With thousands of properties advertised for rent during the Olympics and just 68 special business licences issued, city officials hosted an information session last night to field questions on landlord and tenant rights and responsibilities.
Under the city’s temporary accommodation bylaw, people who want to rent out their homes during the Games — for less than 30 days — must apply for a special business licence, said Celine Mauboules, a housing planner with the City of Vancouver.
The licence costs $106.
No licence is required for homeowners looking to rent out a single room.
Several websites facilitate the rental process but do not require homeowners to have a licence before submitting a listing, said Mark Szekely, who runs rent2010.net.
“People do have that responsibility, but we don’t check since we’re not in property management,” Szekely said.
Some 2,000 rental listings are currently being advertised on rent2010.net.
The bylaw is not intended to stop people from profiting from the Olympics, but to protect Games-time visitors and tenants from being exploited, Mauboules said.
“We want to educate landlords and tenants,” she said.
Right now, tenants cannot be evicted from their dwellings for any reason other than tenant default, meaning landlords can’t kick them out in favour of a visitor willing to pay more on a short-term basis, Mauboules said.
Tenants, however, also have rules to abide by, she said. For instance, tenants cannot sublet their dwellings during the Games without landlord permission.