Letter: It's too hard to evict delinquent tenants

Editor:

Re: Make it easier for landlords to evict tenants to ease rental crisis, Record letters, Dec. 13

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I am a building manager of over 20 years and my wife and I have lived in downtown New West for the past seven.

We have been in the building/property managing industry for decades in both apartment rentals and large strata buildings and have never written about these types of issues before.

We agree that the current Residential Tenancy Act needs an overhaul, to serve the interests of both renters and landlords.

We know of issues where the tenant abandoned their suite and the landlord was left to clean up the mess and also expected to apply by abandonment laws and then go through the process of getting rid of all their stuff. 

Who pays him for his time to deal and handle all that? Should renters be allowed to get away with this?

Similarly, trying to evict someone for legitimate reasons is such a long, drawn-out process that it takes money and time - weeks, and even months before a situation is fully resolved. In the meantime, the landlord is out a month or more rent money.

This totally frightens homeowners who could potentially rent out their suite, as they don't want to be in a situation whereby they can't get rid of their delinquent tenant and all the hassles and stress that that entails. And if it goes to arbitration, there's the added stress of ensuring the forms are filled out right.

However, on the flip side, there should absolutely be more legislation to discourage or address renovictions.

There are landlords who count on tenants’ ignorance and do things like give their tenants notice to vacate but deliberately refuse to mention to them that they are selling the unit, due to the fact they need to give them two-months’ notice, and either last month is free or they return last month’s rent. How is abuse of this aspect of the RTA addressed?

The whole process of renting and then exiting or moving, when issues that are slightly less than ideal occur, are getting more and more convoluted with numerous forms, that are, in essence meant to protect both the landlord and tenant but there are so many of them now which makes the process slow, expensive and unnecessarily cumbersome for both the landlords and tenants.

Additionally, the RTA is only as good as it is enforceable. It makes absolutely no sense to have all these wonderful by-laws yet no way of enforcing them and thereby no consequence to either a renter or landlord to comply.

These abuses and loopholes need to be properly addressed to bring a sense of balance to both landlords right to protect their investment and property and tenants’ rights to being feel free from abuse or threat of being evicted for no legit reason. Hopefully the new and improved RTA can be much more streamlined and practical for all. Especially when addressing disputes or issues.

Jorge Pailamilla, New Westminster

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