November 1st, 2012
New Pilot Program Targets Calgary Landlords With Secondary Suites
Landlords who have secondary suites in their homes are being target by the city of Calgary’s new safety program.
What’s the Aim of the Program?
According to the city, this is a new program aimed at safety. More information is available at the Calgary Herald.
The new program will bring secondary suites up to the city building code.
Has the Program Started?
Yes. Calgary is sending letters to fifty homes with secondary suites throughout the city.
What Do the Letter Say?
The letters inform these fifty landlord they have been singled out. Their homes will be inspected.
The landlords will need to prove they have things such as land-use designation, needed permits, and if their secondary suite meet provincial building and fire codes.
According to building official chief Kevin Griffiths, the program will bring ‘awareness’ of safety issues. Any properties which don’t meet official code with face immediate consequences.
They will not inspect or help landlord out who are renting to Tenants from Hell.
What Are The Consequences?
The city of Calgary says it will help home-owner fix up their secondary suites to meet the provincial code.
What Are Some of the Other Things Government Inspectors Will Look For?
Safety and zoning inspectors will be checking for working smoke detectors, clear exits, window size and other safety requirements.
How Long Does This Program Run For?
The program runs until April 2013. A report will go before council by June with the findings and recommendations.
What Prompted This?
Griffiths says he wants to to provide education to home-owners with secondary suites. A huge fire in a basement apartment in 2009 that ended the lives of three tenants has brought this issue to the political table.
The landlords in this case was fined for not having proper smoke alarms and for having jail-like bars on the windows.
What’s the Goal of this Crack-Down?
One of the questions the pilot project aims to answer is whether owners are closing their suites because of the prohibitive costs of making them safe or the tricky path to legalization. It’s a great reason to make sure you rent to good tenants.
Calgary Landlords Get Ready for a New Program to Make Sure your Secondary Suites are Legal!