Landlord Contract Program
Queen’s runs a voluntary program for landlords who have had their units inspected by an independent third party for compliance with the City of Kingston’s property standards by-law. This By-law describes standards for such items as pest prevention, structural soundness, windows and doors, kitchens, walls, ceilings, floors, egress, steps, handrails, heating systems, bathrooms, ventilation, and yards. For example section 5.3 dictates that using a cellar as a habitable room (e.g. bedroom) is illegal. The Tri-Colour Flag logo on the Accommodation Listing Service indicates that the unit is part of the Program and as such has been inspected within the last 12 months and appears to meet the City’s minimum property standards as of a specific date.
Units that are under the Landlord Contract Program are extended an exemption under the Residential Tenancies Act. The exemption permits a Tenancy Termination Agreement to be signed at the time that the lease is signed. In other words, if you are a tenant of a unit in the Landlord Contract Program, you will be agreeing to terminate your tenancy at the conclusion of the lease. Most landlords have a period of time in which they allow tenants to apply to be considered for a new lease on the same unit. Landlords with units in the program are required to provide a copy of the Landlord Program Contract to the tenants when signing the lease.
The process for getting/keeping a unit on the program now begins with the completion of the Landlord Contract Program Application Form which the landlord provides to their chosen OAPSO Certified Property Standards Officer (CSPO) at the time of inspection. Once the unit passes, the CSPO completes the bottom portion of the application form and the landlord returns the document to our office to initiate preparation of the Agreement. A non-refundable processing fee of $20/application is due at the time the application is submitted (must apply each year).
Other features of the Landlord Contract Program include:
- Inspection holidays for consecutive years of membership, e.g. after five (5) consecutive years (no lapses) in good standing in the program (on a per unit basis), inspection is only required every other year;
- Priority placement on Queen’s Listing Service as well as units identified by special tri-colour flag logo;
- Preferred pricing for rental listings ($5/30 day ad vs. $35/30 day ad);
- Rent amount of unit to be included in contract and tracked year to year;
- Addressing timing issues by allowing units to be inspected up to two (2) months in advance of contract renewal date. New contracts must be fully executed (signed by landlord and Queen’s) prior to the expiration date of the existing contract;
- Letter sent by Community Housing directly to tenants of units in program at the beginning of each school year providing info on the program, stated rent amount, etc.;
- Requirement for new clauses in leases beginning in May 2011
- indicating that the tenant(s) received a copy of the Landlord Contract from the landlord at the time of/prior to signing the lease (this is for the protection of both the tenant(s) and the landlord. We suggest having this as an initialed clause similar to receipt of keys), and;
- regarding “renting from the door in”
- Program units will be listed on the Community Housing website by address (no landlord identification/information provided);
- Requirement to provide the City of Kingston Noise By-Law Information Sheet to tenants
- Information received from Campus security involving units in program to be shared with landlord/property manager of the unit;
- Letter sent by Community Housing directly to tenants when unit ceases to be in the program;
- Correspondence from University (via email) to program participants with information relevant to rental housing (e.g. enrolment changes, etc).
If you have questions about the program, including whether or not your unit is in it, please email or call our office.
- The Residential Tenancies Actwas enacted on January 31, 2007
- A number of changes took place with this new piece of legislation
- Section 37; relating to the use of termination agreements
- Educational institutions were successful in their bid to receive an exemption where private landlords were not
- Universities have been given the ability to pass along the privilege of using the termination agreement under certain circumstances to private landlords
- Landlords must meet certain criteria before the University can pass along the privilege of using the termination agreement
- The unit(s) to be rented must be inspected to meet minimum property standards by a certified property inspector
- The landlord must enter into a contract with the University for each unit inspected and agree to adhere to certain conditions, including only raising rent by the guideline amount (per R.T.A.) even if tenants change.
- After entering into a contract with the University, landlords will have the ability to
- use a termination agreement for those units which contracts were entered into with the University that met minimum standards and other criteria listed on the contract
- receiving priority placement on the Queen’s Listing Service when advertising those units in the program (a preferred listing rate of $5/ad/30 days vs $35/ad/30 days is also provided)
- provide rental accommodation for periods suitable for students needs
- If the landlord breaches the agreement with the University it could impact the ability to use the services of Community Housing
- For further details please contact Community Housing, at 613-533-2501 or by email.
- Information on legal terminations of tenancies