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Frequent Asked Questions

Our Qualification on Property Management

How to choose a Property Manager?

To shortlist a property manager for managing your property, we believe you should ask the following questions to the candidates:

(1)Are you Licensed?
(2) How long have you been working in real estate?
(3) Will you charge me if you can’t find tenant?
(4) Do you have references or testimonials?
(5) How will you market my rental property?
(6) How do you determine rent amount?
(7) Do you conduct property inspections regularly?

What is the qualification of Your Property Manager?

We are a licensed and insured professional Property Manager by the Real Estate Council of British Columbia.

We have a profound knowledge of real estate areas from experience and on-going education.  Our rental property management license is providing a real estate service on behalf of a fully-licensed real estate brokerage REMAX. Besides, all our support staff are also expected to complete the education from UBC Real Estate Council licensing course and pass the examination. This is to ensure the service quality to our clients.

Visit our Teams page for more details.

Why should I hire a licensed Property Manager, like you to manage my property?

If you lack the time or expertise needed for day-to-day management of your property, an expert property manager can help you make a big difference in your investment success.

We are well-trained, licensed and experienced property managers from REMAX. As a licensed manager, our services to clients always reflect the BC Tenancy Act and accompanying regulations, we adopt the standard lease agreement template from BC Residential Tenancy Branch (RTB).

In addition, you will receive an official Monthly/Annual Statement from REMAX, itemizes your rental income, expenses during the month and calendar year, these official documents are useful for you to file your annual tax return and prove your property is rented in a particular month. We believe that hiring a licensed manager is the right approach you should take for protecting your investment. Visit this page for more details.

Our Property Management Services

What is your service area in the greater Vancouver area?

We focus on Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Surry, Richmond and Coquitlam at the moment. If you are looking for property management service in other areas, we are happy to refer you to our property managers in REMAX.

What type of rental unit do you manage?

Our main focus is on residential rental for Condo, House, Townhouse and Duplex. We also work on commercial rental.

What is the reason on taking 3D Virtual Reality video from my property, shouldn't photos be good enough?

Having photos attached on ads has already a norm for promoting rental, we want to do more than that so that your property will get more attention from the public, and you will find a good tenant faster than others.

3D Virtual Reality is a powerful tool to let the prospective tenants view the interior layout of your property online using their computer or mobile device anytime, without scheduling to visit your property onsite. We don’t want you to miss out any opportunity of finding a good tenant, especially your property is located in the area with many opening rental listings.

By the way, we’ll NOT charge any photo or Video fee to our clients. 

Visit this page for more details.

How quick you will handle the property viewing request and application from perspective tenants?

We target to reply the viewing request and start to process the received application in 24 hours. We don’t want to miss any opportunity of finding a good tenant.

Why we use a tenant application form for tenant screening?

Tenants must submit us an application form should they want to apply our rental property.

The main purpose of application form are :
(a) As an official application from serious tenant
(b) Clarify what is being offered to rent
(c) Gather tenant information on one central form
(d) Obtain consent for reference/credit checks

See more our Application Form

How could you help owner to avoid rent arrears?

We keep the front door very tight, meaning we only let a good tenant placed on your property.

We carefully screen each prospective tenant application and verify his/her background, such as rental history, employment and credit history. We will not jeopardize owners’ interest by recommending a non-qualified tenant to owner.

How long will it take to rent out my property?

There is no simple answer. We will do a detailed analysis of the rental market, factoring in the condition, location, and amenities of your property along with the current rental market. According to our experience, the tenant placement usually takes from 1 – 6 weeks depends on the neighborhood, price, and the condition of the property.

We usually obtain feedback from the prospective tenant after their viewing of your property, and discuss with you to adjust any marketing strategy for making sure the property will be rented out successfully with your best interest.

Will I know what is going on with my property?

Absolutely. We will communicate with you throughout our agreement and keep you aware of any issues that may arise. We will contact you at reasonable times to discuss any repairs and notify you of the rental status.

Will you visit & inspect my property during the rental period?

Yes, we will visit and inspect your property periodically to spot any obvious areas of concern, and will take the necessary follow-up action.

