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Actions of Landlady may be inappropriate, unethical, or illegal....need advice fast!!!

Posted by Matthew Dunn on April 05, 2000 at 19:02:30:

I am renting an apartment in Jackson, MS. The apartment is one of only four arranged in a 2-story quadraplex located in a middle class neighborhood.....the landlord lives in the house right across the street from the complex. Well, peculiar things have been going on. I discovered yesterday (Tuesday, 4/4/2000) that my key will work in my neighbor's door. She was locked out of her apartment and had heard from one of the other tenants upstairs that her key worked for BOTH of the upstairs apartments. I tried my key in the other ground-level apartment, and it worked. We told this to the girl upstairs, she tried her key in a ground-level apartment, and IT worked as well. It's obvious that all of the locks in the complex are identical. My question: IS THIS COMMON? ETHICAL? LEGAL? I don't know what to do because ON TOP OF THAT, my neighbors and I suspect the landlord's wife has been entering the apartments and snooping around without consent of the tenants. She (the landlady) sits in her house across the street and watches the activity of the tenants, monitors when we come and leave, and when we have visitors. To an extent, I don't care....however, she has taken it to an extreme. She gave one tenant an ultimatum: The young woman's boyfriend is forbidden from visiting (because the landlady believes overnight visits are unethical and inappropriate) and has threatened to raise her rent. There is nothing in the lease about a visitation policy OR rent change. I feel like the landlady is invading the privacy of all of the tenants and has stepped way beyond her bounds. I realize there may be a lot to address in this situation, so any advice about anything would be appreciated. Thanks for reading this lengthy explanation.... -Matt
PS....this is my first apartment, so I have no experiences to which I can compare this.

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