Residential Tenancies Act: legislative changes
Overview of legislation changes to the Residential Tenancies Act that impact landlords and tenants. Changes came into effect 26 June 2019.
Legislative changes to the Residential Tenancies Act. Changes came into effect 26 June 2019.
|Counting days and months||The Counting Days Policy provides clarification on how to calculate certain time periods under the Residential Tenancies Act.
When you need to give notice under the Residential Tenancies Act based on a period of 1 or more months, you need to give the notice before the day of the month that rent is due. For example, if you need to give a month’s notice to end your tenancy (lease) on December 31, you need to give the notice on or before November 30.
|Tenants’ abandoned personal property||Landlords can now dispose of tenants’ abandoned property after 30 days with permission from the Residential Tenancies Program. Before, landlords had to store abandoned property for 60 days.
Landlords can immediately dispose of abandoned personal property if:
|Guarantee agreements between landlords and guarantors (co-signers)||Landlords and guarantors (co-signers) can now enter into agreements on a tenancy (lease).|
|Landlord entering premises for showings during a fixed-term lease||
The Residential Tenancies Act now specifies when landlords can show residential premises to prospective tenants during a fixed-term tenancy (lease). These guidelines were already in place for year-to-year and month-to-month tenancies (leases).
Landlords can only enter the premises to show it to prospective tenants at reasonable hours after notice of termination of the tenancy (lease) has been given or if:
|Assignments and sublets||There are new rules, rights and responsibilities for landlords and tenants when subletting or assigning a lease for residential premises, including apartments and houses.
A tenant may assign or sublet a residential premises, with consent from the landlord. The landlord can’t unreasonably withhold consent or charge the tenant for consent unless the landlord has actually incurred costs in giving the consent. The same tenancy (lease) terms and conditions continue to apply to the new tenant.
If a tenant sublets a residential premises to someone else:
|Ending a tenancy when a tenant passes away||The Residential Tenancies Act now specifies that a tenancy (lease) ends at the end of the month following the month a tenant passes away when there are no other tenants in the residential premises. For example, if a tenant passes away on 15 June, the tenancy (lease) automatically ends on 31 July.
There is no longer a requirement for a personal representative of the deceased tenant to provide notice to the landlord to end the tenancy (lease).
|Filing a counterclaim||A party to an active application may file a counterclaim with the Director of Residential Tenancies even if a 1-year period has passed since a tenancy (lease) ended.|
|Service of documents||The Residential Tenancies Act now includes new methods to serve documents on other parties to an application to director. These methods include:
Landlords and tenants can serve each other documents and notices by email if they included their email addresses in sections 7 and 7A in the new residential lease agreements.
Tenants and landlords with existing leases have 2 options if they want to serve each other by email:
All other documents under the Residential Tenancies Act can be served by the same methods used to serve documents on other parties to an application to director and by the following methods:
|Submitting evidence for use at a hearing||Parties need to submit evidence to each other and the Residential Tenancies Program 5 days before the hearing, unless the Director of Residential Tenancies allows a later date.|
Questions about the changes
Residential Tenancies can answer questions about the changes to the act and regulations.