If you are a property owner and want to rent any building containing four or less rental units to a tenant, you may need to comply with the City of London’s Residential Rental Units Licensing By-Law. Single detached dwellings, semi-detached dwellings, duplexes, triplexes, and fourplexes in the city of London are subject to the By-Law. However, rental units in apartment and townhouse buildings are exempt. You may also be exempt if the property is your principal residence and you want to rent it out for a specified period of time.
Purpose of the By-Law
The By-law was put into place to address sub-standard housing conditions in rental units and to protect the amenity, character and stability of residential areas. By licensing rental units, the City is better able to identify and remedy unsafe and/or unhealthy building conditions in smaller scale residential rental properties.
In order to be licenced, property owners must pay a licence fee of $25 and complete an application package, which includes:
An Application for each rental property.
A Self-Certification Checklist for each rental unit, which assists property owners in determining whether their properties comply with the City of London Property Standards By-Law. Some of the items required for inspection include: interior and exterior maintenance; electrical/HVAC; windows; and ceiling heights. Landlords must provide tenants with a completed checklist.
A copy of a recent Fire Inspection Report indicating compliance with the current Fire Protection and Prevention Act for each rental property. If an inspection has not been completed, your licence application will be accepted and the City will request the inspection on your behalf. The Fire Prevention Office will then contact you to schedule the inspection.
You can renew your license by submitting a renewal application with the annual licence fee of $25. However, if any alterations have been made to the rental property since the licence was issued that changed the number of rental units or the number of bedrooms in the rental units, the licence application will be reviewed as a new application and may require repeat inspections. It is not necessary to re-submit completed Self-Certification Checklists or to have another Fire Inspection. However, fire and/or property standards inspections may be requested at a later date.
Rental properties are subject to periodic random inspection by the City to verify compliance. A property owner and tenant will receive a notice about one month prior to the inspection. This provides the tenant with the opportunity to advise their landlord of any deficiencies they require be addressed. Tenants will also have the opportunity to speak with the City inspector during the inspection.
If any violations are found, the property owner will be given a specified time period to remedy them. Violations such as mould or smoke alarms will be dealt with by agencies such as the Health Unit or Fire Prevention. If violations are not corrected before the compliance date, a re-inspection fee of $95 will be issued to the landlord.
Any person who contravenes any provision of the By-Law is subject to a fine upon conviction. The maximum fine for a person upon first conviction is $25,000 and for a corporation is $50,000. The maximum fines for subsequent convictions are double the maximum initial conviction.