Welcome back folks!
It’s a new year and I hope you haven’t screwed it up already. I did and in an absolutely awful way.
A Novice Mistake
I had a call in date for the sheriff (Eviction) and I forgot to call in.
How I’m Making It Right
Everybody screws up every once in while and when I told Jeff that I had forgotten to call the Sheriff, he informed me that it happens all the time. The difference is that most property management companies are not as transparent as I am. So I called the owner and apologized and told them I will pay the difference in rent from January 4th to February 28th. A couple thousand dollars will ensure I never forget the sheriff again. In a decent system, I’d be able to call them and schedule for the next week so not such a big deal.
How It Works – Residential Tenancies Ontario
- N-4 gives 14 days to pay
- File L-1 with N-4 and Certificate of Service and pay $170 to the Landlord & Tenant Board
- Upon Filing you get 2 Notices of Hearing that state your hearing date. One is for you, one is for the tenant.
- Deliver the tenant’s Notice of Hearing and send in another Certificate of Service
- Wait for the Hearing Date
- Go to the Hearing and hopefully get an Order or Mediated Agreement
- Wait anxiously by your mailbox for the official copy of the Order
- Once you get Landlord & Tenant Board Order wait 11 days for the tenant to pay
- Then finally take your Order down to the Sheriff’s Office and pay $330 to $380
- Wait Some More
- Get a paper that tells you when to call the Sheriff to tell them if your Delinquent tenant is still living a free a life
- You have two hours in which to call and leave a message stating your file number
- Wait until the Sheriff calls you back
- The Sheriff calls and tells you what date and time to be there for the actual honest to goodness eviction
- Sheriff comes to evict your tenants, you change the locks.
- Deadbeat has another 72 hours to remove their stuff and themselves from your life
So long story short January 4th when I was supposed to be calling the Sheriff I was not. I had two apartments one next to the other. One was for January 4th and the other was for January 17th. I thought both call in dates were on the same day. When I discovered my mistake, I had to refile. This cost an additional $240 and I have to wait until February 28th.
How It Works – Commercial Tenancies
- Wait 17 days
- Call Bailiff
- Bailiff comes within a couple of days – Charges $95
- Change locks
So Why A Class Action?
A class action lawsuit is designed especially for cases like this where many people are harmed but the amount of each case is not enough to justify suing the government of Ontario. At the end of day of the day these delays cost landlords as a group hundreds of thousands in losses every single year. Individually the unnecessary delays cost each landlord $2000 – $3000 per case. Individually we cannot sue but as a group we might be able to. This is the entire purpose of class action lawsuits.
The Residential Tenancies Act states…
183. The Board shall adopt the most expeditious method of determining the questions arising in a proceeding that affords to all persons directly affected by the proceeding an adequate opportunity to know the issues and be heard on the matter. 2006, c. 17, s. 183.
I have news people! A landlord is a person! Now of the 12 provinces only Ontario manages to be so unbelievably slow. Seriously, I think the Landlord & Tenant Board is waiting for your predatory tenant to die of old age so they can avoid evicting them.
Do Landlords Want To Evict Tenants?
Hell No! We need tenants money so we can turn around and pay the bank and property taxes and maintenance bills. After that if we have any money left over we could buy a nice chocolate bar. Evicting tenants for no reason is stupid and expensive. You need to advertise for new ones, renovate, have vacancy loss and so on and so forth. Plus every landlord I know is proud of providing housing for people. We provide an essential service.
Give Us A Bone!
Would it kill the government of Ontario to let landlords use private bailiffs? Imagine a world where we could pay $95 and not wait 6-8 weeks for the Sheriff. By the time the landlord gets around to the Sheriff in the GTA the tenant has received 5 notifications that they owe rent and a court order that gives them 11 days to pay or stay. Why give another 6-8 weeks?
The government has a legislative monopoly on this service and they charge over 3 times what private companies doing the same task charge. If they were fast as they are in some regions like Hamilton I wouldn’t bitch so much about it. (Hamilton Sheriff’s are fantastic by the way!) But triple charges and an unbelievably slow, slow, slow service? It’s too much, because the law says I should get expeditious service. The Ontario Government should be sued into the next century for the way they treat landlords.
A lawsuit for millions of dollars would wake them up to the fact that they can indeed be slow as long as they pay for the rental losses the landlords have to suffer. The situation is unacceptable.