Can a property management company decide how many people can live in a 1 bedroom apartment?

UPDATED: Jan 11, 2012

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Can a property management company decide how many people can live in a 1 bedroom apartment?

Started renting our 1 apartment over 2 1/2 years ago. Then 4 months ago we had a baby; there is now are 3 people living here. The lease was renewed every time without problems. Starting this month, a new management company took over the building and they told us that a new room size policy will be enforced; it requires us to rent a 2 bedroom apartment. The lease agreement does not specify a building code or policy room size. Can be this seen as housing discrimination?

Asked on January 11, 2012 under Real Estate Law, Virginia


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

It is contractually legal for the new property manager to require a larger room requirement for a rental as far as bedrooms go after your lease is up but not before. I would ask for an explanation in writing for the new room size policy.

From what you have written, the new room size policy does not appear on its face to be discriminatory assuming the rules are 2 people per bedroom and no more. You need to be aware that your city or county may have zoning requirements as to what the number of people may be per room. I suggest that you go down to your local zoning department to see if there are restrictions regarding the number of people per bedroom in the community you live in.

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