Apartments in the Vancouver's West End

Renter relocation resources for owners and developers

Clear, consistent, and frequent communication is vital to ensure a smooth redevelopment process for you and for your renters.

Reduce the impacts of redevelopment on renters

Redevelopment and renewal of Vancouver's existing rental housing is important so that renters today and tomorrow can live in safe, suitable homes. However, redevelopment can displace and stress renters, especially vulnerable ones with fixed or low incomes.

If you apply to redevelop or do major renovations on your rental building, you need to support your renters during the process by following our Tenant Relocation and Protection Policy PDF file (420 KB).

Specifically, you need to create a tenant relocation plan that covers how you will:

  1. Determine if your project requires renters to move
  2. Communicate often with your renters
  3. Compensate and help eligible renters to move out (and back in with a discounted rent, in some cases)

You also need to follow all requirements set out in the BC Residential Tenancy Act External website .

Is your property designated as a single room accommodation (SRA)?

Learn about the steps involved to renovate or redevelop your property

What's in a tenant relocation plan

please note As of May 17, 2018 the 2-month notice to end tenancy for renovation, demolition, and conversion is no longer valid.

Landlords must give 4 months' notice to end tenancy for demolition, renovation or repair, or conversion, and tenants have 30 days to dispute the notice. More information is available from the Residential Tenancy Branch .

Changes to the Provincial Residential Tenancy Act also include right of first refusal, and enhanced compensation requirements. These requirements may apply to renters who are not eligible for additional compensation and assistance under the City of Vancouver Tenant Relocation and Protection Policy.

Learn more about these requirements:

When you apply for a development permit or rezoning that could impact renters, you need to provide a draft tenant relocation plan. The City needs to approve this plan, as part of the application process, before issuing your permit or approving your rezoning.

At minimum, the plan must provide the following to each renter who has lived in your building for one year or more at the time you apply for redevelopment:

  1. Free rent or equivalent financial compensation based on how long the renter has lived in your building:
    Years of tenancy Minimum compensation for the renter
    1 up to 5 2-months' rent
    5 up to 10 3-months' rent
    10 up to 20 4-months' rent
    20 and over 6-months' rent
  2. 4-months notice to end tenancy after all permits are issued, including associated building and trades permits (this requirement comes from the BC Residential Tenancy Act External website)
  3. Assistance with the renter's moving expenses
    Unit they rent Minimum compensation for the renter
    Studio and one-bedroom $750 or arrangement of insured movers
    Two-bedroom $1,000 or arrangement of insured movers
  1. Help finding 3 places to rent, if renter asks for assistance, that are:
    • Leased at no more than the average rents for the area (based on CMHC data)
      • View a map of average rents
      • If the renter has very low income and pays low rent compared to average rents in the area, we may require that you offer them 1 option within 10% of their current rent.
    • Located in Vancouver, with one in their current area
  2. In some cases, the opportunity to rent a unit in your redeveloped building, at a minimum discount of 20% off the unit's new market rent. This applies when the project:
    • Proposes new, secured market rental housing
    • Requires replacement rental housing as set out in the Rental Housing Stock Official Development Plan PDF file (20 KB)
    • Proposes new social housing or replaces existing rental housing with social housing (for example, in certain locations as set out in the West End Community Plan)
  3. Additional support and compensation for vulnerable renters with special circumstances. Support may include:
    • Hiring a tenant relocation consultant with experience helping vulnerable renters
    • Helping tenants apply for rental assistance or social housing
    • Partnering with Vancouver Coastal Health or other mental health services

For details, read the Tenant Relocation and Protection Policy PDF file (420 KB).

Map of average rents

Source: CMHC

How the tenant relocation process fits into redevelopment

1

Before you apply for a rezoning or development permit

Best practices

  •   Carefully consider if your project can avoid relocating renters. Many major upgrades can be done with only minor disruptions or temporary relocations, and may not require them to move permanently.
  •   Identify renters who may need extra help relocating, including seniors and people with disabilities or mental health. Work with a tenant relocation specialist if necessary.
  1. Learn about the City's development process.
  2. Review the following policies:
  3. Contact renters to inform them of your intent to redevelop and encourage those with special circumstances to identify themselves as soon as possible. You should clarify to them that eviction notices won't be issued until all permits are approved. Keep copies of your communications with renters.
  4. Consult with a tenant relocation specialist for assistance with the relocation process on larger projects, especially if most of the renters are vulnerable (seniors or people with disabilities or mental health issues) or pay very low rents compared to the area average.

2

Apply for a development permit or rezoning

Best practices

  •   Submit a Tenant Relocation Application Form as part of your redevelopment application.  
  •   Communicate early and often with renters. Let them know when you intend to redevelop or do major renovations that could impact them. 
  •   Give renters a primary contact person to ask questions about your project and tenant relocation plan.
  1. If your project is covered by the Tenant Relocation and Protection Policy, provide a completed Tenant relocation application form  (246 KB) with your development permit application.
  2. We'll review and comment on your draft tenant relocation plan. After the staff assigned to your application approves the terms of the plan, do the following:
  3. Before your rezoning or development permit is issued, provide the notarized declaration and copies of your communications with renters.

3

Carry out your tenant relocation plan and report on its outcomes

Best practices

  •  Start early to help renters relocate.
  •  If possible, work with renters to stagger move-out dates so it’s easier to find alternate places to rent.
  •  Check for vacancies in your other buildings when finding alternate places to rent.
  •  Check if renters are eligible for housing assistance programs that can help them pay for their new rents.
  •  Compensate renters as they move out, even if they move out before your issue a formal notice to end tenancy. 
  •  Log your renters' contact information in case we ask you to follow up with them after they move out.
  •  Only issue a formal notice to end tenancy after all your permits are issued.
  1. Provide us with a final tenant relocation report that documents the result of your tenant relocation process. The report is a condition for you to receive your occupancy permit at the end of your redevelopment or renovation. In your report, summarize:
    • The names of eligible renters covered by your tenant relocation plan (the same names from your tenant relocation application)
    • The total monetary value of compensation and assistance provided to each renter
    • The outcome of your search for 3 places to rent for renters who asked for help
    • The starting discounted rents you offered to renters who asked for a replacement unit in your redeveloped building, where applicable
    • The situation for any renters still renting when your development permit was issued, including copies of related communication with renters

    View a final tenant relocation report template Word document (31 KB)

  2. If we ask you, provide copies of your communication with renters.

Questions?

Contact your rezoning or development planner.