Legal Issues Regarding Property Rental In BC

30 06 2009

by: Ryan Chahl

Our social innovation needs to consider different funding options. Our first option is to approach the church or community organization and ask them to fund the housing unit. The second option is to consider a property management scheme, where we would look for investors who would pool their money in order to purchase a piece of property together.  The investors would be able to have a safe investment in the form of the appreciating property as well as the $375 per month for each client who stays at the place as this is the amount of government assistance that is available for housing for one person.

Here is an overview of some legal issues we might encounter.

The length of time we rent a unit for can be any amount of time, this is decided upon in the contract.

The usual standard for this is the tenant takes a years lease of the property and once this is complete they can either re-new the contract or move to a month to month basis. The issue we will have with this is the fact the rent is for one year, for our purpose it would be a lot safer if we could go from month to month right from the start. Most landlords would not agree to a contract that give the tenants so much power but as we are a non profit organization trying to help people we may be able to find someone who is willing to do this as a gesture of good will.

Can we can terminate the rental agreement without a penalty?

The answer to this is almost always no unless the lease is up. The best way to resolve this is to push for the month to month rental agreement so we are not tied down to the property for a long period of time. If we can’t find anyone who is willing to do this type of rental agreement we will have to try and put a clause in the contract that allows us to terminate the contract after a period of time we are comfortable with. Once again this is not normally done but we will be trying to use our non profit organization to gain support.

How much will our rent be?

This is going to be one of the biggest challenges we will face. Rental prices are lower in the tri-cities are compared to many other places in Grater Vancouver but this does not mean they are cheap. We will be trying to find a landlord who is willing to rent at a very low cost and we believe the best way to do this is by searching for people at church venues where people are open to helping people who are less fortunate than themselves.

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