DEAR HARRIETTE: I moved into a basement apartment of a one-family house. My property owner lives on the first floor of the home, and he is a religious person. I have a separate entrance, and I plan to have female friends visit from time to time. Because my property owner is very religious, I think there may be an issue with bringing female company over to my apartment. Do you think I should let him know in advance, or is it none of his business who I bring over to my place? -- Mostly Happy Tenant, Brooklyn, N.Y.
DEAR MOSTLY HAPPY TENANT: It sounds like you knew that your property owner was religious before you moved into his house. While as a renter you have the legal right to invite whomever you want into your home, you also suspect that this man will consider your planned behavior disrespectful.
Is it worth it for you to entertain lady friends in a way that will incite anger, disappointment or other negative emotions? Do you intend to stay there short-term or for a while? I ask because you probably don't want to cause friction from the start. It can make it far more difficult to be invited to renew your lease.
A compromise could be to have company for dinner but not allow her to spend the night. It may seem old school, but to your landlord it will simply seem respectful.