By: Jamie Berle, B.Comm., LLB, ACCI
I am thinking about renting my condominium unit. What steps must I take to rent my unit and what are the rights of the condominium corporation if I rent my unit?
The Condominium Property Act, 1993 provides rules with respect to renting condominium units in order to ensure that all unit holders’ interests are protected when a unit holder decides to rent their condominium unit. The Act provides guidelines for the owner, renter, and condominium corporation.
Owner’s Duty to Give Notice:
The Act provides that before an owner rents their unit they must give written notice to the condominium corporation of their intention to rent. This notice must set out the owner’s address for future correspondence.
Once the unit owner has rented the unit the Act states that within 20 days of the commencement of the tenancy the unit owner must give the condominium corporation written notice of the tenant’s name. The unit owner must also give written notice of the termination of the tenancy to the condominium corporation within 20 days of the end of the tenancy.
Renters’ Conditions of Tenancy:
To ensure the reasonable respect and care of tenants, the Act provides two default conditions of tenancy, which exist despite the lack of or anything to the contrary in the tenancy agreement. Firstly, the Act the provides tenants shall not cause damage to the real or personal property of the corporation or the common property or the common facilities, and secondly, the tenant shall not contravene the bylaws of the corporation.
Condominium Corporation Rights:
The Act provides a few rights for condominium corporations to ensure they protect all unit holders’ interests. The Act provides three important classes of rights, but it states that the rights do not exist unless the condominium corporation’s bylaws either generally or specifically provide for same. The rights are:
1. A condominium corporation can require the owner of a unit who rents the unit to pay to, and maintain with, the corporation a deposit in an amount that does not exceed the maximum amount of a security deposit pursuant to The Residential Tenancies Act.
This deposi then can be used by the condominium corporation for the maintenance, repair or replacement of any real of personal propery of the condominium corporation or any of the common property or common facilities or any of the common property for which an owner is permitted to exercise exclusive use over, that is damaged, destroyed, lost or removed by a tenant.
If a corporation does collect such a deposit, the following guidelines apply to the use of the deposit. Within twenty days of receiving notice of the termination of tenancy the corporation must either:
- return the deposit to the owner; or
- if the corporation has used the deposit they must deliver a statement of account to the owner showing the purpose, amount used and the balance; or
- if the corporation is entitled to use the deposit but has not yet determined the amount they will use they must provide the owner with an estimated statement of account outlining the amount it intends to use and then within sixty days provide a final statement showing the amount used, for what purpose, and the final balance.
2. A condominium corporation may apply to the Office of Residential Tenancies, pursuant to The Residential Tenancies Act, for an order for possession of a rented unit when the tenant causes excessive damage to the real or personal property of the corporation or to the common property or common facilities, causes excessive noise, or is a danger to or intimidates persons who reside in other units.
3. The condominium corporation also has a right with respect to collecting arrears owed by the owner. Where an owner is in arrears with respect to payments for the common fund or reserve fund respecting a unit that is occupied by a tenant or where the condominium corporation has obtained judgment against an owner to pay a certain sum, the corporation may give written notice to the tenant to pay the rent, otherwise payable to the owner, to the condominium corporation until the arrears or judgment is satisfied.
A review of your bylaws is suggested to ensure that these rights are available to your condominium corporation. If not currently available you may want to look at amending the condominium corporations bylaws to ensure that these rights are included.