Alberta Landlords Association

Posts Tagged ‘Rental property’

Calgary Landlords – Higher Rents, Lower Vacancies, New Demand From Buyers

Friday, February 8th, 2013

February 7th, 2013

Bull + A Rising Stock Chart

According to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) things are looking good for Calgary landlords. The rental market in the city is tightening up. Rents are increasing and vacancies are declining.

This is great news for landlords who have faced lots of challenges recently with so many bad tenants out there.

Richard Cho is with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. He is a senior market analyst and has been researching the Alberta rental market.
According to Cho, the decline in the vacancy rate and raising rents is going to create a dramatic trend. Renters have strong incentive to become home-owners.
Vacancy rates in Calgary and her suburbs dropped to only 1.3% in October, 2012. This is a significant decline compared to the 1.9% vacancy rate in 2012.
Rents have also gone up in Calgary.
Cho said not only will this lead some current tenants to buy. It will also lead them to seek out rental properties in “secondary markets” such as condominium buildings that investors decide to rent out. The demand for high quality condos as rentals is also occurring in markets such as Toronto.

Cho also predicts there will be more construction of rental property accommodation in 2013. This is a great opportunity for investors to purchase new, attractive, high quality properties.

The Calgary market is growing fast and a great opportunity for landlords and investors. Edmonton and other Alberta cities are also seeing amazing growth and improving conditions.

Vacancies are low and rents are rising. Alberta also has the most fair rules for landlords and tenants in Canada.

With new rental stock being built investors should seriously consider getting into our growing market.

To discuss this and other landlord and tenant issues, go to the largest landlord and tenant forum in Canada and network with thousands of other like-minded landlords and investors! Go to the Alberta Landlords Forum.

Edmonton Tenants and Landlords Under Attack From Online Scammers

Sunday, January 13th, 2013

January 12th, 2013

ala craigslist

Another Day, Another Rental Scam – This Time Targeting Edmonton Tenants and Landlords

According to a report from CBC News, both the Canadian Anti Fraud Center and the Edmonton Police force are warning tenants to be cautious of a new Craigslist rental scam.

The scam has now reached other sites where Edmonton landlords advertise for tenants. It’s another example of why both tenants and landlords must be careful and inexperienced landlords should seek professional assistance if they don’t feel confident in running their rental business by themselves.

Similar to the recent scam that targeted Canmore landlords and tenants, crooks put up super attractive advertisements for rental properties. The crooks target interested tenants who are looking to rent a house, apartment or condo.

When an interested potential renter contacts the fake landlord they are told the actual rental property owner has left the city because of a work transfer. The interested renter can pay the rent using Western Union they will get a set of keys to the property sent to them.

While the rental properties are real, the crooks are not the actual owners.

In fact, they have no connection with the real owners at all. The crooks simply pretend to be the owners and use pictures and information about the property they find online.

According to the Edmonton Police Service’s Detective Bill Allen, complaints about this scam are coming in weekly.

One victim of this scam is Captain Rebecca Evans.

Evans is a veteran who served for us in Afghanistan.

She was looking for a great condo on Craigslist and thought she found it. The online ad described the condo as not only new but filled with great appliances and other amenities. Not only that, but it was also only a short drive from where she is stationed in Edmonton.

Captain Evans contacted the ‘landlord’ about her interest in the rental. She received a reply from ‘landlord Leo Jeffrey.’
‘Landlord Leo Jeffrey’ replied as any experienced landlord would reply. He said he wanted a good tenant and asked for more information. He made it clear he was looking for someone who would treat the condo like their own, with care.

This sounded good to a responsible renter like Evans. She sent personal information to ensure the ‘landlord’ knew she was the type of tenant he wanted.

Evans later received an email that she had been ‘accepted’ to rent the place. She was told she needed to wire $800 to him as the damage deposit. Once sent, she would receive the keys.

The reason the money had to wired was, Leo explained, because he had to go work in his U.S. office and he had only recently made the decision to rent out his Edmonton property.

Captain Evans thought the story sounded reasonable and wanted the excellent apartment. She wired the $800 for the damage deposit and then, after receiving a tracking number for the keys being sent, wired another 1k for the first month rent. Eventually, she sent $2,800 to rent the condo.

It was all a scam.

Not only was the website she saw fake, but the shipping company was also a fraud!

