What You Need to Know About the Residential Tenancy Act

At Custom Realty, we have years of experience in Property Management. We consider it an honour to look after your residential rental property or unit and ensure we are always up-to-date with the current rules regarding Tenancy Agreements.

All Residential Tenancy Agreements in British Columbia are bound by the Residential Tenancy Act (RTA). Simply put, landlords can ask tenants to sign whatever agreement they want; however, it becomes null and void if it is not aligned with the Residential Tenancy Act. In addition, the Residential Tenancy Branch (RTB) helps facilitate all questions and information relating to the Act.

As experienced Property Managers for residential buildings, we are very familiar with the Act and the specific responsibilities of the landlord and tenant. We also think there is great value in our clients being familiar with the Act and how we navigate it for you.

The RTB does provide landlords with a Tenancy Agreement template, however, these are heavily weighted towards the tenant’s viewpoint. At Custom Realty, we have prepared a Standard Form Residential Agreement that puts more weight on the landlord’s side. We are constantly updating our agreement to meet the ever-changing needs of our society, including comments regarding growing marijuana, short-term rentals and business usage in residential units.

Here are some other important details in the RTA regarding residential tenancy that we can confidently handle for you.

Rental Increase: The RTA determines a set amount annually for allowable increases. A specific form must be used to enforce a rent increase, with direct instructions on how to complete and serve the notice.

Breach Notices: The residential agreement is filled with detailed terms and conditions. Suppose the tenant is not adhering to any of the terms (e.g. adequate insurance, proper use, or disobeying the noise restrictions). In that case, we follow the protocol as laid out to provide a proper breach notice resulting in an eventual eviction of 1 month due to cause.

Termination Notice: Landlords cannot terminate any tenancy without specific reasons. The RTA has a set process that we must follow, with specific forms and timelines.

Non-Payment of Rent: As frustrating as this situation can be, a landlord cannot simply change the locks over a non-payment. The RTA has a set process for non-payment of rent and a detailed process for gaining possession and rights to be able to collect back rent.

RTB Hearing: If there is a conflict between the landlord and tenant that cannot be resolved effectively by both parties, this will lead to an RTB hearing. (See this blog for more details.)

We hope this has provided some insight into the RTA. As your Property Managers, we are always here to help navigate all the details and paperwork required by the RTA to ensure your position is as stress-free as possible.

Your Investment. Our Priority.

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