Tenant advocacy group welcomes Surrey rental-standards bylaw

ACORN Canada, an advocacy group for lower-income families, is applauding a new City of Surrey bylaw intended to help protect the health and safety of renters.

Surrey council endorsed on May 28 a proposed standards-of-maintenance bylaw addressing the provision of basic amenities like water, heat, and light in rental properties.

The bylaw outlines the role of property owners, expectations around utilities and services, and penalties for any violations.

“We see this as progress for renters in Surrey,” Susan Collard, a Surrey spokesperson for ACORN Canada, said in a statement.

“Every week we hear of new cases of tenants lacking basic amenities in their apartments and the new bylaw will give them somewhere to go to get repairs,” Collard said.

The City of Surrey also plans to call on the B.C. government to provide funding to local governments for the work related to such standards-of-maintenance bylaws.

Surrey officials argue local governments are taking on responsibility for rental-property standards because of inadequate funding to the B.C. Residential Tenancy Branch.

“Unfortunately, we have renters who are living in unhealthy and unsafe housing conditions because landlords are not properly maintaining their buildings, and that is completely unacceptable,” Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts said in a statement.

“The current dispute resolution process is not effective, so we want to work with the Residential Tenancy Branch to better protect and maintain affordable housing in our city,” Watts said.



am i shocked

May 29, 2012 at 2:40pm

Any landlord that has to be forced into providing heat, water and electricity and doing basic maintenance should be thrown into prison or deported.

Steve Y

May 29, 2012 at 8:17pm

This is stupid. We don't need laws for this sort of thing. If your landlord doesn't provide heat, MOVE OUT!!!


May 29, 2012 at 9:55pm

Gee, I wonder if increased regulation will lead to higher rent. I wonder if that will be followed by cries of unfairness by these same activists, who don't have a chance in hell of ever understanding that what they're doing only harms the quality of life of the very people they're trying to help.

Taxpayers R Us

May 31, 2012 at 6:13pm

Excellent move! I'm going to venture a safe guess that Surrey has some of the worst landlords possible, and - provided that this legislation is enforced - this is a good start to a fix.

Ripped off

Apr 24, 2013 at 9:51pm

So I was just verbally attacked by my landlord, who has just now decided to type up an evition notice on his computer at his mother's insistance, saying we havent paid rent, and since the insist that we pay by CASH only, we have no proof we paid, he dated it for the 20th , a 10 day notice to evict, myself, spouse & children...wow!! Come from India & disobey all rules, kick out families & rent out substandard places at a high rate, take money and rip people off!!....all I can say is KARMA! thx for listening to my rant :)

Martin Dunphy

Apr 24, 2013 at 10:09pm

Ripped off:

Contact the Residential Tenancy Branch, Acorn, and the Tenants Rights Action Centre to determine your rights. You cannot be evicted on such short notice, and your landlord cannot demand cash payment. He also must provide a receipt.