Our biggest challenge has been a VERY challenging tenant. How do I summarize a long story?
In mid-September, she gave us notice via text saying she'll be leaving at the end of October, and:
- we should not expect October rent from her as her 'last month's rent' will apply
- not to contact her again, and when she is gone, she will text us to let us know
- not to have showings
Since she was in the middle of her 1-year lease, we explained how this broke a few different Landlord-Tenant Board rules. She didn't care.
She refused to let us in when we went for showings and eventually changed the locks on us.
After giving her written notice, time and the chance to give us the new keys, we went to the property and began drilling out her new locks. She called 911 to say we were breaking and entering. The police came and it was obvious that she was irrational and in the wrong. The police explained to her how she was wrong to change the locks, and stayed while we continued drilling out her locks, replaced them with new ones that we purchased, and gave her a set of keys to the new locks.
We weren't sure if she would actually move out when she said she would, so we prepared for that by filing appropriate documents with the LTB. She did move out when she said she would. Not before she left windows open, lights on, and two water taps running full blast.
How we handled it:
- MANY calls to the LTB to ensure we understood the rules and parameters, and we were acting properly.
- Few calls/emails to Kyle Hampson for legal advice
- issued her a number of LTB forms: N4, N11, N9, N5 (twice)
- gave her written notice and 24 hour notice, when we didn't have to, to enter the unit
- spoke to her (and wrote to her) rationally and professionally, even when she was irrational
- calmly explained LTB legislation to her when she clearly didn't understand our rights as owners/landlords
- always acted respectfully around her (knocked first, wore masks, kept our distance, spoke calmly)
- documented everything with dates and details