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5 steps to avoid the tenant from hell

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Canadian Realestate Magazine | 17 Feb 2015, 08:57 AM Agree 0
Dustin Graham sets out five steps investors must take to identify the problem tenants that seep through the cracks.
  • Jon | 19 Feb 2015, 06:17 PM Agree 0
    Following the some of the advice given in the above article (while it seems sensible), could result in Ontario Landlords violating the Ontario Human Rights Housing Policy.

    For instance, Ontario landlords are NOT allowed to require a tenant applying to rent be employed.

    "Requirements that applicants be employed on a permanent basis or satisfy a criterion of minimum tenure with an employer have been found to discriminate on Code grounds"

    "it is the OHRC’s position that landlords may only verify the fact that the prospective tenant has a source of income, but they may not assess or judge the source type. In other words, landlords are not permitted to discriminate against a prospective tenant because they do not approve of the source of the person’s income (e.g. Ontario Works). "

    Also, using a rent to income ratio seems perfectly reasonable and in fact responsible when screening tenants, the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal prohibits this:

    "It has been and still is a common practice for landlords to assess prospective tenants by applying income ratios (e.g., no more than 30% of a tenant’s income should be required to pay the rent). This practice was assessed in Shelter Corp. v. Ontario151 and found to have a systemic impact on a range of groups identified by Code grounds.152 An Ontario human rights tribunal found that these practices were not bona fide requirements because they had no value in predicting whether a tenant would default on the rent. The later addition of section 21(3) to the Code and the enactment of Regulation 290/98 do not permit landlords to apply income ratios, as has been clarified in a later decision of the tribunal.153 This means that landlords must only assess whether an applicant has enough income to pay the rent. They must not assess whether the balance of an applicant’s remaining income is adequate for non-housing related expenses. "
    • Rick | 01 Mar 2015, 11:24 PM Agree 0
      You're assuming someone, like myself as a landlord, is making a decision on a tenant based on a single fact (income ratios). It's often more than that. I know my rights as a landlord and I can ask for income, employment history, etc as long as it doesn't contravene the rights of a tenant under Section 2 of the Human Rights Code. I am also familiar that according to the OHRC a person can subject 100% of their income to rental housing. In reality, if I notice someone is doing this then I am bound to find other red flags, which would undoubtably lead to a rejection. As a landlord, I follow the law, but I will always protect my investment.
  • duncan | 20 Feb 2015, 08:53 PM Agree 0
    If Ontario businesses , like banks, car dealerships etc ever had to rely on Ontario legislators/ human rights groups etc to give them business advice or set standards / guidelines in which to follow... Well Ontario would just be bankrupt. I will be a landlord in alberta but Ontario, you can have Ontario. Duncan
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