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Tenant Screening BC: Vacancy Rates & Tenant Credit Checks

· BC Landlord Credit Check, Kelowna landlords, Latest News, Okanagan Landlords, Vacancy Rate

 Tenant Screening BC Vacancy Rates & Tenant Credit Checks

Kelowna Landlords – Vacancy Rates Are Dropping But Don’t Drop Your Guard. Make Sure You Screen Your Tenants Carefully By Including a Tenant Credit Check!

There is some good news for landlords in our area.

It involves vacancy rates and the rising cost of renting an apartment.

According to a report in Kelowna Daily Courier it is more difficult for renters to find an apartment in the Okanagan in 2014 compared to last year.

The report provides figures from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMCH). A story in the Kelowna Cap News says it’s good news for landlords, and makes renting tougher for tenants.

Vacancy Rates

All over the area vacancy rates are down, in some please considerably.

1. Kelowna

Last year the vacancy rate was at 4.8%.

This year there has been real turnaround as the rate has dropped to only 1.5% This is really good news for local landlords looking for good tenants.

2. Penticton

The rate has gone down from 3.6% in 2013 to 2.9% now.

3. Vernon

Last year Vernon had a high vacancy rate of 7.7%.

The good news it’s now down to 4.1%.

Rents Are Going Up

Landlords can now charge higher rent than last year.

Let’s look at Kelowna where a two bedroom rental now goes for an average of $964/month. This is a rise of $17 from 2013.

A one bedroom unit is now at $759 compared to last year when the average rent was $775/month.

A bachelor rental unit was going renting for $592 in 2013. The price is now averaging $601/month.

Why Are Conditions Improving For Landlords?

Paul Fabri is with the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. He explains:

1. Condominiums are being sold due to the heated up housing market

2. This means less competition amongst landlords

3. There is less rental housing being built

4. More university and college students are now renting

5. There is job growth.

All in all this is really good news for landlords.

Rent To Good Tenants

Lower vacancy rates means more people applying to rent your property.

When you get lots of phone calls and emails from prospective tenants it can be exciting. After all, you have a mortgage to cover it feels good having a ‘hot property’ that many people want to live in (and pay you for it!)

It’s important that landlords don’t let your guard down.

Remember that there are bad tenants in BC who are very experienced at tricking landlords, moving in, and then stop paying rent.

Tenant Credit Checks

Make sure you check out your tenants carefully.

This should include a tenant credit check.

How Can A BC Landlord Run a Tenant Credit Check?

You can do it quickly and at a great price.

Join the British Columbia Landlords Association for only a one-time registration fee.

No annual fee and no hidden costs.

You can then start doing tenant credit checks for only $10/check.

You can also choose to run “full credit checks” which give you a huge amount of information on your potential renters.

Check out BC Landlord Credit Check for more information.

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Landlords British Columbia: How To Rent to Good Tenants

· Bad Tenants, Tenant Screening

 Serial Bad Tenants Force B.C. Landlords To Lose Thousands, Miss Mortgage Payments

Serial Bad Tenants Force B.C. Landlords To Lose Thousands, Miss Mortgage Payments

We’ve written before on the fact Kelowna landlords know the importance of good tenant screening.

There are a lot of good tenants out there.

Unfortunately there are also some tenants who know how to play the BC Residential Tenancy Branch and live rent free for months at a time.

Bad Tenants Who are Serial Abusers of the System

A report at the British Columbia Landlords site is important reading for all B.C. landlords.

It’s commentary on a story from CBC News about a couple who are “serial” bad tenants who jump from one rental property to another not paying rent.

Landlords Are Out Thousands of Dollars

According to the CBC News video two tenants have lived in five different rental properties over the past couple of years without paying rent.

Their last landlord is, Kim Gouws, is out over $5000.

Another former landlord of this couple lost over $7000 in non-paid rent.

Another of their former landlords was Noel Beaulieu. He said that during the eviction process the tenants were always one step ahead of him.

According to Beaulieu the non-paying tenants knew every aspect of how to play with the rules from the Residential Tenancy Branch. 

He explained how they even anticipated everything he was doing to attempt to evict them out of his rental property.

Tenant Screening and Credit Checks

One common theme of the five landlords who all didn’t receive any rent from these pro tenants is their lack of good tenant screening.

None of them did a landlord credit check on their tenants.

These days you cannot trust a potential tenant on their words alone.  It’s not only Ontario landlords who face bad tenants these days.

As property prices rise, more people are renting and that means more people are learning the rules and how to manipulate rental laws.

Even Alberta landlords are facing professional tenants and doing very careful tenant screening.

Protect Yourself and Your Rental Business

Fortunately, the B.C. Landlords Association offers members the highest quality credit checks out there for a very affordable price.

