Recently, Bill Ethier from the Properties in Victoria Professionals Team sat down with Hunter Boucher, Member Services Manager at Landlord BC to learn about some of the rule/regulation changes surrounding the BC Residential Tenancy Act. The following highlights were touched on during the video interview.
Back in December 2017 the BC Government introduced changes to the rules surrounding Fixed-Term Tenancies. Landlords will no longer be able to include a “vacate”clause in the fixed-term tenancy agreement. Prior to the change, the vacate clause meant the tenant would have to vacate the property on that date, unless agreed to in writing, between landlord and tenant, that the tenancy would move to a month-to-month. With removal of the vacate clause, now at the end of the fixed-term, the tenancy automatically moves into a month-to-month unless the tenant gives notice that they will be leaving.
In May of this year the government phased in a few more changes to the Act including the following: Landlords must now give four months notice to end tenancy for demolition, renovation or conversion and tenants have 30 days to dispute the notice. Prior to this change it was a two month notice and 15 days to dispute. The tenant still receives one free months rent if given notice. With this change came changes to the penalties as well. If the landlord fails to take the necessary steps to accomplish the stated purpose for ending the tenancy under Section 49 of the Act, within a reasonable period of time after the effective date of the notice or they do not use the rental for the stated purpose for at least 6 months, the landlord could be liable to compensate the tenant for 12 months’ rent.
Another change, if a purchaser is acquiring a tenanted property and is intending to take vacant possession on the property (serving notice to the tenant to vacate when the purchaser becomes the owner) the purchaser’s name and contact information must appear on the notice. The addition of the purchasers contact information on the notice is so the tenant can apply for compensation from the purchaser, if the purchaser or their close family member (mom, dad, or children) does not move into the rental unit within a reasonable time. This penalty now has been increased to 12 months rent as well.
For more information on the the above changes and further detail on the BC Residential Tenancy Act click here.
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