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NDG Housing and Tenant’s rights - Resource Guide

The NDG Community Council’s resource guide for housing and tenant’s rights hopes to provide some general information about housing to the public by covering a wide range of topics. This guide is non-exhaustive but covers important issues such as emergency housing facilities as well as concrete answers to often asked questions.

FIND SOME KEY POINTS IN NDG & AROUND

Logis Action NDG

Logis Action NDG

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Services:
- Apartment problems
- Social housing
- Rent increase calculation

LogisAction is a tenant’s rights organization and a service of proximity of information to tenants helping resolve issues relating to tenancy and tenancy law.

Our mission is to offer a service of assistance and accompaniment to tenants of the Notre-Dame-de-Grâce region, especially those living under the poverty line, to solve the problems surrounding their residential leases or to assist in the search for affordable housing by providing them with consultation, education and information services regarding tenant law and the approaches and resources that can improve their housing. We also assist them with the procedures for obtaining social housing.
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ROMEL

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WEBSITE

R.O.M.E.L Regroupement des Organismes du Montreal
Ethnique pour le Logement

6555, Chemin de la Côte-des-Neiges, suite 400
(514)341-1057

Multilingual services, specialized in immigrantsand refugees
Housing bank of listings and good landlords
ROMEL assists prospective tenants to find adequate housing that meets their needs

Monday to Friday
9:00 - 12:00
13:00 - 17:00
Friday until 16:00
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HEAD & HANDS

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WEBSITE

Legal Services 
Head & Hands offers a free legal clinic to clients of all ages to meet with volunteer lawyers, and our Legal Coordinator works one-on-one with you ages 12-25. Our Legal Coordinator is also a Commissioner of Oaths.

*Our Legal Coordinator is a paralegal, not a lawyer
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Régie du logement

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WEBSITE

Created on October 1, 1980, the Régie du logement is a specialized administrative tribunal that holds exclusive jurisdiction in matters of rental housing to hear all applications pertaining to leases.

Its mission is described in the Act respecting the Régie du logement and many of its operating mechanisms are enacted by regulations made under that Act.

In order to promote more harmonious relations between lessors and lessees and ensure that each party complies with the obligations arising from the lease, the legislator entrusted the Régie with a double mandate: providing the public with adequate information and with effective recourses in the event that a party fails to comply with its obligations.

NDG social housing map

USEFUL LINKS

GUIDE - Quoi faire après un incendie? Le Service de sécurité incendie de Montréal met à votre disposition cet outil qui saura vous guider dans les étapes à franchir à la suite d’un incendie. 

Rental Board’s website

rdl.gouv.qc.ca

Information guide for young tenants  

monappart.ca

Legal information on housing

educaloi.qc.ca

Regroupement of housing committees of Quebec (RCLALQ)

rclalq.qc.ca

Front d’Action Populaire en Réaménagement Urbain (FRAPRU)

frapru.qc.ca

Financial ressouces for low income tenants:

Free energy efficiency visits in your appartment

Econologis*

Financial support for low income families to help pay the rent

Shelter allowance*

Subsidised housing (HLM)

OMHM *

*These programs have eligibility requirements

Your right to stay as a tenant

This document answers basic questions about your right to renew your lease and receive compensation if evacuated from your apartment during major repairs.

Your right to refuse a rent increase

Document from the Regroupement des Comités Logement et Associations de Locataires du Québec (RCLALQ) on rent increases. 

Rent increase calculation

Form from the Rental Board (Régie du Logement) that helps you calculate if the rent increase you got is fair.

Cockroaches

Information leaflet on cockroaches

Bedbugs

Information leaflet on bedbugs

Formal Demand (template)

The first official step if a landlord is not addressing repairs, safety and/or pests is to write a letter and have it sent by registered mail (from the post office). This letter must be written in the language of the lease. The letter attached provides the basic format for a letter to a landlord (available in French and English). This step is necessary for filing a complaint with the Rental board (Régie du logement) and the city inspectors. The city inspectors can be contacted without a letter if it is a safety emergency. For example, no locks or broken entryway door, missing fire detectors, blocked fire escapes

Your rights as a tenant

A quick introduction to your rights as a tenant.

