies to your unwanted guest.

Posted

You do not say who has told you that you CAN'T live with these roommates. Your town government may have passed an ordinance restricting occupancy. You need to speak to a very local attorney who is familiar with the laws of Suffolk County and of Middle Island.

Mark as helpful

4 lawyers agree

1 comment

Asker

Posted

Town of Brookhaven Town, changes codes to hurt and cause homes to be foreclosed on.. Single people are being singled out. I'm a widow have owned my home for 35 years. Home taxes $14,000 and I have not one child. My home is in excellent condition and not a issue to my neighbors.. Town go through court records in Landlord Tenant court, they seen to get the permission of the court to research files. Have watched this happen first hand. I have had to put out two different people because they chose to live in the home and pay NO expenses. I had to take them to L/T court as there was nothing I could do to get them removed. No all people do what they need too, like to use people. Hired a Real Estate, town code atty, BUT this was a CRIMINAL CASE. I didn't know town violations are CRIMINAL... Single people are not allowed to live in a home..Sharing housing make a lot of sense. Not everyone makes $150,000 per year. Even apts are to expense for a lot of single people. There are no additions to the home, one kitchen, yes two of the rooms do have private bathrooms. Many couples put a lock on a bedroom door. Told in NYS YOU ARE NOT ALLOWED A DOOR LOCK ON ANY DOOR..... Can put a bathroom lock....so if you need to get into would have to pic it? Is it better for neighborhoods to have half in foreclosure? Long Island is 50% foreclosed. There are no jobs on LI. I'm a RN and make half of what I made in 1991, but even with that I can afford my home alone...Five bedrooms I should be allowed to have roommates, but they want to call them Tenants.. Three's company, Golden girls were they roommates or tenants... They started out not knowing each other, and they changed from time to time...Shared one home

Civil rights topics

Top tips from attorneys

What others are asking

Can't find what you're looking for?

Post a free question on our public forum.

Ask a Question

- or -

Search for lawyers by reviews and ratings.

Find a Lawyer

Browse all legal topics