According to Evans, the fake landlord was talented at his criminal endeavor. He also sounded very legitimate and authentic.

In reality, it was a scam and he was simply a crook.

Daniel Williams of the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre says these types of crooks are well practiced in conducting their scams and they might even be a one part of organized international crime.“

And they are targeting Edmonton as well as other large rental markets.

Edmonton Tenants Be Careful To Make Sure You Are Renting From the Real Rental Property Owner! Edmonton Landlords Check Online Rental Ad Sites to Make Sure No One Is Trying To Rent Out Your Property!

 

To Discuss This With Other Alberta landlords and Canadian Landlords In Other Provinces Go To The Alberta Landlords Forum.

Alberta Landlords – Are You Going to Raise the Rent in 2013?

Tuesday, January 1st, 2013

January 1st, 2013

 Happy New year from AUPE

How Much Are you Going to Raise the Rent in 2013?

Aren’t There Controls on How Much You Can Raise The Rent, Like In British Columbia and Ontario?

No. There are no rent controls in Alberta. This allows Alberta landlords the ability to maintain stable and profitable rental properties. This is especially important if you get bad tenants.

That’s Amazing! So I Can Raise the Rent Whenever I Want To?

No, there are rules you need to follow.

Rent can only be increased if there has not been a rent increase within the previous 365 days or since the start of the tenancy, whichever is later.

Are Their Other Rules?

Before the rent can be increased the landlord must give proper written notice. For mobile home sites, 180 days notice must be given by the landlord to raise the rent.

1. weekly tenancy – 12 weeks
2. monthly tenancy – 3 months
3. periodic tenancy – 90 days

What If the Tenants Disagree?

If the tenant does not want to pay the increased amount of rent, or if the tenant cannot afford to pay the increased rent, then the tenant can:

#1     Try negotiating with the landlord to see if less rent can be paid

or

#2      End the tenancy (the tenant must give the proper amount of notice to end the tenancy).

If the tenant remains living on the property then the tenant must pay the increased rent when it is due. If the tenant does not pay, then the landlord can terminate the tenancy for non-payment of rent.

That Seems Very Fair. How Do Things Work In Other Provinces?

Other Canadian provinces have what is called “Rent Control.” This means the government mandates who much you can raise the rent each year.

The Government Tells Private Landlords What They Can Charge?

Yes. Here are the 2013 rent increase guidelines for other provinces.

In British Columbia, landlords can raise the rent by 3.8% in 2013.

In Ontario, landlords can only raise the rent by 2.5% in 2013 because rental rates are capped at that amount no matter how much landlord costs have gone up.

In Manitoba where they have an NDP government you can only raise the rent by 1% in 2013.

Alberta Landlords Are You Going To Raise the Rent in 2013? Unlike Other Provinces, We Don’t Have the Government Interfering With Our Ability to Make a Profit or At Least Cover Our Rising Costs.

Alberta Landlords – Find Great Tenants With Credit Checks From Equifax

Saturday, October 27th, 2012

October 26th, 2012

For Only $10 Per Credit Check, Alberta Landlords Can Feel Secure In Finding Great Tenants!

What’s the key to success as a landlord in Alberta?  Finding great tenants!

How Can I Find Great Tenants?

The key is to pre-screen potential renters.  This way you not only can find great tenants, you can avoid the Pro’s.

The “Pro’s”?

Yes. You can avoid predatory tenants who will not pay rent, will damage your property, and won’t follow the law.

Do These Types of Tenants Really Exist?

Yes. Take a look at what happened to this Edmonton landlord when her tenants turned her rental property into a huge dump and then vanished.

 Horrible. And What Happens If you Rent to a Pro Tenant?

Once a pro tenant gets the key and possession of your property, they have a lot of legal rights and it can be a real long haul to get them out.  Take a look at what Calgary landlords who are fed up with the system have to say.

These types of pro tenants can happen anywhere, no matter where you are.

I Want to Avoid Pro Tenants!

With proper tenant screening you can do this.

How Do Credit Reports Help Landlords?

A credit report can help a landlord find out a lot of information about a potential tenant.

For example

– IS THIS POTENTIAL TENANT REALLY WHO THEY SAY THEY ARE?

– DOES THIS POTENTIAL TENANT HAVE A HISTORY OF BEING FINANCIALLY RESPONSIBLE?

