Real Estate

Advice: Issue with tenants

  • Last Updated:
  • Feb 6th, 2021 10:34 am
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[OP]
Newbie
Feb 3, 2021
4 posts

Advice: Issue with tenants

Hi I bought my first house last year and the basement was rented out to someone by previous owners, they were students so they keep switching.
The previous owner asked if they can continue staying, I didn’t think much of it and it will help me pay my mortgage, so I said sure.
Now there is someone else staying at the place, and they paid first and last months rent, they replaced some on Jan.
This new person is said my unit is not up to the code and it’s illegal, I didn’t know about all this and did some research.
So I asked the person to leave and I would give their rent back so I can find a contractor to do the needed to make it legal. They are refusing to leave and told me they will only pay 1/4 of the rent going forward or they will contact the city and report me, and that I’ll be fined 25k.

I’m already in a financial hardship due to pandemic, I’m worried that I’ll be fined now. Need some advise on how to deal with this

Thanks.
29 replies
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jan 2, 2012
3979 posts
1847 upvotes
Toronto
You need to give a location to get any relevant advice.
Deal Addict
Dec 18, 2006
2003 posts
398 upvotes
Markham
Ryan5199 wrote: Hi I bought my first house last year and the basement was rented out to someone by previous owners, they were students so they keep switching.
The previous owner asked if they can continue staying, I didn’t think much of it and it will help me pay my mortgage, so I said sure.
Now there is someone else staying at the place, and they paid first and last months rent, they replaced some on Jan.
This new person is said my unit is not up to the code and it’s illegal, I didn’t know about all this and did some research.
So I asked the person to leave and I would give their rent back so I can find a contractor to do the needed to make it legal. They are refusing to leave and told me they will only pay 1/4 of the rent going forward or they will contact the city and report me, and that I’ll be fined 25k.

I’m already in a financial hardship due to pandemic, I’m worried that I’ll be fined now. Need some advise on how to deal with this

Thanks.
Did you sign any documentation with them or enter into a documented fixed term lease?
Jay Rana |
Sales Representative, CENTURY 21 Titans Realty Inc. Brokerage
[OP]
Newbie
Feb 3, 2021
4 posts
y2jversion1 wrote: Did you sign any documentation with them or enter into a documented fixed term lease?
No I haven't, they are students I think some stay for 3 months others longer. They pay month to month
Deal Addict
Feb 4, 2010
4177 posts
2957 upvotes
Seems like extortion/blackmail. He just happens to know you're not to code - how? What is not up to code? My advice do NOT give into him, this guy seems like a unethical turd.
Deal Addict
Dec 18, 2006
2003 posts
398 upvotes
Markham
Technically as they are on month-to-month and not on a fixed term agreement, an n13 may be able to be enforced *HOWEVER*, you'd have to evict all of the occupants to avoid any legal issues - from what I'm reading.

https://tribunalsontario.ca/documents/l ... ns/N13.pdf

Your first mistake was not having any documentation with anyone, and your current tenant took advantage of you. Regardless of it being students or whoever, get the documentation signed/completed along with the Ontario Standard Lease Agreement: http://www.forms.ssb.gov.on.ca/mbs/ssb/ ... /2229E.pdf

Please note that with the eviction, you may be required to provide compensation to the tenant(s) for alternative accommodation (up to 1 month's rent) or provide them alternative accommodation. Furthermore, the tenant(s) may opt to have the right to return upon the completion of the repairs.

^^^^^
That is if you want to go through the N13 route, otherwise you can try via the N12 route (immediate family moving in), however the compensation/alternative accommodation would still remain in this situation as well.

N12: https://tribunalsontario.ca/documents/l ... ns/N12.pdf

*****
Here is the 'complaint' process from the Province for your reference - https://www.ontario.ca/page/solve-disag ... -or-tenant

If you don't mind disclosing, what did they say was not up to code? Based on your high level research, what would the cost of remediation be? Just asking because you don't want to run into a similar situation down the road.


Good luck.
Jay Rana |
Sales Representative, CENTURY 21 Titans Realty Inc. Brokerage
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jan 2, 2012
3979 posts
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Toronto
Ryan5199 wrote: No I haven't, they are students I think some stay for 3 months others longer. They pay month to month
If your illegal basement appt is reported, the fire department responds and you can indeed face some serious fines ($50K) and prison time, although I'm sure those are for extreme cases. Some info here, there is a section for Ontario and then Brampton in specific: http://www.thefutureyouwant.ca/legal-basement-apartment

You can't simply get a contractor to make the basement legal. You also need to pull permits from the city and have everything inspected and approved as an apartment. This could involve tearing down some of the basement for inspectors to access electrical, plumbing, etc.

The current tenants living there have rights, even if they are month to month and no lease was signed. I don't think the basement being illegal is in itself a reason to evict, the fire department or city would have to deem it unsafe and force the tenants out, which I'm not sure if they do or not.

To evict them yourself you'll need to go through the LTB. You can use an N12 for personal use if you don't want to bother renting out the basement anymore and just want to use yourself for at least the next 1 year. Or you can use an N13 to evict for renovations, but this requires 120 days notice to the tenant before they need to leave.
Deal Guru
User avatar
Mar 23, 2008
11906 posts
8172 upvotes
Edmonton
Ryan5199 wrote: Hi I bought my first house last year and the basement was rented out to someone by previous owners, they were students so they keep switching.
The previous owner asked if they can continue staying, I didn’t think much of it and it will help me pay my mortgage, so I said sure.
Now there is someone else staying at the place, and they paid first and last months rent, they replaced some on Jan.
This new person is said my unit is not up to the code and it’s illegal, I didn’t know about all this and did some research.
So I asked the person to leave and I would give their rent back so I can find a contractor to do the needed to make it legal. They are refusing to leave and told me they will only pay 1/4 of the rent going forward or they will contact the city and report me, and that I’ll be fined 25k.

