We regularly see comments below questions about apartments or condominiums asking whether the person has permission from the land owner. Here's a recent example. It's usually distracting and irrelevant, in my opinion, though it may be helpful to some.

Should such questions be asked in the first place, and should they be flagged as "No longer needed", either before or after a response from the asker is received?

Would it be better to note such concerns on answers instead?

  • I'd say that when I was a young renter, I certainly didn't really think about the fact that I shouldn't be making changes to the places I rented and that it could have been illegal. (Not that this ever stopped us in the fraternity house, but that's a really different story.) Of course, that was before the 'net had the answers to life, the universe, and everything. However, I think that many naive young go-getters are renting and it's worthwhile to make sure they know.
    – FreeMan
    Aug 23, 2021 at 15:44

1 Answer 1


I think those questions need to be asked. It is clear that from time to time new questions come here with someone proposing something that just should not even be tried. It is easy to extrapolate to there being proposals to do modifications in rentals or apartments where the person posting has little or no clue that they should stop thinking about doing what they propose.

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    Maybe, but I'm struggling to recall a single instance where the OP has come back and said, "oh, yeah, I guess I shouldn't do that". It's almost always a non-response or "I own the place". This makes such comments just noise nine out of ten times.
    – isherwood
    Jan 7, 2021 at 21:14
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    I suspect that in many cases OP won't say anything about the "shouldn't do electrical, etc. in a rental" rule for a variety of reasons, but that many still take it under advisement. I bet most people don't read the fine print of their rental contract. They know whether they can/can't have a pet, they know they'll get in trouble if they make too much noise, but many have no idea that they shouldn't replace a switch- e.g., install a smart switch - they won't ask the landlord because the landlord is cheap but they feel worth it for themselves, and it isn't "broken" so they figure they should Jan 8, 2021 at 2:40
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    not bother the landlord with it. That's just one example. Then there are the "I broke it, I should fix it" types who don't realize there could be problems with their actions. Letting them know at least lets them make an educated decision. Can't count on them having read it elsewhere because they don't even find the obvious duplicates. And FAQ-ish stuff here doesn't work well, so it needs to be very direct - comment or in answer. Jan 8, 2021 at 2:41

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