A Roof Over My Head :

A Guide for Senior Renters in British Columbia





A Roof Over My Head : A Guide for Senior Renters in British Columbia



Important Resources for Senior Renters in British Columbia


Table of Contents

Is this booklet for you?

A. Learn the language of renting
B. Learn your rights and responsibilities as a renter

Find the Right Place for You
A. Check out the place ahead of time
B. Talk with the landlord
C. Find an affordable place
D. Apply for subsidy if necessary (SAFER)
E. Know what a landlord can /cannot ask you

Your Tenancy Agreement: A Must Have!
A. What is a tenancy agreement?
B. What can a landlord ask about your income?
C. How should a landlord protect your information?
D. When should you sign a lease?
E. What is a security deposit ?
F. How can you make your tenancy agreement clear?
G. Why does your landlord want a contact for emergencies?

Moving In
A. How will you ever move?
B. Should you have the locks changed?
C. What is a move-in inspection?

Living in Your Apartment: Common Questions
A. When is my rent due?

B. What can I do if my rent increases?
1. Are the rules the same if I live in subsidized housing?
2. Is my rent increase fair?

C. Do I have the right to privacy?

D. How do I plan for emergencies?
1. Should I make a safety plan?
2. Can some emergencies be avoided?
3. How can I be safer in my apartment or rented home?

What can you reasonably expect as a renter?
A. Help from your landlord or building manager 
B. Peace and quiet
C. Visitors

Care of the Place
A. What are your landlord’s responsibilities? 

1. To take care of the building 
2. Not to charge for extras 
3. To maintain services and facilities

B. What are your responsibilities as a tenant?

1. To repair damage versus “reasonable wear and tear”
2. To hang pictures with care
3. To keep the suite clean
4. To control your pet
5. To abide by apartment rules and policies
6. To understand your rights when ownership changes

Having Problems?

A. Start easy
B. Go up the ladder
C. Get support
D. Try arbitration

Safety and Security

A. Know about the types of harms that seniors may experience
B. Know how to deal with abuse or neglect
C. Know when to involve the police

Taking Care of Yourself: Looking Ahead

Moving On: Ending the Tenancy

A. What If you want to move?
B. What if you’re being asked to leave?
C. What if you have a health problem or disability?
D. How do you know if your cleaning and move-out checklists are in order?
E. What if your security deposit is delayed or withheld?

Test Yourself

Community Resources and Other Helpful Information

Written Resources You Can Ask For

Information for Apartment Owners and Managers


A Statement of Seniors’ Rights


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Last  updated  27/11/03