News

Check out the latest Residential Tenancy Branch news items.

 

Change to Monetary Claims Limit

June 1, 2017

As a result of the recent increase of monetary limit for claims under the Small Claims Act, the Residential Tenancy Branch may now hear disputes that involve a monetary claim of up to $35 000.00.  

The Residential Tenancy Branch adjudicates disputes between landlords and tenants that do not exceed the monetary limit for claims under the Small Claims Act. This authority is provided by section 51 of the Manufactured Home Park Tenancy Act and section 58 of the Residential Tenancy Act.

The monetary limit for claims under the Small Claims Act is increased from $25 000.00 to $35 000.00, effective June 1, 2017.

January 3, 2017

The 2017 deposit interest rate is 0.0%.

The interest rate for deposits is set according to the Residential Tenancy regulation part 1, section 4.

Interest payable on security deposits and pet damage deposits

4 The rate of interest under section 38 (1) (c) of the Act [return of deposits] that is payable to a tenant on a security deposit or pet damage deposit is 4.5% below the prime lending rate of the principal banker to the Province on the first day of each calendar year, compounded annually.

The current prime lending rate of the principal banker to the Province is 2.70%.

December 19, 2016
Changes to the Residential Tenancy Act allow landlords to return security and pet deposits electronically to tenants.
 
If a landlord returns a deposit to the tenant by electronic means, they can't charge the tenant a fee for doing so.
December 12, 2016
Changes to the Residential Tenancy Regulation (External Link) address concerns raised by landlords and tenants.  The changes provide a definition of transitional housing and give housing providers greater ability to ensure safety and security for tenants and staff.  The Regulation changes also allow for the continued and expanded use of rent-geared-to-income housing.
The specific Regulation changes are described below:
  • Section 1 (External Link) is amended to provide a definition of transitional housing that clarifies what kind of housing is considered “transitional” and therefore excluded from the Residential Tenancy Act’s jurisdiction.
  • Section 2 (External Link) is amended to allow existing rent-geared-to-income housing programs to continue after their operating agreements expire, and to allow new rent-geared-to-income housing to be operated under agreements with municipalities or districts.
  • Section 9 of the Schedule (External Link) is amended to support housing providers who serve at-risk populations by providing landlords the authority to make reasonable restrictions on guests’ use of common areas of rental property.  This change also addresses concerns raised by tenants.
December 5, 2016
Changes to the Residential Tenancy Act allow for the early end to a fixed-term tenancy, commonly known as a lease, by a tenant who is fleeing family violence or who has been accepted into a long-term care facility. This will make it easier for tenants who fear for their or their children’s safety to end the fixed-term tenancy agreement, along with people eligible for, or accepted into, long-term care.
August 22, 2016
Residential tenancy rent increases that take effect in 2017 are allowed to a maximum of 3.7%.
Manufactured home park tenancy rent increases that take effect in 2017 are allowed to a maximum of 3.7% plus a proportional amount.
July 22, 2016
Policy Guideline 19: Assignment and Sublet was updated on July 22, 2016.  

The revised policy clarifies how the Residential Tenancy Act applies to sublets.  Roommates who have an agreement with a tenant, but not with the landlord, do not have recourse through the Residential Tenancy Branch as there is no contractual relationship between the roommate and the landlord. 
Tenancy agreements are an important tool to protect both landlords and tenants.

 

The content on this website is periodically reviewed and updated by the Province of British Columbia as per the date noted on each page: June 1, 2017.

 

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