Frequently Asked Questions If you have a question, we have the answer…
Q: Can I break my lease?
A: All lease agreements are legal contracts that cannot be broken without the consent of both parties involved. Therefore, you cannot break your lease without first consulting WAM Properties and obtaining their approval. See Subletting/Reassigning for further details on ways to assign the responsibility of the lease to another party.
Q: How do I put a request in for repairs?
A: All requests for repairs must be submitted in writing. You can either submit your request using our online request form, or email your request to [email protected] or fax repairs in to 905-688-1582. Please indicate in as much detail as possible what the problem is and what kind of repairs are required. Your request will be addressed as soon as possible. If your situation is an emergency (leaks, flood, no heat/water/electricity, etc), please contact the office at 905-688-1586 for immediate attention. If your emergency is after regular office hours, please call 289-696-0469 0r 905-348-4028
Q: What do I do if there is a fire in my apartment?
A: Get out safely, call 911, and inform the WAM Properties office as soon as possible.
Q: I have an emergency repair that requires immediate attention. What do I do?
A: If your situation is an emergency (leaks, flood, no heat/water/electricity, etc), please contact the office at 905-688-1586 for immediate attention. after hours call 289-696-0469
Q: I’m interested in viewing one of WAM Properties available rental units – How do I set up an appointment?
A: Email is the preferred method for setting up appointments for showings. Email [email protected] and indicate which apartment(s) you are interested in seeing, and when you are available to see it. If you do not have access to email, you can call the office at 905-688-1586 or cell 905-371-6871 to set up your appointment.
Q: I gave WAM Properties my last month’s rent deposit to secure my apartment for me, but I no longer want to rent the apartment. How do I get my deposit back?
A: Your last month’s rent deposit is not refundable if you back out. When you submit your deposit, it is important that you are 100% sure that you would like to rent the apartment. The only case in which your deposit will be refunded is if your application is denied and/or someone else is given the apartment.
Q: Who do I make my rent cheques payable to?
A: In most cases, rent cheques should be made payable to WAM Property Management. However, there are a few exceptions – please refer to your lease agreement to verify who your cheques should be made out to. If you have misplaced your copy of the lease, contact the office at 905-688-1586.
Q: When is my rent due?
A: Unless you have made alternative arrangements with WAM Properties, your rent is due no later than the first day of every month. Late rent payments are subject to an administrative fee and/or legal action. In an attempt to avoid late rent payments, we recommend submitting 11 post-dated cheques at the time of your lease signing. Please note that cheques returned due to non-sufficient funds will be subject to a monetary penalty from WAM Properties in addition to the tenant’s bank fees.
Q: What methods of payment does WAM Properties accept for last month’s rent deposits?
A: Your last month rent deposit should be submitted in the form of a certified cheque or money order made payable to Wam Property Management. No cash or personal cheques will be accepted for the deposit.
Q: What methods of payment does WAM Properties accept for monthly rent payments?
A:For your convenience we can set you up for auto withdrawal (this is the preferred method of many of our tenants), email money transfer, or you can submit 11 post-dated cheques at the time of your lease signing. If you choose to do otherwise, payments must be received by the first of the month in the form of personal cheque(s), certified cheque(s), or money order(s). Please do not submit your rent payment in cash.
Q: I am going to be away for a few months ? Can I sublet my apartment?
A: Approval from WAM Properties is required before you are allowed to sublet your apartment for any period of time. You will be responsible for advertising your apartment and finding a suitable tenant to take your place during your absence. The new tenant will be required to submit a application to WAM Properties, but the original tenant will remain responsible for the apartment and the payment of rent (ie. The new tenant will pay rent to the original tenant, and the original tenant will continue to pay WAM Properties. Please make sure that you have submitted enough post-dated cheques to cover all rent payments during your absence). If you wish to sublet for the remainder of your lease, you have two options: sublet or reassignment. In the case of subletting, all of the previously mentioned policies apply. If you choose to reassign your apartment, you will still be required to find new tenants to replace you. The new tenants will be required to submit an application, sign a new lease, and submit a first and last month’s rent deposit. Once this process is complete and the new tenants have been approved, your lease will become void and your last month’s rent deposit will be returned to you. If any of the above conditions are not met, you will remain legally bound to your lease and your deposit may not be returned to you. Please note that a $75 fee applies to all lease reassignments.