Transferring (assigning)  your lease or subletting

 

Information document from the Régie du Logement.  (Note: if you want to transfer your lease, but don’t know the process yet, make sure you know the process before you start.  Call us if you have questions.)

*This FAQ is not a legal opinion or legal advice. To find out the specific rules for your situation, consult a lawyer or a notary.*

Security deposits

[accordion]

[item title="Can a landlord ask for a deposit to start a lease for keys or furniture or first and last month’s rent?"]

No, in Quebec, the landlord cannot request a deposit.

[/item]

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Heat

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[item title="At what point does the landlord have to turn on the heat?"]

There is no set date, it is based on the temperature indoors. Therefore, a clause in the lease of a specific start or end period for heating is not justifiable. The temperature should be around 21°C. If your apartment is cold, you can record readings from a thermometer with time of day and the temperatures on the outside. The temperature should be taken in the middle of each room one metre from the floor. Those notes could be taken as proof in case of a disagreement.

If the heating goes off due to a malfunction to the heating system, it must be remedied immediately. Even 24 hours is not considered acceptable at certain points of the year. The landlord must provide emergency heating until the situation is remedied.

[/item]

[item title="There is no heat in building and the landlord isn’t doing anything about it! What should I do? "]

If there is no heat at all and it is cold outside, this is considered an urgent situation. That means that if you have told the landlord about the problem and he or she hasn’t responded, or if you have not been able to reach the landlord, you are allowed to spend money to make necessary repairs or purchase fuel for the heating system. Keep your receipts for you have the right to be reimbursed. You can also contact the city inspectors and alert them to the problem. The phone number to reach them is 311.

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[item title="There is some heat in my apartment, but it goes on and off, and it’s still cold inside. What should I do? "]

This is considered a less urgent, but still very important problem. In this case you can write a registered letter to the landlord explaining the problem and asking for it to be fixed within 10 days.  If your landlord doesn’t reply, you can then make a formal complaint to the city inspectors and file a case at the rental board.

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[/accordion]

Lease termination

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[item title="Can I terminate the lease at any point as long as a 3 month notice is given?"]

No, there are only a few reasons a tenant can terminate the lease by giving a two months notice  during the rental period:

- Acceptance to a unit in low-rental housing.

 - In case of conjugal violence or sexual abuse.

 - The tenant can no longer occupy the dwelling because of a disability.

  - The tenant is a senior that has been accepted permanently to a long term care or residential facility.

If you are experimenting one of those situations, you have to send a two months notice with an attestation showing that you have to leave by registered mail. Keep a copy for yourself. If you want to know more about the process, you can call us or consult the Éducaloi  Website.

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[item title="I still want to go during the lease, what are my options? "]

If you do not meet the above criteria, then you have three choices:

$1·         Make a written agreement with your landlord (in case both parties agree)

$1·         Subletting your apartment (in case you want to return)

$1·         Assigning your lease to another tenant.

In all three cases, you must notify the owner, it is important to keep any written agreement you may make your own tracks.

[/item]

[item title="What are the steps to take if I want to make an agreement with my landlord?"]

If you make an agreement with your landlord, it is important to put it in writing and for the document to be signed by both you and your landlord. You should each have a signed copy of the agreement. The agreement should include your contact information, the date when you hear that the agreement finishes and any information that you might find relevant.

[/item]

[item title="What is the difference between sub-letting and an assignment of lease? "]

The difference between a sublease and an assignment of lease is based on a question: do you intend to move back into the apartment?

If you plan to travel a few months and would like to return to your apartment, subletting is probably best suited to your needs. You remain responsible for your lease, and can return to your apartment at the end of your sublease.

If you do not plan on returning, the assigning the lease may be the solution that best suits your situation. You do not keep your obligations in the lease.

