A woman posted a story on Reddit asking for advice, and what resulted maybe the only case of Reddit siding with a landlord. You decide who the A-hole is...
AITA (Am I the A-hole) for not giving 24 hours notice to my daughter's roommates before dropping something off?
I am a mother to a 20-year-old daughter. She is a junior in college and attends school in the same city that we live. My daughter and two of her friends live in a condominium that I own. Her friends pay below-market rent while my daughter does not.
The condo was inherited from my parents and it was their intent that I would pass ownership of it to my daughter when she is mature enough to own her own place. My daughter, husband, and I are in agreement that she will take over ownership of the condo when she is out of school and financially independent.
Earlier this week, my daughter mentioned that she had run out of some household supplies and would have to set aside time to go shopping before the end of the week. My daughter's schedule has been especially rough lately, as she has picked up extra shifts at her part time job due to short staffing. Wanting to be helpful, I offered to pick up the supplies for her and drop them off at her place. She accepted.
The next day, I picked up the supplies and took them to the condo. I knew my daughter was in class, so I knocked and, when no one answered, let myself in. The front door opens into the living room. When I entered, I found one of my daughter's roommates being intimate with a man on the living room couch.
I was obviously mortified, so I left the supplies at the door and left right away. I didn't say anything to my daughter about what happened because I didn't want to put her in an uncomfortable position but I did let her know that I had dropped off the supplies.
On Friday, I got an angry email from the roommate's parents. I'm not sure exactly what they were told but their email lambasted me for invading their daughter's privacy. They said that what I did was wrong because I'm their daughter's landlord and I entered the condo without giving 24-hours notice. They're threatening to take legal action if I do it again.
I am vaguely familiar with this requirement, but didn't think it was applicable here. Was I the asshole in this situation? I feel bad about what happened but I also don't feel like I was out of line.
I am not asking for judgment on whether I violated the law. I checked in with a friend who is a lawyer and he thinks that, because my daughter gave explicit permission to enter the home and drop off the supplies, I'm in the clear. I am asking whether I was the a-hole for doing so.
I called and texted my daughter asking to discuss the situation. She can't speak to me right now because her roommates are fighting and she's mediating, but she is aware of the situation and sent me a quick explanation. My daughter had notified all the roommates that I was coming over but Roommate 1 apparently forgot.
The man she was with was Roommate 2's boyfriend. She freaked out and contacted her parents because she was scared I would spill the beans.
I still don't know exactly what she told her parents but I assume it wasn't the full story. I have never met Roommate 2's boyfriend, so I didn't know it was him. Roommate 1 and Roommate 2 are fighting now and, needless to say, Roommate 1 will be moving out.
I will be writing a more comprehensive, formal lease for Roommate 2 for both my protection and hers but, in all honesty, Roommate 2 is wonderful and I do not anticipate that there will be any problems.
Here's what Reddit had to say:
NTA. You were not entering in your capacity as Landlord but in your capacity as your daughter’s mother, in which case you do not need to provide notice. You also had your daughter’s permission.
Roommate had no expectation of privacy vis-a-vis her roommates who could have walked in at any time (regardless of whether they had a class scheduled or not); she shouldn’t have been doing it on the couch out in the open.
I'm... confused about the roommate position here. She was having sex in a shared area of a house she shares with two other people. That's two people who could have caught her.
She ran to mommy and daddy to tell on her landlord... which, ok, not everyone is confrontational, but I very much doubt that she went 'Mom, I was having sex with a guy on the living room and the [OP] entered out of nowhere!' I'm 99.99% sure she's telling a very different version of what actually happened
It’s a good thing you did walk in on her then because who knows what kind of snakey stuff Roommate 1 was also doing to your daughter. I wonder how she’ll spin all of this to her parents.
This is exactly what I guessed. Roommate 1 had to make up a quick self-defending story in case this got back to her parents. So she deflected by making it sound like you barged into her bedroom.
We all know that roommate 1 didn't told her parents that she was screwing Roommate's 2 boyfriend in the common couch. Charge her for the cleaning of the couch and kick her out, tell her parents and don't back down.
I feel bad for both your daughter and Roomate 2, imagine living with someone this nasty, she wasn't even grown enough to talk to you about it but also called her parents? She's grown enough to do be this shameless but apparently not big enough to face the consequences lol. Best of luck Op, clearly NTA.