It’s a pretty darn confusing world out there. While information is available on just about every subject under the sun, separating fact from fiction is often still a bit fuzzy. Let’s take the rules of being a landlord in Ontario for example.
The Residential Tenancies Act is the main Go-to-Source, or better yet, the holy-book in this realm. The Act details the rules of engagement between landlords and tenants and outlines a platform (The Landlord & Tenant Board) whereby disputes can be dealt with. So here we go! What are our top 5 things landlords cannot do?
#1 Landlords cannot insist that tenants pay their rent by post-dated cheque or automatic debit. Of-course, these ways of paying rent can be “suggested” but a tenant cannot be refused a rental unit or evicted for refusing to use either option.
#2 Landlords cannot take possession of a tenant’s personal property for unpaid rent while the tenant is still living in the rental unit. That’s right, that 50 inch screen cannot be seized then used as collateral folks!
#3 Landlords cannot shut off or deliberately interfere with the supply of a vital service such as heat, electricity, fuel, gas, or hot or cold water. However, landlords are allowed to shut-off services temporarily if this is necessary to make repairs.
#4 Landlords cannot prevent a tenant from moving in with a pet. Yup, this one comes as a shocker to most! The Act states, and I quote: “A provision in a tenancy agreement prohibiting the presence of animals in or about the residential complex is void.” Meaning? It simply aint valid! End of story.
#5 Landlords cannot collect rental deposits for more than one month’s rent. If the rent is paid weekly, then it must be for one week’s rent. This deposit must be used as the rent payment for the last month or week of the tenancy period. And here’s the kicker: A landlord must pay interest on the deposit every year!
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