Apartment requires additional deposit for D* dish (1 Viewer)

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Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Aug 20, 2008
I've lived in my current apartment complex for 3 years and had D* for about 2 of the 3 years. I complied with all of the apartment rules at the time I had D* installed (no drilling, within the confines of my balcony, etc).

Yesterday I got notice that the apartment policies regarding satellite dishes has changed and they now require 1) an additional $75 security deposit, 2) Liability insurance with proof of said insurance, and 3) more specific and more stringent guidelines on installation requirements.

My dish has survived a hurricane, multiple strong wind and thunder storms, etc, and has not moved even a quarter of an inch, so I'm certain that my installation is adequate. My question is this- are these new policies legal, and if so, can they be applied retroactively? In other words, if I met the previous policy, can they hold me to the new standards or do they have to grandfather me in?

Any help or advice is greatly appreciated.
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Big Dawg 23

SatelliteGuys Pro
Oct 13, 2008
Northfield, MN
Not exactly sure if they can. Take the case up them on the time it has been installed and see what they say. I would think there has to be grandfathering.

Mr Tony

SatelliteGuys Pro
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
Mankato, MN
they cant do that according to OTARD

Q: What types of restrictions are prohibited?

A: The rule prohibits restrictions that impair a person's ability to install, maintain, or use an antenna covered by the rule. The rule applies to state or local laws or regulations, including zoning, land-use or building regulations, private covenants, homeowners' association rules, condominium or cooperative association restrictions, lease restrictions, or similar restrictions on property within the exclusive use or control of the antenna user where the user has an ownership or leasehold interest in the property. A restriction impairs if it: (1) unreasonably delays or prevents use of; (2) unreasonably increases the cost of; or (3) precludes a person from receiving or transmitting an acceptable quality signal from an antenna covered under the rule. The rule does not prohibit legitimate safety restrictions or restrictions designed to preserve designated or eligible historic or prehistoric properties, provided the restriction is no more burdensome than necessary to accomplish the safety or preservation purpose.

Q: What is an unreasonable expense?

A: Any requirement to pay a fee to the local authority for a permit to be allowed to install an antenna would be unreasonable because such permits are generally prohibited. It may also be unreasonable for a local government, community association or landlord to require a viewer to incur additional costs associated with installation. Things to consider in determining the reasonableness of any costs imposed include: (1) the cost of the equipment and services, and (2) whether there are similar requirements for comparable objects, such as air conditioning units or trash receptacles. For example, restrictions cannot require that expensive landscaping screen relatively unobtrusive DBS antennas. A requirement to paint an antenna so that it blends into the background against which it is mounted would likely be acceptable, provided it will not interfere with reception or impose unreasonable costs.

from that clip they cant charge you extra because you have a dish


You Member, Member ?
Supporting Founder
Jul 18, 2005
Well now that Iceberg showed you that they cant charge you extra, and you show them the proof from FCC, then they might find any other excuse to try to end your lease just to make a point since they have no case.


SatelliteGuys Pro
Apr 10, 2009
Well, to be fair what Iceberg posted says they cant charge you an 'unreasonable' amount or a permit fee.

It'd be pretty easy to argue that a permit fee is not being assessed, and that $75 is not 'unreasonable'.

The cost of the liability insurance might be considered unreasonable, but on the other hand if you're a renter and dont have a renters insurance policy with at least some liability coverage, then you're exposing yourself to a lot of potential damages while saving a pretty small amount of money. Or you have little or no assets or likely ability to make more than a fairly minimal income over the next decade or two.

Whether the requirements can be applied retroactively is irrelevant. If you dont follow them, while you'll be right as rain and likely to prevail after spending thousands of dollars in a lawsuit, your landlord will surely find a way to terminate your living arrangements or make your life so miserable that you'll voluntarily leave.

Claude Greiner

SatelliteGuys Master
Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
Detroit - The Paris of the Midwest
I have seen this way too many times. Its not enforcable legally, but people think they will be kicked out of their apartment so they either comply or don't put up a Dish at all.

The Insurance is bull, and the only way I would agree with the $75 if it was refundable when you move out for a final "De-installation" cost so you take the Dish with you. I see too many apartments where there is Dishes that aren't even being used anymore and its hard for anyone to clean up because you don't know which Dishes are working and which ones are not unless you see one out of wack.
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SatelliteGuys Pro
Feb 13, 2005
If you have a lease, they can't legally make any changes or add any charges for anything during the term of the lease. Still, they made decide that they won't renew your lease when it does expires and that they can do that.

I think what it comes down too is how much you like living there. I know you're in the right, but if you're happy there and want to continue to live there, it might be a lot cheaper and easier just to pay them the $75, assuming it's only a one-time fee and not yearly. Sometimes it's just not worth fighting.
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Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Aug 20, 2008
Thanks for the information.

I've talked it over with the manager and she's willing to grandfather me in but claims she has to get approval from corporate to do so. The complex recently changed owners and she doesn't know what the new owners will say because she hasn't worked with them very long.

She claims the fact that i've been a 'model tenant' and always pay rent early should carry some weight, but she's waiting on a reply.

She was unaware of the FCC stuff and is going to use that as a last ditch effort if they decline her current request for grandfathering based solely on her recommendation. I think she's waiting because she doesn't want to ruffle her new bosses' feathers.

Joe Diamond

SatelliteGuys Pro
May 3, 2004
Do nothing!

You have been ok in the past. Wait and see if anyone comes forward to enforce the new policy.

Act surprised...as Iceberg stated, they can't do it according to OTARD (a fed law).

Find out from the maintenance guy how the occupancy rate is. If management has a waiting list prepare to kiss some ass. IF they raise rents or otherwise harass existing tenants...and many folks leave you can threaten to leave yourself.

Prepare to move if asserting your request fails. New management is rarely a good thing.

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