[/item]

[item title="What are the steps to subletting or assigning my lease?"]

The owner must be contacted in writing with the name and address of the new tenant; this should also include the start date of the assignment or sublease. The owner has 15 days to accept or decline. After 15 days we assume that the owner accepts the tenant and conditions. Keep in mind that they may ask for any additional costs - associated with relocation ( as verification of credit : credit check) .

If the owner refuses it must be for legitimate reasons. If the owner provides reasons that do not appear to be serious, the tenant has the right to request the Board to consider the validity of the arguments of the owner. A hearing may be called at which the sub-tenant or person to whom the transfer is assigned must be present as a witness. The tenant may be compensated if participation in the hearing should lead to financial losses.

For more information , call us or visit the Régie du logement's website.

[/item]

[item title="Can a landlord terminate the lease to allow himself or family members to move in? "]

Yes, if and only if he is repossessing the lease to have a residence for himself, his children or his parents, or for any other relative or person connected by marriage or civil union, if he is the main source of support for that person. (For example, this can include a mother-in-law, sister-in-law, son-in-law, etc., as long as the landlord is the principal source of support for this relative.) It can also be a residence for a spouse from whom he is separated or divorced, but for whom he is still the main source of support

A landlord who wants to repossess a dwelling must notify the tenant in writing six months before the lease ends, if the lease is for a set length of time over six months. You have one month to accept or refuse the repossession. If you don’t reply, it is assumed that you have refused to leave the dwelling.

[/item]

[item title="Can a landlord evict me from my apartment?"]

Yes, the landlord can terminate the lease by evicting the tenants if and only if :

Your lease was terminated by the Régie du logement (Rental Board) because you haven’t followed your obligations as a tenant (ex.: you did not pay your rent.) In that case, you had an hearing at the Régie, following which you received an notice of eviction.

A landlord can also evict when he wants to divide up the rental unit, demolish it, enlarge it or change what it is used for. For example, a landlord might want to turn a residential building into an office building. In this case, the eviction notice must be received by the tenant six months before the lease ends and should indicate the reason for the eviction and the date on which it will occur. Under those conditions, when you receive an eviction notice, you have one month from the time you receive the notice to notify the landlord whether you accept or refuse to leave. Contrary to a repossession, if you don’t do this, it is assumed that you have accepted to leave.

[/item]

[item title="Can I contest an eviction or lease termination? "]

The tenant has one month to give their written response or it is assumed that they accept the repossession or eviction.

For a Repossession:

            If you refuse to leave, you can try to reach an agreement with your landlord. Otherwise, the landlord can repossess the dwelling with the authorization of the Régie du logement. To do this, the landlord must apply to the Régie within one month of receiving your refusal or at the end of the time limit for your reply. At the hearing before the Régie, he must demonstrate that he truly intends to repossess the dwelling for the reasons stated in the notice.

For an Eviction:

            If you want to refuse the eviction, it is very important to notify your landlord and to file an application with the Régie du logement within the time limit. The landlord must prove that he truly intends to divide, demolish, enlarge or change the use of the apartment, as the law allows.

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HOW TO BE INVOLVED

ORGANISATIONS & COMMUNITY GROUPS

CONCERTATION

NDG HOUSING TABLE

-The NDG Housing Table brings tenants' rights groups, co-ops, community organisations, non-profit housing co-ordinators and developers together to share information and work on collective solutions to local housing issues. Together they develop a strategy for healthy, affordable housing for all residents in NDG.

RESIDENTS, INDIVIDUALS, BUSINESS

How can I participate in housing initiatives?

    a- You can volunteer:
Many organisations in NDG need your help. Follow our Calendar Activities or visit Volunteer Page and leave your CV

    b- You can get involved in local social activism:
Activism is quite simple taking action to effect social change. Join the committee for a housing service in NDG, contact us at  (514) 484-1471


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CONTACTS

(514) 484-1471

fax: (514) 484-1687

ndgcc@ndg.ca