|Case Study #2:
re: Ontario Municipal Act: Landlord forced to pay Tenant's unpaid utilities on property
An Ontario landlord has paid over $7,500 in utilities since tenants moved in even
though the lease stated the tenants should pay. The landlord sought relief from the
Ontario Rental Housing Tribunal (ORHT) who decided it was not in there jurisdiction to
hear non- payment of utilities and the Small Claims Court decided it was not in their
jurisdiction since the defendants were still in possession and recommended that the ORHT
hear the matter. In the meantime the tenants remain without paying utilities for years.
The Onatrio Municipal Act puts the responsibility of unpaid utilities on the property
owner and attaches all unpaid accounts to the property tax bill. A lose lose situation for
the landlord and unless one has thousands to spend in higher courts to assert the lease
violation this hardship may indeed cause property loss. Eventually the residents slipped
into a cronic failing to pay the rent for various reasons. This allowed the owner to
finally end this case with a successful eviction proceeding. Watch for our TIPS broadcast
on how to structure the rent payment to avoid this situation altogether.
Can I report this to Rent Check? Yes, do report unpaid utilities to us but we caution
you to only do so if our consent language or equivalent is part of your housing
application and the resident has signed it. Consent is not required if you obtained a
Judgment against a prior tenant in Small Claims.
John Dobrowolski. President & CEO
Rent Check Credit Bureau
voice: 1-800-661-7312 / 416-365-7060 ext.222