I just discovered that my former landlord is using pictures of the apartment when I lived there to try to rent the apartment. I was never asked or informed that pictures of my personal items would be on display for all to see. I emailed them to remove the pictures, and although they said that they would, they have yet to do so. What is my next step?
First, you should refer to your lease to see what obligations you have and refer to your state’s laws to know your tenant rights. Depending on the language in the lease and your state’s laws, you may be obligated to reasonably assist your landlord in reletting or selling the property. Using photographs of the property that include your personal possessions may be interpreted as reasonable, significantly limiting your options. Even if the lease is silent on this issue, the landlord may be able to assert that the use of these photographs is reasonable and has not harmed you. You may be able to argue that the use of photographs with your personal possessions in not necessary because the landlord can obtain photographs without your possessions now that you no longer live there. However, if you consented to the photographs being taken, you may have lost the right to restrict their use. Even if you were to win against the landlord, you would probably not be able to ask for a lot of money in a lawsuit. For this reason, your best option is approach the landlord and any realtor he is working with to attempt to resolve the situation outside of court. If you do decide to file a suit, you should consult a local attorney
specializing in landlord/tenant issues.