Legislation Changes

Legislation Changes

If you are looking to purchase a home, what you have to consider is about to change.

This year has not been short of changes in the real estate industry.  With changes already made and now in effect for small scale multi unit housing and short term rental restrictions there is some new legislation this is set to come into effect on July 18th for landlords.

Even if you're not considering rental properties for an investment it will still impact you  if you're looking to purchase a home. The likelihood of encountering a tenanted property is increasing, which these changes could impact your purchase decision and timeframes. Currently, there are 3,381 residential properties listed on the market in the Central Okanagan. Of these, 1,880 are classified as owner-occupied. There are 439 properties currently tenanted, marking a 53% increase from last year's listings at this time.

The Provincial Government las week announced significant updates to tenancy laws that will impact your real estate investments in British Columbia. Effective July 18, 2024, these new regulations introduce stricter requirements for landlords, aiming to protect tenants from wrongful evictions. Understanding and complying with these changes is crucial to avoid penalties and maintain smooth operations especially for a new home buyer.

Another consideration is vacant properties, totaling 708 active listings currently unoccupied. Each property's circumstances may vary, but it's worth noting that homeowners typically prefer not to carry vacant properties for extended periods, often seeking tenants to help mitigate costs. It's important to bear in mind that these occupancy classifications may vary and should be verified accordingly.

Even if you don’t currently have a tenant but plan to purchase, if you buy a tenanted property this could affect timeframes in which you can take possession, notice periods the vendor will have to give the current tenants and an extension in notice periods the tenants will now have 30 days to dispute the notice keeps you in limbo for longer.  Assuming you get through that the notice duration for end of tenancy has doubled and is now 4 months.

This list is not meant to be all inclusive of all the changes but to highlight the key changes. If you are a landlord it may be worthwhile to get familiar with the new tenancy laws and seek legal advice where necessary. Here is a link to the media release.

Key Changes Effective July 18, 2024

1.Mandatory Use of New Web Portal:

  • Landlord Access: Landlords must now use a designated web portal to generate Notices to End Tenancy for personal or caretaker use. Access to this portal requires a Basic BCeID.
  • Transparency and Compliance: The portal requires landlords to provide detailed information about the new occupant, which will be shared with the tenant. Additionally, it outlines the conditions necessary to end a tenancy and the penalties for non-compliance.
  • Compensation: Landlords must also be aware of the compensation they are required to provide to tenants when ending a tenancy.

2.Extended Notice Period:

  • Notice Duration: The notice period for ending a tenancy has been extended from two months to four months.
  • Dispute Timeframe: Tenants now have 30 days, instead of the previous 15, to dispute Notices to End Tenancy.

3.Occupancy Requirements:

  • Minimum Occupancy: The new occupant must reside in the property for at least 12 months.
  • Bad Faith Penalty: Landlords found ending a tenancy in bad faith could be ordered to pay the displaced tenant 12 months’ rent.

Just more things to consider for home buyers next week, if you have any questions on the process, and impacts or how it applies to your situation as a landlord or buyer please reach out.

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