This is the final part in a four-part series on landlords’ maintenance obligations in Ontario. So far, we have covered the law governing maintenance obligations, the recourse options available to tenants such as filing an application with the Landlord and Tenant Board (the Board) and other resources available to tenants to assess their case, such as engaging municipal officials.
However, the most important piece of advice is reserved for this blog. The most effective way to ensure that you have a well-maintained apartment is to choose a good landlord to rent from. If you align yourself with a good housing provider in the first place, you do not have to worry about the law because you will not have to assert your rights forcefully. A conscientious landlord who is in the business for the right reasons will provide excellent service because it is the right thing to do, regardless of whether it is a legal requirement.
Landlords do a lot of due diligence before renting to someone, and we often wonder, why doesn’t it work the other way? Why don’t tenants ask more questions and check references before making such a big decision? At GK3 Group we encourage our prospective tenants to do their due diligence and ask us the hard questions. Choosing a place to live is one of the biggest decisions people ever make, and we fully support people taking the steps to protect themselves to ensure they will end up being happy in the long-run.
Here are a few steps you can take to make sure you rent from a landlord that will take their obligations seriously:
- ask questions about the landlord’s maintenance program
- ask for addresses of other properties owned by the landlord and drive by them
- ask for references and speak to some of the landlord’s other tenants
- visit all areas of the apartment complex including laundry rooms and common areas
- observe the outside of the building (quality of landscaping, curb appeal, etc.)
- check the landlord’s online profiles including customer reviews on platforms like google
At GK3 Group we have many five-star reviews on our google listing, and we are immensely proud of that. We also know that it gives prospective tenants a lot of confidence that they are signing up with a first-class landlord.
We never want a maintenance issue to escalate to the point of involving the authorities. We have built our reputation on strong tenant relationships and impeccable maintenance of our buildings. Unfortunately, not all tenants are lucky enough to have a landlord who takes their obligations seriously, so it is important for you to be educated on your rights. Afterall, a good landlord will not be scared of dealing with a well informed tenant!