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'There is an epidemic': Metro Vancouver family challenges no-fault eviction


A Metro Vancouver family is disputing a no-fault eviction notice they received from their landlord.

Jennifer and Kristopher Miller received the eviction notice two weeks before Christmas.

The document, viewed by CTV News, stated the reason for the eviction is due to their landlord’s family member occupying the unit – a claim the couple are questioning.

“We think it’s suspicious that his son is moving in,” Kristopher said. “All communication in regards to this house has all been in regards to a rental increase, not that his son has been displaced.”

In 2021, Kristopher said, the family of five signed a two-year rental increase form that fixed the rent from Jan. 1, 2022, to Dec. 31, 2023.

The form, viewed by CTV News, shows the monthly rent payments at $1,725.

Prior to the contract finishing, Kristopher said, their landlord contacted them about increasing the rent.

“He approached us saying that he wanted to raise the rent substantially by basically doubling our rent,” he said.

CTV News repeatedly contacted the landlord for comment, but no response was received before deadline.

'Process needs to be fairer'

Robert Patterson, a lawyer with the Tenant Resource and Advisory Centre, a tenant advocacy group, told CTV News that since the province tightened rules around renovictions, the organization has become inundated with calls about no-fault evictions.

“What it’s caused is a pivot,” Patterson said. “There is an epidemic of this specific kind of eviction right now in the province.”

Patterson said he’d like to see the province toughen regulations on no-fault evictions, such as legislation similar to that used for renovictions.

“The process needs to be fairer, it needs to be more transparent,” he said. "It needs to give tenants a chance to protect and defend their housing in the middle of a housing and eviction crisis.”

In a statement to CTV News, Housing Minister Ravi Kahlon said his ministry has taken a number of steps to address this issue, such as requiring landlords to prove they’re using a property for the stated purpose for at least six months.

“Ministry staff are exploring other options on how to cut down on bad faith evictions due to landlord use,” Kahlon said.

'We don't know what to do'

The Millers are now awaiting a hearing in February with the Residential Tenancy Branch to dispute the no-fault eviction.

While they wait, they are trying to determine whether they should look for a new place, put their belongings in storage, or hope the arbitrator will rule in their favour.

“We feel like we’re kind of living in limbo and we’ve been living in limbo since the middle of December,” Jennifer said.

“We don’t know what to do,” Kristopher added. Top Stories

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