Thinking About Renting Your Condo?
There is a wide range of opinions when it comes to rental units in condominiums. Some condo owners and condo boards believe that renters don’t take proper care of the condo building. They believe renters tend to cause excessive noise problems, invite friends in to use the fitness facility, and generally don’t take the proper care to protect the condo property. Constant moving in and out of the building causes elevator delays, damage, excessive garbage, and parking problems.
On the other hand, renters can be a great way to introduce someone to condo living. Before buying a condo, a tenant can rent on a trial basis. They can determine if condo living is the right lifestyle for them. Renters also get to know the building and their neighbours and can better decide if this is the right fit. A renter who chooses to buy is likely to get involved in the condo community, attend condo meetings, express their opinions, and serve on the board.
A common practice in condo buildings, is the popularity of rental through international sites such as VRBO (vacation rentals by owner) or AIRBNB. For a condo owner who travels frequently, this could be a great way to collect some extra income from your property. These sites offer low cost options for promoting your condo worldwide. You have the option to rent daily, weekly, or for whatever minimum term you choose. Each company charges fees to cover their costs of managing their website to advertise the available properties.
Because rentals can be a source of problems, many condo corporations choose to either limit or ban them. The condominium By-laws will explain the rules for renting a unit. Some can be quite general, specifying just the length of the rental period, perhaps a minimum of 6 months. Most condos do this to cut down on frequent moves. Other condos have very detailed rules relating to lengthy rental periods; defined times for moves & elevator use; fees imposed for each move; and specific guidelines for informing the Board of Directors of your intention to offer your unit for rental. And other condo corporations completely prohibit renting altogether.
If rentals are allowed, here is a checklist to follow to ensure a smooth rental relationship with your tenants:
- Check your condo documents (By-laws, Common Element Rules) to ensure you follow the guidelines for renting your unit.
- Be sure to use a proper lease agreement – Form 6, NB Standard Lease Agreement
- Make use of Section E of the Lease Agreement which allows you to specify certain conditions pertaining to smoking, parking, pets, number of occupants, etc.
- Check references thoroughly
- Ensure your tenant is fully aware of the By-laws and Common Element Rules
- Inspect your unit at least twice per year
To be sure that the governing documents are the right fit for your building, each condominium corporation should review what is currently in place and make amendments, if necessary. This normally involves the condo corporation’s By-laws and Common Element Rules. Remember, amendments must be approved by the Director of Condominiums in New Brunswick. Once approved, the documents must be registered with the Land Titles Office. This process is usually handled by a lawyer to ensure the changes are valid and are enforceable.
For more information on making changes to a condominium corporation’s documents, check out the “events” tab. Seminars offered by CCI NB can provide details about making amendments to condo documents and answer questions about the process.
Service New Brunswick, Residential Tenancies Act