Regular inspection will help to protect your property value and to ensure your Owners’ Home Insurance remain valid as required by the insurer.

Will you help me to purchase and sell my rental property?

We are from REMAX. If you need assistance in the buying or selling of property we can always refer an experienced and professional Realtor from REMAX or reputable real estate brokerages to you.

I am currently out-of-town, can I sign the necessary document remotely?

Yes, Document can be signed in a hard copy or electronically online. e-sign  is simple, quick, secure and legally binding, and save your hassle, especially you are out-of-town.

Here is the tutorial (less than 2 minutes) for how the online signing works. 

Tenancy Agreement

Why is a Written Tenancy agreement important?

A tenancy agreement establishes the right and responsibilities for landlords and tenants.

If a landlord would like to prohibit or limit something within tenancy it will generally need to be written in the agreement.

What are Standard & Addendum in Tenancy Agreement ?

RTA (Residential Tenancy Act) states that a landlord must prepare a written agreement that must include prescribed standard terms.

A landlord may add additional terms (addendum) to an agreement so long as the terms are distinguishable as separate from the standard terms and is consistent with the RTA.

We will work together with the landlords and tenants to prepare both the Standard & Addendum in Tenancy Agreement.

Can I add pet clause in the Addendum in Tenancy Agreement?

A landlord may include a term that allows pet, prohibits pets, or restricts the size, kind or number of pets a tenant may keep.

This does not apply to guide and service dogs. All tenancies are subject to the Guide Dog and Service Dog Act.

Can I add smoking clause in the Addendum in Tenancy Agreement?

A landlord may prohibit the smoking/vaping of tobacco, cannabis or any other combustible material in the rental property, and specify it in the tenancy agreement

Can a landlord make changes to tenancy agreement after the agreement is signed?

With the tenant’s consent, which is given by having all parties initial and date the change, a landlord may make changes to an agreement.

Changes may not alter the content of a standard term.

Our Property Management Pricing

How do you charge your clients?

There are 3 major categories of our Property Management services :

  • Tenant Placement Services (i.e. we find Tenant for you)
  • Property Management Services (i.e. we manage your property after the tenant Placement)
  • Specialized Services (i.e. we handle your specific needs)

Typically, you will be charged a flat fee per our Tenant Placement Service, and a percentage of the monthly rent for monthly Property Management services. As for the specialized Services, this has to be case-by-case based on your specific need.

Our pricing policy is simple & straight-forward, and we guarantee no hidden fee. Visit this page for more details.

Will you charge any application fee, setup fee, admin fee, registration fee ?

No, we will not charge any application fee, setup fee, registration fee and booking fee to both owner and tenant.  We’re proud not to charge these hidden fees and have straight-forward pricing to our clients. Visit this page for more details.

I don’t see your pricing are published on your website? Is there any reason for that?

We do want to publish our prices for transparency. However, we find that there is no one-size-fit-all price quote for all customer and all situations, and we hate to charge our clients more than they should be.  Hence, we prefer to take an approach by understanding our clients’ needs before quoting them a reasonable and fair price.

Please be assured our pricing policy is simple & straight-forward, you will not over-charge and charge any hidden fees. Visit this page for more details.

Payment & Trust Account

What is Trust Account? Why it's is so important?

Trust Account is an account where money is deposited by one for the benefit of another. The money is devoted to a particular purpose (e.g. for rental payment) and cannot or should not be diverted for other.

How will you handle the payment from Tenant?

All the payment will go through REMAX directly, meaning that all the money received (including rent, deposit etc. ) will be paid to REMAX trust account, our REMAX finance team will verify and prepare the monthly balance crediting to owner’s destinated bank account. Our Property Manager and staff are NOT allowed to receive rental payment in their own name at any time.

You will receive an official REMAX monthly and annual statements with all the transactions during the period. (See Sample)

What are your methods of monthly rental payment (for Tenant)?

We accept PAD (Pre-Authorized Debit) for monthly rental payment. This is an efficient and secure method of rental payment from tenants. Tenants should complete a Pre-Authorized Debit contract and provide a VOID Cheque or Pre-Authorized Debit form (obtained at your bank) when the lease agreement is signed.  Rental payment will then be automatically debited from the specified account to REMAX Trust account on the first day of each month.

