A reader reminded her landlord of his obligations but in reply he gave her notice to vacate and, should she fail to do so, threatened to move in with her.
It would appear that the three-month notice period has expired and the landlord is now taking a very unusual approach to ensure that the tenant vacates the premises.
He is not only threatening to move in, but also to break into the dwelling should she fail to hand over the keys.
The reader was willing to comply, but could not find premises to rent within the notice period.
She feels that she is being unlawfully evicted and would like to know what her rights are.
See the reader’s question here.
We are not told what these obligations are. But, because a landlord generally has few responsibilities in terms of a lease agreement, one could assume that these are related to repairs and maintenance.
In accordance with the provisions of the Rental Housing Act, the landlord is obliged to perform maintenance on the leased structure and to ensure that it remains habitable.
Threatening to move in to effect an eviction is a somewhat unorthodox approach.
The accepted practice follows the procedures required in the Prevention of Illegal Eviction from and Unlawful Occupation of Land Act, also known as the “Pie” Act.
We are not advised of the provisions of the lease agreement, so we do not know if the landlord is attempting to terminate the lease contrary to an agreed period.
Assuming the notice was given contrary to the agreed term of the lease, the landlord should rely on a breach by the tenant, typically as a result of non-payment.
Should the breach not be remedied, he could follow the eviction procedure under the Pie Act.
It would appear that the landlord, in this instance, was merely irritated by the fact that the reader asked him to comply with certain provisions of their lease agreement and felt justified in terminating the lease.
The reader has rights, which could thwart any endeavours by the landlord.
We must look to the provisions of the Rental Housing Act for assistance.
This statute provides for the enforcement of the provisions of a lease through the Tribunal (a body established under that statute) or through a court of competent jurisdiction.
Instead of making use of a potentially costly litigious approach, the reader could use the process of enforcement through the Tribunal.
The regulations to the Rental Housing Act also provide for the landlord to allow the tenant peaceful and undisturbed possession of the dwelling.
Clearly, the landlord’s intention to cohabit would infringe on this right.
Similarly, the landlord may only gain entry to the dwelling in the manner permitted by the provisions of these regulations.
Finally, the regulations also prevent the landlord from acting in an oppressive or unreasonable way.
Ask the YourProperty experts a question here.