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Landlord/tenant rights, dealing with problems, where to get help...

Issues with Neighbouring Tenants and Marijuana 

Posts: 1

Posted On: 2/3/2015
Posts: 1
We are renting in a multi-unit building in Toronto.

For the past few months we have been having issues with neighbouring tenants smoking marijuana, which floods the corridors and enters our unit under the front door.

Management has been moderately responsive, providing guards/weatherstripping for our door, and sending letters out to tenants, but the smell continues to enter our unit once every few days.

We have put in a request to transfer units.

What are our rights in this situation?

All the readily available units have just been renovated, with a market price about $500 more than what we pay.

Can we negotiate?

Can we ask to have our moving costs covered?

All information would be much appreciated.
Posts: 4018

Posted On: 2/6/2015
Posts: 4018
Hi There,

Thanks for sharing your question and situation with us. We can appreciate that this is a frustrating situation.

From my understanding, you are renting a unit in a larger complex, and you have made repeated requests to the landlord to help with the smoke entering your unit from neighbouring tenants but they haven't fixed the problem completely.

The short answer to your question is it is the smoke is interfering with your reasonable enjoyment of your unit and you do have some rights under the Residential Tenancies Act (RTA).

According to the Landlord and Tenant Board your landlord/property management:

Remedies Available to Tenants

Inform the landlord

If a tenant has a maintenance problem, the first thing they should do is make a written request to the landlord, asking the landlord to fix the problem.

The tenant can write the landlord a letter, or in some cases, landlords have a “maintenance” or “work order” request form that can be completed. The tenant should keep a copy of their written request.

If the landlord does not fix the problem

If, after being informed, the landlord does not fix the problem within a reasonable time, the tenant can:

- report the problem to their local government or the Investigation and Enforcement Unit (IEU),
- file an application to the Board, or
- do both of these things.

If you can, write down all the dates and information about when you spoke to the landlord/property management about this issue, calls to the office etc. this can help you if the situation continues.

The landlord may be permitted to evict tenants if they have committed an illegal act within the building:

The tenant or another occupant of the rental unit has committed an illegal act or is carrying on an illegal business other than described in reason #1 above, at the residential complex, or the tenant has permitted someone else to do so.

You may wish to contact the Landlord and Tenant Board to confrim this information and to ask more question about your personal situation and whether or not you may qualify to have your rent reduced in this situation or compensation with moving expenses.

The information provided above is not legal advice. If you want legal advice please consult a community legal clinic or a lawyer about your particular situation.

I hope this information is helpful. Please let us know if you have further questions and if there is any follow up to your question/situation.

Information & Referral Specialist, CIRS
Your Settlement.Org Team