– CAN THIS POTENTIAL TENANT AFFORD TO RENT MY PROPERTY?

– HAS THIS POTENTIAL TENANT RIPPED ANYONE OFF?

-DO THEY HAVE ANY COLLECTION AGENCIES OR JUDGMENTS AGAINST THEM?

-HAVE THEY BEEN INVOLVED IN ANY FRAUDULENT ACTIVITY?

A credit check can answer these questions and more and take the mystery out of tenant screening.

Each report can help you answer these questions and give you the information you need to make an informed decision.

How Can I Do a Credit Check?

The Alberta Landlords Association (ALA) is proud to be a partner with one of the world’s premier financial companies, Equifax!  Make sure you conduct proper screening so you can find great tenants avoid needing help to deal with the pros.

Alberta Landlords Association members can have Equifax be your partner for tenant screening.  Members can get Equifax credit checks for only $10 per check from your home or office computer!

.

Landlords Protect Yourself From Pro Tenants and Find Great Tenants. Join the ALA and Have Equifax Become Your Partner for Success in Doing Premium Tenant Screening With Credit Checks for only $10 per Check!

Online Rental Scam Resurfaces in Grande Prairie, Alberta

Thursday, October 18th, 2012

October 18th, 2012

 .

A Rental Scam Has Resurfaced in Grande Prairie

According to Grande Prairie real estate agents, the low vacancy rate for rental properties has led to a new scam.

What’s the Scam?

It involves scammers pretending to be landlords and ripping off renters.

How Does the Scam Work?

Grande Prairie real estate agent John Rudyk explains it this way.  Scammers will search online for houses that are for sale and vacant.  Then they set up fake adverts on places such as Kijiji and Craigslist saying “the place is for rent.”

A similar fraud occurred in Lethbridge in August

Landlords and student tenants also experienced this type of scam in Ontario over the summer.

What a Nasty Trick!

Yes.  Rudyk goes on to say the scam is attractive to renters because the rental price is lower than all the other ‘real’ houses up for rent.

How Can Tenants Protect Themselves from the Scammers?

Rudyk wants tenants to know real landlords will always meet you in person, or have their representative meet you.

Sadly, this not only hurts tenants, it also hurts the reputation of all the great landlords out there.

.

Landlords and Tenants in Grande Prairie and all over Alberta be aware of yet another scam out to bilk you out of thousands of dollars!

Landlords – Fire Prevention Week! Time to Make Your Secondary Suites Legal

Thursday, October 11th, 2012

October 10th, 2012

.

The City of Lethbridge Will Help Landlords Create Legal Apartments!

What’s Going On During Fire Prevention Week in Lethbridge, Alberta?

Lethbridge Fire Prevention officers are encouraging residents to take advantage of the city’s “secondary suite program.”

What Does the Program Offer Landlords?

The program reimburses residents 50% of the cost of legalizing suites, up to $2,500.

What a Great Idea!

Yes.  It’s a great way to encourage landlords to create safer, high quality rental housing.  Very different than in Ontario, where they like to fine landlords and punish them for creating affordable rental housing.

How Can Landlords Make Their Secondary Suites Safer?

The Alberta Landlords Association promotes fire safety.

Mark Hoveling is a Fire Prevention officer.  He says it can be simple to legalize a suite.  It might be as simple as making a window larger.  or installing a sprinkler system in the rental unit’s furnace room.

What a Great Program by the City of Lethbridge Government and Fire Services Team!

Yes, and this secondary suite program comes at the same time as the Fire Prevention holiday.  This year’s theme happens to be: you need to have ‘2 ways out!’

Lethbridge, Alberta landlords take advantage of a great opportunity to create legal secondary suites with the government’s help.

Alberta Landlords – Tenant Screening, Credit Checks, with Equifax

Thursday, October 4th, 2012

October 5th, 2012

 

TORONTO, ONTARIO–(Marketwire -09/30/11)- Equifax (NYSE: EFXNews) announced today the launch of their new online tenant screening service, Tenant Selector. Tenant Selector gives registered property management professionals the ability to screen potential renters quickly and easily and will be featured at this year’s PM Expo taking place at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre from November 30 to December 2.