We normally don’t accept personal cheques or cash for rental payment.

What is VOID Cheque? How can I get one?

A void cheque is a cheque with the word “VOID” written across it (See sample here), which prevents anyone from filling out the cheque and using it to make a payment.

We will ask landlord and tenant to provide us a void check for setting up an electronic link to their bank account for automatic rental payments, so that the monthly rent is automatically withdrawn from tenants’ account to our REMAX trust Account, and the rental income is credited to Landlord’ account from the REMAX trust Account.

To prepare a void cheque, simply take one of your cheques and write “VOID” across it in large letters using a pen or permanent marker. Make sure not to cover the numbers in the lower left of the cheque – this is the banking information that is required for us to set up the link to your account.

In case, your bank account is not a chequing Account and you don’t have a bank cheque book, you can talk to your bank, they should be able to issue a VOID Cheque (some bank called VOID Cheque form, in this case) for you quickly.

Will I receive any statement for my rental income? (for Owner/Landlord)

Yes, you will receive an official REMAX monthly and annual statements with all the transactions during the period. (See Sample)

Speculation and Vacancy Tax

What is the speculation and vacancy tax?

Where does the speculation and vacancy tax apply?

How Do I Complete My Declaration for the Speculation and Vacancy Tax?

How Do I Pay the Speculation and Vacancy Tax?

Rent Increase

How often and how much can a landlord raise the rent?

In BC, RTA (Residential Tenancy Act) address permissible and prohibited rent increases. Landlords are not permitted to raise rents except in accordance with the provisions of the RTA (unless an Order is obtained from the Residential Tenancy Branch authorizing a rental increase in your case).

By default, the RTA allows landlords to increase the rent once every 12 months in an amount up to the maximum annual-published percentage amount permitted under the Regulations, which in 2020 is 2.6%

Our property manager will proactively discuss with you on the rent increase for your property annually. Once you agree to the rent increase for the year, the property manager will complete all the paper work and send a Notice-of-Rent-Increase to the tenant with at least 3-month advance notice.

See More : BC Government Website

When should the rent increase notice be delivered to the tenant?

Rent Increase Notice must be delivered to the tenant three whole months notice, in writing, of a rent increase.

E.g. If the rent is due on the 1st of the month and the tenant is given notice any time in January, including Jan 1st, the months are February, March and April, so the increase would begin on May 1st.

Non-Resident Landlord

I am a non-Resident in Canada, Can I own and rent a Property in Vancouver?

The short answer is YES, you can.

However, owning a rental property while residing outside of Canada is always a challenging topic, because you need to understand the local procedure and rules involved and how they apply to you when owning or renting a property.

We recently receive many queries from Hong Kong, asking the similar questions, as they are planning to immigrate or return to Vancouver in next couple years. They want to purchase a new home now and rent it out for a stable income, until they later decide to come to land in or to return to Vancouver.

It is always wise to plan ahead, and you need a professional to provide you a complete and correct information before making the decision of purchasing or renting property in Canada. Always consult your accountant and/or lawyer to understand the detailed accounting procedure and tax rules involved, and how it applies to your case.

As a licensed Property Manager from REMAX Crest, even though you might be on the other side of the world, we can certainly help you find a rental property, find tenants, check in on your property, coordinate property repairs, home insurance, NR4 monthly remittance to CRA (Canada Revenue Agency) …. Most of all, we’ll give you the peace of mind to live and work comfortably abroad.

We have rich experiences on managing non-resident rental property in Greater Vancouver, refer to our information on our website “Non-Resident Property Owner – Renting out your Property in Vancouver while living abroad”

Landlord or Property Manager to access Rental Property

Can Landlord or Property Manager access the rental Property during the tenancy period?

Landlords have rights to access residential rental units in some situations, but there are important restrictions on those rights.

Please refer : Government Web page, which lists out all the scenarios clearly.

Move-In & Move-out

Why is Condition Inspection important?

