Tenant awarded $22,000 after being evicted by BC landlord who didn’t move in
A B.C. woman who was unfairly evicted after a new landlord bought the property she had rented for years has been awarded 12 months’ rent for her troubles.
The former tenant appealed her eviction through the Residential Tenancy Branch and walked away with $22,140 in compensation, according to a recent decision posted online.
None of the parties are named in the document.
The Residential Tenancies Branch learned that the tenant began renting the home in December 2017 and lived there until he received a “two-month notice of termination for landlord’s use of the property.” ” three years later.
She agreed to move out by February 28, 2021 to make way for the new landlord – only for the landlord to start renting to another tenant a month later.
The owner testified that she bought the property after separating from her husband and originally intended to live there with their child, even going so far as to start moving her belongings into the house a few days after the departure of the former tenant.
But on March 6, she had “decided not to occupy the rental unit and stayed in her husband’s house to try to reconcile the relationship”, according to the decision of the Residential Tenancies Branch.
The landlady argued she faced a mitigating circumstance after realizing the move would require her child to leave the family home and change schools.
“The buyer said that in the end, she did what was best for the sake of her family and had no choice but to re-rent the unit,” the document reads. .
Landlords are allowed to evict tenants so they – or a family member – can move into their property, but they are generally expected to stay there for at least six months.
And the mitigating circumstances that would exempt them from having to compensate their former tenant in the event of a breach are limited; the Residential Tenancy Branch gave an example in which a relative dies shortly after moving in.
According to the decision, an owner who changes his mind does not meet this bar.
“The buyer, through reasonable planning, could have anticipated the potential impacts of the move before purchasing the unit,” it reads.
The former tenant also received an additional $100 to cover the cost of filing the litigation.