I’m already in a financial hardship due to pandemic, I’m worried that I’ll be fined now. Need some advise on how to deal with this

Thanks.
If you want to be a landlord, you better get yourself some education real quick, before you get schooled even more by your tenants. You make it sound like people are moving in and out, but it doesn't seem like you have any documentation or signed agreements?

Frankly, I'd look at evicting the lot of them for "renovations" or personal use, and go from there. It will mean going without rental income for awhile, but then you can start over fresh if you want to go back to being a landlord.

C
Member
Jun 10, 2008
461 posts
331 upvotes
Halton Hills
N12 for personal use. You'll have to give 60 days notice and pay out 1 months rent. It will take a lot longer than 60 days if they challenge it or just don't move due to eviction freeze. Also you cannot rent it out again for at lease 1 year.
Jr. Member
Dec 5, 2017
189 posts
149 upvotes
Where are these renters coming from? Are you vetting them? It almost sounds like someone else is managing this and you are not in the know.
Deal Addict
Sep 13, 2016
2657 posts
1436 upvotes
Mississauga
Two things OP:
> Use N12 and evict them for personal use. Do not rent for a year once they are out.
> If you want to be in this renting business, learn the rules of the game. Educate yourself on the laws, on rights and duties of landlord as well as tenants.
Last edited by IndyBeak on Feb 4th, 2021 12:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Sr. Member
Aug 7, 2005
883 posts
265 upvotes
Toronto
I'd fight this on multiple fronts.

If the tenant believes he/she should be paying less due to issues, they need to bring it to the board.

If any rent is unpaid absolutely start the process of eviction due to non-payment. Make sure you provide the tenant with an N4 notice and follow the process.

If you go with the N12 process you can't rent the space out for a year after the tenant leaves. This is to stop landlords from misusing the N12 process.

Call landlordselfhelp

https://landlordselfhelp.com/
Deal Addict
Dec 18, 2006
2003 posts
398 upvotes
Markham
Spiritwalker2222 wrote: Where are these renters coming from? Are you vetting them? It almost sounds like someone else is managing this and you are not in the know.
Often times with international students, they end up "managing" themselves and end up swapping in tenants as they please - usually because of lack of oversight or enforcement of the landlord. Unfortunately many people think being a landlord is a hands-off business and it's them who get burned with some of the worst tenants. Just like any business, a landlord needs to be hands-on or hire a property manager, that can do scheduled drop-ins etc. These terms (scheduled drop-ins) should also be built into the lease agreement.
Jay Rana |
Sales Representative, CENTURY 21 Titans Realty Inc. Brokerage
Deal Addict
Mar 20, 2017
1309 posts
1091 upvotes
Get an experienced property manager and never again work with your agent who allowed this to happen and didn't explain the risks.
[OP]
Newbie
Feb 3, 2021
4 posts
y2jversion1 wrote: Technically as they are on month-to-month and not on a fixed term agreement, an n13 may be able to be enforced *HOWEVER*, you'd have to evict all of the occupants to avoid any legal issues - from what I'm reading.

https://tribunalsontario.ca/documents/l ... ns/N13.pdf

Your first mistake was not having any documentation with anyone, and your current tenant took advantage of you. Regardless of it being students or whoever, get the documentation signed/completed along with the Ontario Standard Lease Agreement: http://www.forms.ssb.gov.on.ca/mbs/ssb/ ... /2229E.pdf

Please note that with the eviction, you may be required to provide compensation to the tenant(s) for alternative accommodation (up to 1 month's rent) or provide them alternative accommodation. Furthermore, the tenant(s) may opt to have the right to return upon the completion of the repairs.

^^^^^
That is if you want to go through the N13 route, otherwise you can try via the N12 route (immediate family moving in), however the compensation/alternative accommodation would still remain in this situation as well.

N12: https://tribunalsontario.ca/documents/l ... ns/N12.pdf

*****
Here is the 'complaint' process from the Province for your reference - https://www.ontario.ca/page/solve-disag ... -or-tenant

If you don't mind disclosing, what did they say was not up to code? Based on your high level research, what would the cost of remediation be? Just asking because you don't want to run into a similar situation down the road.


Good luck.
Thank you for the information I'll go through them and see what works best.

From what I found the, only issue was that my second unit is not registered with city and doesn't have a permit.
Newbie
Aug 27, 2019
9 posts
3 upvotes
You need to hire a paralegal, so you can have proper representation. It will also give you a piece of mid. Good luck and best wishes!
Deal Expert
User avatar
Jan 27, 2004
44691 posts
7769 upvotes
T.O. Lotto Captain
ShaziaP85553 wrote: You need to hire a paralegal, so you can have proper representation. It will also give you a piece of mid. Good luck and best wishes!
True! Paralegal helps.

However if you are good @ carefully reading forms and following procedures... diy is okay too.
Jr. Member
Dec 12, 2011
197 posts
212 upvotes
Toronto
Sorry you are in this position OP. Guys please, if you are considering buying a house with a tenant already in it (someone you didnt screen yourself), understand that this is a situation that can happen to you.

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