Sask. government introduces rental legislation amendments
The government of Saskatchewan has introduced amendments to rental legislation to address tenant concerns about cannabis, the eviction process and disposing of abandoned goods.
The Residential Tenancies Amendment Act accounts for the upcoming legalization of cannabis. The act gives tenants the right to prevent the possession, use and sale of cannabis in a rental unit, along with growing plants.
“Through this legislation, government is ensuring that the balance between landlords’ and tenants’ rights is maintained,” Justice Minister and Attorney General Don Morgan said in a written release. “These amendments address concerns we’ve heard from landlords about issues such as the upcoming legalization of cannabis and abuses of the eviction process.”
The changes to legislation also repeal parts of The Residential Tenancies Act about tenant eviction put in place in 2006. The old legislation required a tenant bring half a month’s rent to Court of Queen’s Bench during an appeal of an eviction hearing decision. Instead, the renter will need to keep paying rent to the landlord until the appeal is over.
The government says the change is in response to ongoing concerns about tenants exploiting the appeal process.
Also, landlords will now be able to throw out any abandoned goods if the total value is under $1,500. Landlords used to need an order from the Office of Residential Tenancies before disposing anything.
The government expects the act will come into effect in the spring of 2018.