Unlike Landlord BC and other organizations who demand you pay an annual fee, the B.C. Landlords Association only charges a one-time fee to join and get access to all their amazing services!

Make sure rent to good tenants and protect yourself from the pro’s.

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Vernon Landlords: Secondary Suites 2014

· Bylaws, Okanagan Landlords, Vernon landlords

 Vernon landlords bylaws 2014

We would like to hope everyone has a great holiday and a happy and successful 2014.

We will continue to provide news, advice and networking for landlords in Kelowna and the rest of the region.

Emails With Questions

Over the past couple of months we’ve received emails from landlords from all over our part of the province.

Whether it’s from a newcomer to Canada who is now a Surrey landlord or people who are just thinking about becoming landlords in British Columbia, we welcome the questions and suggestions.

This includes emails from landlords in Vernon who have questions about potential policy changes in the new year.

According to the Vernon Morning Star vacancy rates in Vernon were up significantly in the latter half of 2013 compared to a year earlier.

The rate was was 6.8%.

This is higher than the average than other British Columbia landlords face.

The British Columbia average vacancy rate was 2.4 per cent in October 2013, down from 2.7 per cent in October 2012.

Vancouver landlords faced a vacancy rate of only 1.1%

Are There Any Big Changes in Store for Vernon Landlords in 2014?

First of all we have some good news for Vernon landlords.

You have a terrific Manager of Bylaw Enforcement in your city.

We contacted Clint Kanester, Manager of Bylaw Enforcement with our questions and he provided us with helpful information fast.

We hope the following information from Mr. Kanester is helpful for landlords.

If you require specific information make sure you contact him directly.

Question #1

Are Vernon landlords still going to be required to live in a property with a second suite?

The City currently still requires a landlord to live in a house containing a secondary suite, and of course to meet building code requirements, pay a business licence fee of $60.00 a year and pay utility fees.  

No suites are allowed in anything other than a SFD, but this is building code requirements, not a bylaw.

Question #2

Will there be any changes to this rule or any other rules to help small business landlords in the city?

Council over the years has reduced or removed just about every other fee and are looking at further reductions, in-law suite specific regulations, and perhaps removing the requirements for the owner to live in the home. 

Whether these fly or not has yet to be determined, as there appears to be councilors on both sides of that fence, as of course having an owner live in the home maintains a much higher control of the tenancy, and reduces conflict with the neighbourhood, etc… 

The resolution below has not been implemented yet, but is in the works for early 2014.



(OCP00058, ZON00212)

Moved by Councillor Cunningham, seconded by Councillor Nicol:

 THAT Council support amending Official Community Plan (OCP) Bylaw #5151, Zoning Bylaw #5000, Development Application Procedure Bylaw #4103, and Fees and Charges Bylaw #3909 in order to remove secondary use development permit regulations, procedures and processes and direct staff to prepare the associated bylaw amendments for Council’s consideration. By removing the secondary use development permit provisions, uses such as bed and breakfast; care centre, minor; care centre, major; group home, minor; home based business, major; secondary suites; seniors assisted housing and seniors supportive housing would be permitted in the applicable agricultural, residential and holding zoning districts, subject to specific regulations;

AND FURTHER, that Council support removing the secondary use development permits policy from the Corporate Policy Manual;

AND FURTHER, that Council support amending Zoning Bylaw #5000, Section 2.2.3 to add the following definition for in law secondary suites

IN LAW SECONDARY SUITE means a secondary suite which is occupied by an individual or individuals who do not provide rent to the property owner and are all related to the property owner by blood, marriage or adoption. The owner is to provide an annual declaration to the City confirming the occupier(s) do not pay rent and all occupier(s) are related to the property owner by blood, marriage or adoption.

AND FURTHER, that Council support amending the Fees and Charges Bylaw #3909 to include an annual owner declaration processing fee of $30.00 for an in law secondary suite.

        AND FURTHER, that Council support amending Zoning Bylaw #5000, Section 5.5.5 to increase the

       maximum percentage of floor area for a secondary suite within a primary building from 30% to 40%;

       AND FURTHER, that Council refer the proposed bylaw and policy amendments to the Advisory  

       Planning Committee (APC) and the Affordable Housing Advisory Committee (AHAC) for their review 

Question #3

Many landlords are interested in investing in more rentals in Vernon, is there any chance the landlords will be able to invest in rental properties they don’t intend to live in?

Not sure what else may be coming down the pipe for 2014, other than Planning is coming forward with a report, at Council and the Affordable Housing Committee’s request, that will provide Council with information related to requiring the owner occupancy of a suited property….

Again, staff are currently working on a report for Council related to this resolution….