Tenant Selector draws on Equifax’s market leading source of consumer credit information to instantly provide users with 24/7 access to a real-time recommendation on prospective tenants. No longer is it necessary to pull and review an applicant’s credit report to protect oneself against the potential threat of income loss or identity theft.

Here’s how it works: Tenant Selector is easy, fast and secure. Users simply enter the applicant’s name and other personal information into the system and Tenant Selector will do the work. Within seconds, Tenant Selector delivers an ‘accept’ or ‘decline’ recommendation based on factual information, not ‘gut feel’. Tenant Selector is a web enabled, browser based proprietary tool developed in-house by technology and solution experts at Equifax, a recognized worldwide leader in data protection and security.

Equifax invites you to visit their website (www.equifax.ca/growmybusiness) or PM Expo exhibit (Booth #2020) for a Tenant Selector demonstration and more information about how we can help professional property managers make the right tenant decisions.

About Equifax, www.equifax.com

Equifax empowers businesses and consumers with information they can trust. A global leader in information solutions, we leverage one of the largest sources of consumer and commercial data, along with advanced analytics and proprietary technology, to create customized insights that enrich both the performance of businesses and the lives of consumers.

Businesses – large and small – rely on us for consumer and business credit intelligence, portfolio management, fraud detection, decisioning technology, marketing tools, and much more. We empower individual consumers to manage their personal credit information, protect their identity, and maximize their financial well-being.

Headquartered in Atlanta, Equifax Inc. operates in the U.S. and 15 other countries throughout North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia. Equifax’s common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol EFX.

Calgary Housing Program Offers Cheap Housing In Return for Helping Landlords

Monday, September 17th, 2012
September 16th, 2012

Landlords and Tenants and a Win-Win Situation!

What is the Housing Program About?

A Calgary program focusing on home shares is taking a new approach to low vacancy rates and higher rent prices to help both Calgary landlords and Calgary tenants.

Sounds Good!

The program is attempting to connect Seniors with university students to fill rooms that are still vacant in return for these students offering the Seniors support.

What Type of Support?

Here’s how it works.  The Calgary program helps students in Calgary find inexpensive housing in exchange for helping the homeowner, usually a Senior, do daily house work.

Can You Provide Me with Real Life Examples of the Program?

Recently widowed, landlord Vivian Toews sometimes requires a bit of help doing gardening and household cleaning.

Meanwhile, University of Calgary student Rebecca Enter was looking for an inexpensive place to rent while she studies.

What Happened?

The Calgary Home Share program saw they could be a perfect match!

The program brought them together.

What Does the Landlord Say?

The landlord Vivian Toews praises the heavy jobs her tenant does for her.  Toews also praise Rebecca’s great attitude … even when Toews admits she gets a bit bossy.

And the Tenant?

Tenant Enter says her chores are like what she is used to doing at home, like cutting the lawn.  She always appreciates the fact she is helping out a senior.

This is just another example of how small business landlords are really an important part of our economy.  Of course, the media rarely reacts when a small business landlord helps renters out.

What Is the Lease Agreement?

Toews and Enter signed a lease which states there will be no partying and no guests staying overnight.

It’s an agreement which includes no overnight guests and no partying.

The tenants’ rent is only $300 monthly.

Is This Program Expanding?

Yes.  The program is a success and is now including adult tenants. It’s yet another example of how Calgary landlords are helping tenants.

How Many Senior Landlords Are Now Involved?

There are now over seventy senior landlords who have been matched with tenants.

There are also over fifty seniors on the waiting list for renters!

What Type of Tenant Screening is Done?

Background checks are done on all applicants.

For more information on the program, visit the Calgary Seniors’ Resource Society website.  It’s a terrific resource for Calgary Landlords to meet helpful and qualified tenants.

It’s also great to see the government looking after the needs of both Calgary landlords and Calgary tenants instead of what is happening in Ontario where Ontario landlords are being punished when they try to create affordable housing.

Alberta: a great place to invest and live in!

August 29 Welcome back

Wednesday, August 29th, 2012

August 19, 2012

Fire-ravaged apartments rebuilt, accepting tenants

By Jordan Thompson

Posted 4 days ago

On April 17, 2007, a massive fire tore through the Edgewater Court apartment complex, gutting the building and leaving many of its 300 residents homeless.

Over five years later, Edgewater Court has been successfully rebuilt, and began accepting tenants again on Wednesday.

