Quebec Rental Board
Navigating through the maze of the Quebec Rental Board (Regie du Logement) can be difficult and at times frustrating. We strive to answer some basic questions and demystify some common misunderstandings.
1. In Quebec it take months to evict a tenant
Not necessarily. The law allows one to open a file at the Rental Board and start eviction proceedings against a tenant when rent is 3 weeks late. Despite the myth that it takes months to get a hearing at the Regie, nonpayment of rent files have priority, taking on average 4 weeks to be called for the hearing.
Never delay regarding tenants that are consistently late rent payers. With landlord delay and hesitance, it can indeed take months to evict.
2. Quebec is very tenant-friendly
This is arguably a true statement; however there are numerous situations where the burden of proof is on the tenant. For instance if one abandons their lease because they claim repairs were not made on time or that the dwelling was inhabitable, they must prove that they made reasonable efforts and gave the landlord the opportunity to rectify the situation.
3. A tenant can move with 3 months notice.
If the 3 months notice is prior to the end of their lease, it is correct that this would be sufficient notice. However, in Quebec a tenant is bound to their lease for the life of the term. If a lease ends June 30, this does not imply a tenant can give 3 month notice in January and leave the dwelling at the end of March. They are financially and legally responsible for the life of their lease.
4. I’m selling my dwelling, I can ask the tenant to leave so I can sell easily
This is a major misunderstanding. For instances of real estate sales, only buyers of a property can make a request for repossession. And this request must come with minimum 6 month notice. Quebec has strict rights for tenants regarding the right to maintain occupancy.
5. A landlord must just live with a tenant that pays late every month
If the lease specifies the payment of rent is due on the first of the month, then one can take action to force the tenant to pay on the first of the month. One must show that the late payments are causing prejudice and hardship to the landlord. By opening a file at the Regie and your complaint being accepted will mean the tenant must pay on the first of the month. If they do not, you can return to the Rental Board and ask for eviction this time around. Hence it’s very important to keep receipts of late payments and photocopy late rent checks.
If the public has any questions about specific personal scenarios, do not hesitate to contact us.