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A B.C. landlord asked for double the rent and then tried to kick out their tenant

The tenant said the landlord's notice came just one month after a jaw-dropping rental increase request.
The Residential Tenancy Branch said the B.C. landlord did not prove they acted in "good faith" when they issued a Two Month Notice to their tenant.

A B.C. landlord lost the right to end a tenancy for their personal use after they requested their tenant start paying over double the current rent.

The tenancy started in 2013 with a monthly rent due of $650. On Sept. 15, 2023, the landlord issued a two-month notice to end the tenancy because they wanted to start using the unit for their personal use. 

The landlord suffered a minor stroke in the spring and had trouble with the stairs they used to go to the bathroom from their bedroom. They planned to take over the rental unit as additional living space and also to access the bathroom on the main floor.

But the tenant said the landlord's notice came just one month after a jaw-dropping rental increase request.

The tenant said the landlord requested a rent increase from $650 to $1,500 in August 2023 and told them they could "get $1,800.00 per month rent for the rental unit in today’s market."

Tenant refuses to pay exorbitant rent increase

After the tenant refused to pay the significant rent increase, the landlord asked them to move out on Sept. 1. The tenant informed the landlord that they'd need to issue a notice to end the tenancy, which the landlord did on Sept. 15. 

The tenant believed the landlord was not acting in "good faith" and issued the notice so they could renovate the unit and then re-rent it at a much higher rate. 

According to Section 49 of the Residential Tenancy Act (RTA), a landlord may end a tenancy if the landlord or a close family member is going to occupy the rental unit.

In residential tenancy disputes, a landlord must prove they are acting in good faith when the "issue of an ulterior motive or purpose for ending a tenancy is raised, "the landlord has the burden to prove that they are acting in good faith," according to the Residential Tenancy Branch (RTB).

In its ruling, the RTB noted that the timing of the notice to end the tenancy was suspicious and called the landlord's motive into question. The landlord didn't deny requesting the rent increase or provide any evidence to show that they acted in good faith; they also didn't provide evidence of their medical problems or plans to renovate the rental unit to make it more accessible, despite stating that they intended to do this. 

The RTB granted the renter's application to cancel the two-month notice.