Municipal Affairs and Housing

Province fixes loophole threatening renters

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Municipal Affairs and Housing

Province fixes loophole threatening renters

Contacts
Lindsay Byers
Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
250 952-0617
(flickr.com)
Contacts
Lindsay Byers
Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing
250 952-0617

Backgrounders

Further details on amendments

The ministry has consulted with key stakeholders to identify under which circumstances a landlord will be permitted to use a vacate clause in fixed-term tenancy agreements. For example:

  • A person might need to rent out their home during an extended absence for work or travel but has firm plans to return on a particular date; and
  • A tenant needs to sublet a rental unit for a set period of time.

There are two situations involving existing fixed-term tenancy agreements where a vacate clause can still be enforced. If, before the day the legislative amendments were introduced:

  • A landlord, expecting their tenant to move out at the end of the term, has already entered into a tenancy agreement with a new tenant; and
  • A landlord was granted an order of possession requiring a tenant to vacate the unit, but the possession order has not yet taken effect.

The proposed changes will also strengthen the ability of the Residential Tenancy Branch to enforce compliance under the Residential Tenancy Act and Manufactured Home Park Tenancy Act.

The amendments will allow the branch to:

  • Compel the production of documents as part of a penalty investigation;
  • Publish penalty decisions;
  • Refuse to accept an application for dispute resolution if an administrative penalty is owed; and
  • Pursue prosecution where penalties have been levied, but there is still no compliance.

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