eviction lawyers for tenants

Landlord & Tenant Issues

Landlord & Tenant Lawyers in Coquitlam

As British Columbia has one of the most competitive rental markets, it is common for landlord and tenant issues to arise. Whether you are a landlord or tenant, it is imperative that you understand your rights and responsibilities at the start, during and at the end of a tenancy. We regularly assist rental property owners, rental property managers, landlords and tenants throughout the Lower Mainland navigate the landlord tenant relationship.

Our lawyers offer services ranging from advising on the Residential Tenancy Act and Regulations to full representation before the Residential Tenancy Branch. We recognize the importance of your home and your property, and we strive to achieve efficient and cost-effective results for all our clients.

In an expensive market with low vacancy rates, such as the Lower Mainland and much of British Columbia, anxiety related to one’s home can be all-consuming, however, renters have legal rights. Unfortunately, current market conditions provide incentive for landlords to sometimes behave improperly and illegally. Our lawyers offer services ranging from advising on the Residential Tenancy Act and Regulations to full representation before the Residential Tenancy Branch.  A residential tenancy lawyer can explain and help you enforce your rights.

Tenants: What you need to know

Under BC’s residential tenancy law, tenants are responsible for:

  • paying rent and other fees in the tenancy agreement on time
  • maintaining reasonable health, cleanliness and sanitary standards of the rental unit and common areas
  • repairing any damage, they or their guests cause, as soon as possible (this does not include reasonable wear and tear)
  • telling the landlord of any needed repairs or problems, such as mice, cockroaches, or bedbugs
  • not disturbing other people living in the building or neighbouring property and not letting guests do so either 

Most residential tenancies in British Columbia are covered by the Residential Tenancy Act (RTA). This Act establishes rights of tenants and responsibilities of landlords. There are numerous protections for tenants.

A common problem for tenants in the Lower Mainland is “renoviction”. A renoviction occurs where a tenant is evicted so that the landlord can renovate the home. The RTA permits renoviction, but only in very specific circumstances, and it is often abused by landlords. For example, a landlord may claim that they are making “major renovations” that require a unit to be empty for an extended period of time, when in actuality, they are only painting or installing new floors. This is not permitted under the law.

Another common occurrence of renoviction is when a home is purchased and the new owner claims that a family member will live in the unit, which can be a legal eviction, but it is then renovated and flipped instead. These actions are illegal, and tenants have remedies available. A lawyer knowledgeable in tenancy law can help tenants avoid eviction or obtain compensation for wrongful eviction.

Landlords have many additional obligations under the RTA. Issues that frequently arise, and that a lawyer can assist with, are:

  • Landlords improperly entering the unit
  • Landlords failing to make repairs
  • Landlord refusing to allow you to sublet your unit
  • Landlord improperly keeping security deposit
  • Improper rent increase

For renoviction and other types of eviction, there are very short and strict timelines for disputing eviction notices. A Spraggs Law lawyer can assist you with completing the appropriate forms and ensure you meet the required deadlines.


Landlords: What you need to know

A Landlord plays many roles during the life of a tenancy. Regardless of how well you screen tenants and how clear your residential tenant agreements are, sometimes issues arise that may not be solved without the assistance of a lawyer.

As a Landlords you are responsible for:

    • making sure the rental unit and the building meet the health, safety and housing standards required by law;
    • making repairs and keeping the rental unit and building in good condition
    • paying the utility bills if utilities are included in the rent
    • investigate any complaints about disturbances
    • ensure the Tenant’s right to quiet enjoyment and peaceful occupation of the premises is respected
    • ensuring the rental unit and building has proper heating, plumbing, electricity, locks, walls, floors, and ceilings (with no water leaks or holes)
    • maintaining anything included in the tenancy agreement, such as the fridge, stove, laundry facilities, garages, and storage sheds

At Spraggs Law, we assist Landlords in navigating the laws and regulations of the Residential Tenancy Act and Regulations and if needed full representation before the Residential Tenancy Branch.

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Why choose a Spraggs Law Landlord & Tenant Issues lawyer in Coquitlam?

We win when our client win. At Spraggs Law, we strive to achieve the best possible results for our clients. We listen to our clients’ needs and craft a legal strategy to help achieve their goals. Our collaborative practice allows us to leverage each other’s strengths and dedicate everyone’s collective knowledge and skill to attaining results for our clients. Team matters.

If you have a problem with your landlord/tenant, Spraggs Law can help. Contact us now to explore your legal options.