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I encountered a landlord asking for a $60 fee or deposit on top of first month's rent, last month's rent, and security deposit (equal to one month's rent). This is illegal, since MGL c. 186, §15B only provides for key/lock replacement costs on top of those payments (and this is unrelated to keys and locks.)
Since I haven't yet entered into a relationship with the landlord, I'm guessing I can't sue for damages. If I did pay, I suppose I could legally subtract $60 from my next month's rent check, and the landlord would then be unable to successfully recover it. (I wouldn't want to live in an adversarial situation like that, of course.) Are there any other mechanisms for enforcement?As a general note... no, I wouldn't want to live with a landlord in an adversarial relationship, but I'm privileged to have a wide range of choices of where to live. Not everyone is so lucky.