A condition inspection documents the state of the rental unit at the start (Move-In) and end (Move-Out) of tenancy.

It is a requirement under the RTA (Residential Tenancy Act) for a landlord to schedule and complete a condition inspection with their tenant and failure to do so could result in a landlord forfeiting their right to claim for damages or cleaning.

How to Schedule Condition Inspection?

A landlord must schedule a condition inspection in accordance with the Regulations.
The landlord must offer one opportunity either in writing or orally, if the tenant doesn’t agree they may propose an alternative time.
If an agreement on a date/time can’t be reached or if the tenant doesn’t response, landlord must serve a “Notice of Final Opportunity to Schedule a Condition Inspection”.

Is Landlord required to contact BCHydro for disconnecting the Services after the tenant move-in, and reconnecting after the tenant move-out?

There are 2 scenarios:

(1) If the Utilities is included in the rental terms, landlord will be responsible for the electricity service and bills for the rental property during the rental period.  Landlord should continue to keep the BCHydro service under his/her own account. If the property is a new one without any previous BCHydro service setup, landlord should contact BCHydro to create a new account.

(2) If the Utilities is not included in the rental terms, tenant will be responsible for the electricity bills of the rental property during the rental period. Tenant should contact BCHydro for the setup before the tenancy starts.

On the Landlord side, landlord owner may signup a of “Rental Premise Agreement” with BCHydro.  It is an arrangement for landlord owners to assure no interruption of service between the move-in/move-out of tenants.  i.e. the electricity bills will go to tenant account during the rental period. After the tenant move-out or for vacant (between tenants) rental premises, BC Hydro still keep the electricity service for the owner (under owner account) and to avoid additional disconnection/ reconnection costs for vacated premises.

What you need to do next to signup Rental Premise Agreement with BC Hydro (https://www.bchydro.com/toolbar/contact/rental-premises-agreement/rental-premises-agreement-form.html), the following section on the form online is required

  • Site owner/manager contact information : The existing BC Hydro Account #; Company Name = Your existing account Holder Name; and Your phone #
  • Site owner billing address : Landlord’s residential Address (i.e. your residential address, NOT the rental property address )
  • Add Service Location 1 : The Rental Property Address

You should receive a confirmation letter (or email)  after your submission

** In addition, you should also signup an online account with BCHYdro with e-billing  so that you will receive e-statement by email, instead of paper bills to your rental property. https://app.bchydro.com/BCHCustomerPortal/createProfile.html

 

Change of Landlord

Will the rental agreement continue when new landlord comes?

During the tenancy, new landlord may come (e.g. he/she purchases the rental property from the previous one).

The new landlord has the same rights and duties as the previous one and must follow all the terms of this agreement unless the tenant and new landlord agree to other terms.

What about selling a Tenanted Rental Property?

When a landlord plans to sell a rental property, the tenancy continues. The landlord cannot end a tenancy because they want to sell a rental unit.

Once a property is sold, the buyer becomes the new landlord & the tenancy continues under the same terms. The buyer and the tenants don’t need to sign a new tenancy agreement, but may do so if they both agree.

Two ways a tenancy can be ended if, in good faith, the buyer plans to occupy or use the property for another purpose:

The buyer submits a written request to the seller to end the tenancy before taking possession of the property. Then the seller (or existing landlord) gives the tenant a 2 Month Notice to end tenancy for Landlord’s Use.

Once the buyer takes possession of the property, they can serve a 2 Month Notice to End Tenancy for Landlord’s Use of Property

Business License for Rental Property

Is it required to apply for any license for rental property?

To rent your residential property in the area of City of Vancouver, property owner needs a rental property business licence, even if you hire a property manager.  This includes the typical One-family dwelling, apartment house, and also laneway house and secondary suite and rooming house.

2 types of fee are involved : One-off Application Fee for new business license, and annual recurring license fee, which normally expired each year on December 31.  The license Fee is prorated in the first year based on when the license starts.

More info. can be found in the City of Vancouver Government Website

Understanding the local rules and regulations, as well as licensing requirements, are essential for landlord. It is always unwise to rent out a property without the required licenses and approvals. Talk to your property manager to understand more.

 

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