Things Leasing Agents Should Know: Security Deposits and Other Fees for Property Rentals in Canada

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Before going into renting, a tenant should know what it entails. Aside from the property itself, we must consider the cost. Renting a property is not cheap. Some are affordable, of course, but it will require a big chunk of your budget. But then again, having a place to live is a basic necessity. It boils down to how you can manage your finances. Some first-time tenants may wonder how much they would need. Is it enough to pay the rental fee every month?

You will encounter tenants who are not familiar with some of the additional fees, and that is why you must know what those are. Let’s take a look at some of the other costs of renting.

Security Deposit

At the start of a lease, a landlord will ask for a security deposit. In the Province of British Columbia, it should not exceed the value of half of a month’s rent. The security deposit will act as an emergency fund in cases of tenant damages and unpaid rent. Once the landlord receives the amount, it means they have established the tenancy.

But the tenants should not worry about it because the landlord will return it at the end of their lease. They only have to make sure they did not cause any damages and or left with unpaid rent.

Pet Deposit

Like in the US, landlords in Canada can also ask for a pet deposit or a pet damage deposit. Once they decide they will allow pets on their property, they should prepare for it. As cute as they are, some pets can break a few items. The amount of the deposit should not be more than half a month’s rent. But they would not need to account for the number of pets the tenant has.

However, there is an exception for this which started on the 1st of January 2004. A tenant who requires a service animal will not have to pay for the pet deposit. But for those who do, the amount will cover the damage expenses caused by pets.

Manufactured Home Parks Deposit

What about mobile home parks? Some tenants own the manufactured homes but pay rent for the site it is on. In cases like this, the landlord could not require a security and pet deposit. It is not the same if the tenant rents the site and the manufactured home under a tenancy agreement. They would have to pay for the security and pet deposit, which has the same rules as the standard tenancy. The landlord may also ask for proof of insurance from the tenant.

Other Fees Landlords Can Charge (Or Not)

• Fees during application

A landlord is not allowed to ask for payment for accepting and examining tenant applications.

• Fees for Moving

Sometimes a tenant will decide to move into a different unit in a multi-tenanted building. The landlord can charge a moving fee, but it should not be more than three percent of the monthly rent. They can also ask for a moving-in payment if required by the law.

• Fees for storage and parking

The landlord may charge for these fees if they include them in the lease agreement. Once they do, they cannot increase the amount more than the allowable rent. But if the costs belong to a separate agreement, there is no limit to how much a landlord can charge.

• Keys

If the tenant’s keys are the only access to the property, the landlord should not ask for an additional fee. However, he can charge a fee if the keys are not the only way to enter the residential unit, which he should refund once returned. The amount should not exceed the cost of obtaining a new key or accessive device.

The fees mentioned above are all necessary because they are for different purposes. The landlord has to secure himself from financial problems because of damages caused by others. It will also benefit the tenants because they would have money to pay for unexpected expenses. But landlords and tenants should not forget their responsibilities as well. For example, a tenant should pay the security deposit within 30 days upon entering the tenancy. On the other hand, the landlords should not ask for more than what is required.

Now that you know more about all the deposits and fees, the tenants can learn from you. Now, I think it’s time you go out there and find renters. But not literally. You can attract tenants even online. All you have to do is post your property listings in Padleads, syndicate them to other websites, and wait for potential tenants to reach out. Simple, fast, and practically effortless.

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