“As with any fire, the major damage was water damage,” said president of Wood Buffalo Housing and Development Corporation Byran Lutes. “The first floor and roof of the east portion of the building was physically damaged to the point it didn’t exist.

“The building needed to be gutted and rebuilt as if it had never been there. Wiring, plumbing, drywall, carpet, ceilings; the whole thing. It all had to be done in incremental steps, and then we also had to make sure it was all up to the new codes and make it proper and fit. Now we have it in that position, and are able to move people back in to a virtually brand new building.”

The first 20 families are being moved into the building, which has 94 units, this week.

“There are still unallocated units as well,” Lutes said. “People can go to our office in the Haxton Building and make an application there for all of our programs, which would include these units.”

 

http://www.fortmcmurraytoday.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=3598311#.UBvidxz41Vs.twitter

Landlord Finds Tenants Turned Her Rental Property into A Huge Dump, then Vanish!

Sunday, July 15th, 2012

July 15th, 2012

 

A Warning For Other Alberta Landlords!

What Happened?

Tenants renting from a landlord in the Gibbons area transformed her nice rental property into a huge dump!

Did they Catch the Tenants?

No. The two tenants have vanished.  And she now realizes the legal system cannot help her.

This is why the landlord is issuing a warning to other Alberta landlords.

What is her Warning?

She doesn’t want anyone else to make the same mistakes she made and face the horrible mess she now faces.

Who is Sending Out the Warning?

The Landlords name is Pat Nielsen.

What Happened?

Nielsen says she rented her home to a couple of tenants for two years.

During the first summer, Nielsen took notice the two tenants were not properly taking care of the property.

For Example?

She saw the tenants never mowed the law or cleared all the weeds growing in the yard.  She would always have to ask them to keep up the property and it would take them a long time to get around to actually doing it.

What Did She Do?

Nielsen saw history repeating itself this Spring.  Weeds were overgrowing the property and the lawn wasn’t being cut.

And?

She decided “enough was enough” with these two tenants.  She issued them an eviction notice.  She made it clear she wanted both of them gone from her property within a month.

Did the Tenants Leave After a Month?

The tenants pleaded with her for more time.  Eventually Nielsen gave in and decided to give them up to 90 days to move out.  This meant they would have to vacate by the end of July.

What Happened Next?

Earlier this week, she posted a 24 hour inspection notice after their cheques bounced.  This wasn’t the first time their cheques bounced.

Nielson says she went to the property and the tenants were gone.  They had left a mess that was out of this world.


The mess included old equipment, rotten boxes and trash outside.

Inside was even worse.

There were cat feces, empty food containers, dirt in the carpets, clothing and damages to the property.

Horrible!  What did the Landlord Do Next?

The landlord contacted the police.  The officers showed their sympathy but  told her they couldn’t do anything because she failed to complete a “Move-In Report.”  This is an inspection that is required to be done under the Alberta Residential Tenancies Act.

A Moving In and Moving Out Inspection Report?

Service Alberta’s Mike Berezowsky states that according to the Alberta Residential Tenancies Act, landlords and tenants much both complete a Move In and Move Out inspection report.

According to Berzowsky:

“If there isn’t an inspection report done when a tenant moves it, if there’s a dispute later on it makes it more difficult if there are some problems.”   He continues,  “Say, for example, the landlord wants to seek some compensation to damages to the property, well, there’s no evidence of what kind of state the property was in when the tenant moved in.”

What is Nielsen’s Warning to Other Landlords?

Nielsen confesses not getting that inspecting report done was a huge mistake.  She hopes other landlords will learn from it.

She wants all landlords to hear her message: “Please don’t make the mistake I made because this is what can happen: that you can find a tenant that can just wreck your whole place.”

It Looks Like There Should be More to Her Warning

Even if she had done the “Move In Inspection” it may not have helped her. 

As the latest Tenant from Hell in Ontario has shown, bad tenants are tricky.

In order to collect money from Tenants from Hell you must be able to find them and take them to court.

Even if you win, you may not collect a cent.  Tenants with bad credit ratings or without stable employment are nearly impossible to collect from.

So How Can a Landlord Truly Protect Themselves?

One way is by doing a credit check on a prospective tenant before handing over the key.

Landlord Communities

National Landlord Help