BRITISH COLUMBIA

Vancouver Landlord, Tenant Pet Policy Rights Under Review (POLL)

06/05/2013 07:37 EDT | Updated 08/05/2013 05:12 EDT
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Landlords may lose their right to refuse potential pet-owner tenants if Vancouver city council gets its way.

City councillor Tim Stevenson will table a motion next week to reduce landlords' right to turn away potential renters with pets.

"Many people say it is extremely difficult to find a place that allows pets. I'm just trying to find a way to break down the barriers," Stevenson told The Province.

The motion has already picked up the support of Mayor Gregor Robertson, CTV News reports.

According to a city roundtable report on housing, pet owners face "extreme" discrimination when prospecting rentals. But before any final decision can be made on Stevenson's motion, provincial legislation must change first.

Current provincial bylaws give landlords the right to turn down, restrict the size and limit the number of pets a tenant may keep on their property. B.C.'s tenancy legislation also gives landlords the right to collect pet damage deposits.

However, not everyone's on board with Stevenson's motion.

"We've actually had cases where people have been sued in the past where they've had new tenants come in and there has been some pet dander left over. Their children had an allergic reaction," Rental Housing Council of B.C. president and CEO Amy Spencer told News 1130.

"It's is a very individual choice. I'm a renter and have a pet, and pets to me are a privilege and not a right."

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