21 Sep Security Deposits for Rental Apartments in Kamloops – All You Need to Know
This article answers frequent questions about security deposits for rental apartments in BC.
In BC, landlord and tenant rights and protections are governed by the Residential Tenancy Act of BC. The Act is administered by the Residential Tenancy Branch (RTB).
What is a Security Deposit or “Damage Deposit”?
When a landlord and tenant enter into a “tenancy agreement”, a security deposit is collected, which is held by the landlord until the end of tenancy. The deposit is called a “security deposit” because it secures tenancy of the rental for both the landlord and tenant. Once paid, the landlord cannot decide to rent to someone else, and conversely, if you decide not to move in, the landlord may be able to keep the deposit to secure the unpaid rent.
Before you move in, a move-in inspection must be conducted by the renter and the landlord and noted in the Condition Inspection Report (PDF). During the inspection, the state of the rental and any existing damages are noted. Both parties sign the report if they agree to its details. When your tenancy ends, a move-out inspection is conducted and compared to the move-in inspection report. This helps both parties verify if any damages have been caused by the tenant that are beyond normal wear and tear. See “Inspect the Rental Unit” at the RTB web portal.
How Much Deposit Can a Landlord Ask For?
In BC, a landlord can require the tenant to pay a security deposit of no more than half of one-month’s rent, as specified in the Residential Tenancy Act – Part 2, section 19. If the rental accepts pets, the landlord may also require an additional pet damage deposit of no more than half of one-month’s rent.
How Do I Get My Security Deposit Back from a Landlord?
After providing written notice to the landlord to end tenancy and providing a forwarding address, the tenant must:
- Thoroughly clean the rental and fix any damage they have caused
- Remove all belongings
- Participate in a move-out inspection
- Sign and date the move-out inspection report
A landlord may keep part or all of the damage deposit if:
- There is damage beyond normal wear and tear
- If the landlord goes to arbitration and a decision is made to award them all or part of the damage deposit
- If the tenant fails to provide a forwarding address, in writing, within one year of moving out
If a tenant disagrees with the amount the landlord wishes to deduct from the security deposit, or if the landlord keeps all or part of the deposit without the tenant’s written permission, the tenant may submit a formal dispute resolution application. Much of the time, disputes can be resolved through discussion. See “Solving Problems” at the RTB web portal.
BC Residential Tenancy Resources
- Residential Tenancy Branch
- Tenant Resource & Advisory Centre
- BC Dial-a-Law Residential Tenancy pages
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