Posts Tagged ‘Landlord Services’

Tenants Start a Grow Op? In Ontario, the Landlord Pays the Bill! 10 Tips To Protect Yourself and Save You Money

Saturday, November 24th, 2012

 November 24th, 2012

If Your Tenants Get Charged For Having a Grow Op in Ontario the Bill Will Go to the Landlord So Make Sure You Read These Tips to Save You a Headache and Money

According to a news article at Yorkregion.com, councillors in Markham, Ontario and York Region Police have come up with a new plan to get landlords to pay the bill for tenants who start grow-ops in a rental property. This is another reason why tenant screening is of vital importance for small landlords.

What are the Details of this Plan?

The goal of the plan is to stop the number of grow-ops in the region.

York Regional Police will first charge the landlord an administration fee of $1,000. This will be part of the fees paid to remove any illegal drugs, fix any tampering with hydro metres, remove booby-traps and vent the home to improve the quality of air in the unit.

Will the Landlord Have to Pay for The Actual Investigation?

No.

The Mayor of Markham Frank Scarpittle said the fees will only be charged for the actual ‘clean up’ of the property

What if the Landlord Doesn’t Pay?

The fees will be sent to the landlord. If the landlord doesn’t pay voluntarily, the bill will be put on their property taxes.

Are Grow Ops a Big Problem in York Region?

Yes.

In 2010 there were 39 grow-ops growign marijuana in York Region.  There were 30 last year and already 23 this year.

Also, there have been 9 illegal chemical grow ops found in the past three years.

How Can A Landlord Know Their Tenants Have a Grow-Op?

A few councillors were hesitant to make landlords responsible when it’s the tenants who control their own utilities. This makes it difficult for landlords to know if there are grow ops in their investment properties.

That’s Right. And Tenants Can Take the Landlord To the Landlord and Tenant Board For Harassment

There are sure signs of an illegal grow-op, such as blacked out windows, no garbage or recycling placed on the curb, lack of snow on the roof and frequent visitors at irregular hours. If you have tenants who you suspect may be up to no good it’s important to get experienced professionals to help you deal with them…before the police do (and you pay).

Here are some tips:

1. Tenant Screening

Make sure you know who you are renting to. If possible, do a check on the potential tenant to see if they have any criminal background.

2. Tenant Insurance

Make sure you see proof tenants have insurance before handing over the key. Put this in your lease.

3. Monitor Your Rental Property

Do regular drive-bys. Make regular inspections part of your lease.

4. Utilities

If your tenants are going to pay for their own utility usage, make sure you know which tenant is going to have the account in their name.

5. Neighbours

Get to know your neighbours. Give them your contact information in case they see anything suspicious going on.

Here are some suspicious things you should always be aware of:

6. Is Anyone Home

If your rental property doesn’t look like anyone is actually living there, it’s a red flag.

7. Visitors

Are there visitors at strange hours?

8. Windows

Are windows (especially in the basement) boarded up?

9. What Stinks?

Are there any strange smells coming from the property?  Particularly anything smelling something similar to a skunk.

10. Hydro Metres

Has anyone messed with the hydro metres?

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The Message is Clear: Ontario Landlords Have More Responsibilities Than Ever Before. Tenants Start a Grow Op and the Landlord Pays. Use these 10 Tips to Avoid Grow Ops In Your Investment Property!

Ontario Landlord Angry As Tenant Leaves a Disaster

Thursday, November 15th, 2012

November 15th, 2012

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 Ontario Landlord Is Left With Huge Damages As Tenant Runs and Leaves a Disaster Behind

Meet landlord Jean-Guy Lecours. He’s a small business landlord with only one rental property.

What Happened?

Jen-Guy entered his rental property last month and was shocked at what he saw.

Oh No, I’ve Heard This Story Before

1 – He entered his house and saw the new light carpet he bought  now looked like  dirty soot.

2 – He saw the handles for the new windows he installed were ripped off. (And windows aren’t cheap!)

3 – He saw cigarette buttes mashed in the property furnace vents.

What Did He Do?

He told the tenants the property was a ‘pigpen’ and demanded they clean in and do the repairs.

Did They Do It?

No.

The landlord was forced to evict the tenants.

Who Were the Tenants?

They were a single mom with two kids and her ‘partner.’  The landlord eventually managed to evict them.

So His Problem Was Solved With the Eviction?

No, not at all.

The tenants left major damage to the property. The landlord has quotes of between $12,000 to up to $15,000 to get the property back to how it was before those tenants moved in. We’ve seen these kind of issues before.

Anything Else?

Yes.

The tenants owe him nearly $500 for the hydro bill and the city of Sarnia is going to charge him for collecting all the garbage.

How Much Garbage Was There?

Sarnia garbage collectors had to haul over sixty bags of garbage and old abandoned furniture after neighbours were disgusted and demanded it be cleaned up.

Surely He Can Get the Ex-Tenants to Pay for What They Did

The landlord is very pessimistic of every collecting.

Why Not Go the the Ontario Landlord and Tenant Board?

When a tenant leaves a rental, the landlord can no longer go to the LTB.

So What Can He Do?

His only option is to go to Small Claims Court. However that is very difficult because the landlord must now track down the tenants to serve them.

Why Did Lecours Rent to These Tenants?

The landlord and his wife knew the tenants from their local church. The told him they needed a home to live in and assured him they would be great tenants. He fell for all the tricks which he would have avoided with a professional property management firm.

Despite some conflict during their tenancy, the landlord tried to be flexible to the tenants.  He even loaned them his mobile home so they could have a nice summer vacation.

What’s the State of the Property Now?

The landlords’ wife has been spending her days getting rid of garbage and cleaning the pigpen.

Will Lecours Continue to Be a Landlord?

Yes, although he promises to be careful when choosing tenants. He will begin doing employment and credit checks.

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This Is Another Warning Call to Ontario Landlords! Make Sure You Do Proper Tenant Screening and Do Credit Checks Before Handing Over the Key!