I wanted to talk to you about how one simple step can help you avoid a human rights violation in the province of Ontario if you are a landlord. (You can also watch the video here.) As a real estate agent we do manage our own properties as well as help rent out properties for our clients. We do a lot of due diligence and screening when it comes to finding potential tenant for our vacant units. There’s a lot of information we ask for upfront. We will be asking for the rental application that lists off everybody who’s going to be there, credit check, employment check, pay stubs, references, and criminal checks. You’re asking for all of this stuff upfront and you’re going to make a decision based on this.
What you cannot do is say you want to make your decision based on meeting them after the application. You can’t say that the application, credit and income look good, but you’d like to meet with them first before you say okay. This means you’d be making a decision based on their physical appearance, their ethnicity, their religion, things that absolutely do not matter when it comes to a rental application. You would be getting yourself into a lot of trouble if you met with a potential tenant and then said no to them for whatever the reason is. They could come back and say that their application was good enough for you to meet with them, but what caused you to say no to me now? Since you’re asking for all of the information upfront, this should be plenty for you to make a decision on, especially if you’re doing reference checks.
This is a very avoidable situation. I understand that it can be a little bit nerve-wracking when you’re a brand-new landlord. You want to be very cautious with who you want coming into your property. You have every right to decide what kind of tenant you want based on their credit or income levels, that’s totally within your rights. You cannot make it contingent on meeting with them face-to-face though and then saying yes.
We always let the landlord and tenants meet once the lease is all tied up because they will want to build a rapport with each other. They landlord may also want to show the house to them and point out some things around the property. We also try to accommodate this, but not until the deal is wrapped up.
I hope this helped and if you ever have any more questions please leave them below.
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