 Moved by Councillor Cunningham, seconded by Councillor Lord:

 THAT Staff be directed to investigate the feasibility of amending Zoning Bylaw #5000 to permit single family dwellings with secondary suites, to not require the property owner to reside in either the primary unit or secondary suite;

AND FURTHER, that staff’s report be referred to the Affordable Housing Advisory Committee for their review and recommendation to Council.

CARRIED, with Councillor Spiers opposed.

Landlords Success in 2014

We hope changes are made to increase investment and allow more professional landlords to own more rental properties in Vernon in the new year.

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Kelowna Landlords& Okanagan Landlords: Tenant Credit Checks

· Tenant Credit Checks

 Kelowna landlords tenant credit checks

Welcome to our second post for Kelowna landlords.

Our site also wants to reach out to landlords in Vernon and landlord in our area.

We have heard from hundreds of landlords looking for news, tips and advice in the Okanagan area.

We Live In a Great Area With Huge Opportunities

With the natural beauty and economic development of our area more and more people from across Canada and around the world our choosing cities such as Kelowna and Vernon as their homes.

This means more tenants and is a great opportunity for landlords here.

Of course places like Surrey are also growing and Surrey landlords are happy. 

It’s just creating a bigger pie for all landlords and real estate investors.

More people wanting to come here and ‘set up shop’ and call our area a home is good news for landlords.

Lots of good tenants are coming.

Some Tenants Coming Aren’t So Good

It’s important for Okanagan landlords in Kelowna, Vernon and every else in the area realize that while most tenants are you rent to will be terrific there are some bad apples out there as well.

Lots of Example of Bad Tenants

It’s important for landlords to protect ourselves.

The British Columbia landlord and tenant system isn’t perfect

It’s far from perfect!

And all those bad tenant stories we hear from Ontario landlords are coming here.

A clever and savvy bad tenant can easily live months free under our current system.

And do thousands of dollars of damages.

Warning, Warning, Warning

Recently a Victoria landlord rented out to tenants based on her sympathy.

You see, the family advertised on Craigslist and said they were a young and nice family who were vicitms of a ‘bad landlord.’

They needed a place to move in to, and fast.

The landlady met them and was impressed!

The provided her with a ‘work reference’. She called and the person on the phone said they would be amazing tenants.

She rented to them.

1, After they moved in their rent cheque bounced.

2. The employment reference cut their telephone lines.

3. Four months of free rent later, the landlord finally evicted them.

4. The landlord was out over $20,000!

How Can You Protect Yourself and Find Good Tenants?

Landlords need to ‘screen’ tenants carefully.

Credit Checks

It’s absolutely essential landlords do a credit check before renting to anyone!

A credit check will give you important details on your potential tenant.

Low Cost/High Quality Tenant Credit Checks are Now Available for British Columbia Landlords

Every landlord wants to find the ideal tenant — the person who always pays rent on time, never disturbs others, doesn’t complain or cause conflicts and keeps the premises in better condition than when he or she moved in.

Join the BC Landlords Association and EMPOWER YOUR RENTAL BUSINESS and find great tenants!

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Kelowna Landlords

· Kelowna landlords

Kelowna landlords

Advice, Tips and Networking for Kelowna Landlords

We issue a warm welcome to all Kelowna landlords and landlords and property investors in the area.

There are lots of great opportunities for landlords (and people thinking of becoming landlords) in Kelowna and the surrounding area.

There are also lots of challenges

These challenges seem to be growing each year. 

Whether it’s tenants not paying rent, or harassing their landlord or even causing thousands of dollars in damages to the rental property.

And to top it all off British Columbia landlords can only legally raise the rent 2.2% in 2014.

Landlords Have Questions

With all the opportunities and growing challenges we hear landlords asking a lot of questions on how to succeed (and in some cases survive).

Here are some of the questions we hear about and will discuss:

1. Is Kelowna a city I should invest in? Why or why not?

2. How can I find a nice income property that cash-flows in Kewlowna?

3. Are there rental property investment opportunities in the area?

   For example, such as Vernon and Penticton?

   What about bigger places like Kamloops?

4. How can I advertise my property to find good renters?

5. What ways can I make my rental property stand out from all the others on the market?

6. How can I find a good contractor?

7. What is the best way to meet up and network with other landlords?

8. I have a bad tenant. What should I do?

9. Do I have to rent to tenants with pets?

10. My tenant moved out and left a mess and owes me rent. How can I recover my losses?

In the coming months we will touch on all these subjects, and many more.

Welcome to all Kelowna landlords and we look forward to networking, news and helping each other succeed!

Remember to make sure you check out the free British Columbia landlord forum to begin networking and share tips and advice.

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