Legal Question in Real Estate Law in California

Tenants right to overnight guests

I rent a room to a very nice lady. The only issue I've ever had with her is that she loves to have people come over to spend the night. These people would stay in my third bedroom, using my sheets and blankets. At first it didn't bother me, until it started getting out of hand. I asked her to not have any more overnight guests, and she has obliged. I just want to make sure that I am within my rights to ask that of her. Please advise. Thank you.

Asked on 1/16/04, 3:54 pm

3 Answers from Attorneys

Donald Holben Donald R. Holben & Associates, APC
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Re: Tenants right to overnight guests

Yes. You may want to ablige by having her pay for extra costs, etc., etc. If not, probably within your rights to end it as you have.

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1/19/04, 11:50 am
Bryan Whipple Bryan R. R. Whipple, Attorney at Law
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Re: Tenants right to overnight guests

Ordinarily, tenants are allowed to have overnight guests. However, from the facts you give, this lady probably wouldn't be considered a 'tenant.' Legally she is more likely a 'lodger.' A lodger is someone who rents a room in a private residence and has incidental privileges in the rest of the house. The rights of a lodger are somewhat more limited than those of a tenant, and while I haven't researched the matter, I doubt that a lodger has a right to overnight guests even in the room assigned to the lodger.

In any case, if the third bedroom isn't part of what is rented, whether she's a tenant or a lodger she has no right to expect to use it for herself, much less for her guests, without your permission in each instance.

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1/16/04, 4:58 pm
Michael Olden Law Offices of Michael A. Olden
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Re: Tenants right to overnight guests

You have every reason to make this request. She is just renting one room in your residents and therefore she is a border. Now border would be treated a little bit differently then a "renter" as if she were renting the whole of the premises, an apartment or house. You did not say whether this was a written or oral agreement. More importantly it depends on what you have written. Whether you received the aid of an attorney in giving you advice as to what you should have written at the outset. Basically, I hope the good guy doesn't finish last. If she agrees with you and complies than you should have no problem. If you do have a problem that continues or process immediately, yesterday, right away get your self to a real live attorney so that he or she can advise you properly as to what to do in the situation. You want an attorney who is specialized in landlord/tenant law. If she is on a month-to-month basis, an oral agreement not in writing where there is no specific set term for a lease you have the right to evict her on 30 days written notice. You can discuss that with her and see if she will sign a border agreement in writing which to notes all the terms and conditions under which she can occupy the residence, i.e. kitchen privileges, TV at night, use of the living room etc.. Yes all this is necessary in a border agreement and even more.i have been practicing law in this speciality for over 30 years in the san francisco bay area and if you wish to consult with me you can contact me at 925-945-6000. The

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1/16/04, 7:29 pm

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