Short Terms Rentals not Protected


In a previous post, I discussed the issue of whether a rental disclosure statement protects an owner from a rental restriction bylaw with respect to Air BnB use of a strata lot: spoiler alert, it does not.

The owner as noted in my previous post had purchased a strata lot and was renting it out on a short-term, Air BnB type rental. The owner had been relying on the rental disclosure statement filed by the owner developer to rent out the strata lot despite the fact that there was a rental restriction bylaw. The Supreme Court found that the rental disclosure statement did not protect the strata lot for short term rentals. The owner appealed (HighStreet Accommodations Ltd v The Owners, Strata Plan BCS 2478, 2019 BCCA 64) arguing that the judge had interpreted section 143 of the Strata Property Act too narrowly, erroneously limiting the owner's right to deal with the strata lot as the owner saw fit in the absence of an applicable restriction.

The Court of Appeal noted:
[42] As noted, the purpose of the SPA is to protect purchasers of strata properties, balance the interests of stakeholders and ensure consistency, fairness and equity among owners. After a strata lot is purchased, the primary stakeholders in question are the individual strata lot owners and the collective membership of a strata corporation. Their respective rights and interests are the focus of the statutory scheme the SPA establishes. Although the interests of tenants and other occupants are impacted, in my view those are largely incidental. 
In the end, the Court of Appeal upheld the previous decision and found that the grace period did not apply to the owner, the rental restriction bylaw was effective.





TAEYA FITZPATRICK

Taeya Fitzpatrick has specialized in strata law for most of her practice, has won cases for her clients in the BC Supreme Court, the BC Court of Appeal, and assisted with a client succeeding in defending a Civil Resolution Tribunal claim. Taeya offers full services to a strata corporation or a strata owner from redrafting the strata’s bylaws, collection of outstanding strata fees or other charges, issues with bylaw enforcement, to amending the strata plan. For more information on the services provided, you can reach Taeya by email, phone: 250-762-6111, or at her Web Page.

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