Q: Am I allowed to have pets?
A: Under the Residential Tenancies Act, you are allowed to have pets. However, some of our property owners prefer that their apartments remain pet-free. If you do own a pet, please make WAM Properties aware of this in your application. Please take responsibility of your pet, and be sure to clean up after it (both indoors and outdoors!). If any damages are caused as a result of your pet, you will be held financially responsible for any required repairs. A tenant can be evicted for having a pet in their unit only if: ? the pet is making too much noise, damaging the unit, or causing an allergic reaction, or ? the animal or species is considered to be inherently dangerous. Even if the tenancy agreement has a ‘no pets’ rule in it, the tenant cannot be evicted just for having a pet unless the Board decides in an order that the pet is causing a problem, or that the pet is inherently dangerous.
Q: Are paying utilities my responsibility or the landlord’s?
A: You will be made aware of any extra utility costs that will be required from you at the time of your lease signing. This information will also be included in your lease agreement.
Q: Who do I call to set up hydro/cable/internet/etc.?
A: – Hydro One ( Thorold ) – 1-88-664-9376 (www.hydroone.com) – Horizon Utilities ( St. Catharines ) 905-522-6611 Niagara Peninsula Energy 905-356-2681 – Welland Hydro 905-732-1381 Welland water 905-735-1700 St Catharines water 905-688-5681 ext 1427 – Rogers (Cable, Home Phone, Internet): 1-888-ROGERS1 (www.rogers.ca) – Bell (Home Phone, Internet): 613-310-BELL (www.bell.ca) – Enbridge 1-877-362-7434
Q: Where is WAM Property Management Office located?
A: WAM Properties office is located at 112 Queenston St, Suite 303 , St. Catharines, Ont. Appointments must be made in advance. Walk-ins are not permitted.
Q: My lease is/will be over and I am moving out. What do I have to do?
A: An official move-out letter will be mailed to you approximately 4 weeks prior to the termination of your lease, and will include detailed instructions on your responsibilities. You will be required to clean your apartment and leave it in good condition for the next tenants. Please remove all furniture, garbage, and personal belongings. We also ask that you leave your keys in the apartment on the kitchen counter and leave the door unlocked. This will allow the new tenants easy access to the apartment on move-in day. Your apartment will be inspected before you move out.
Q: I’ve locked myself out of my apartment ? What do I do?
A: If you have roommates, please try to get in touch with them to let you in. If you cannot reach them, and it is during office hours (Monday to Friday, 10am – 6pm), you can call the office at 905-688-1586 and someone will meet you at your apartment to let you in. In this case, you will be required to pay a $50 fee. If you have locked yourself out of your apartment after office hours, you will be required to call a locksmith to get back into your apartment and pay all associated costs (may range from $60-$100).
Q: I’ve lost my keys?How do I get a new set?
A: If you have roommates, make arrangements to make a copy of their set. You will be responsible for all associated costs. If you do not have a roommate and have lost your keys, you can call the office during regular business hours (Monday to Friday, 10am to 6pm) and WAM Properties will provide you with a new set of keys within 24 hours at a cost of $50.
Q: How do I get a rent receipt?
A: Please note that rent receipts are not provided to tenants automatically ? they must be requested. Email the office ([email protected] ) to request a rent receipt, and be sure to include your name, phone number, mailing address, the months and year that you are requesting a rent receipt for, the rental unit address, the monthly rent that you paid. This information will be verified with our records and your rent receipt will be prepared and mailed to you as soon as possible.
Q: Am I allowed to paint my apartment?
A: You are not allowed to paint your apartment without the permission of WAM Property Management. Painting without permission is a violation of your lease agreement and is subject to legal action. If you would like to paint your apartment, please email a request to [email protected] and you will be notified with a response. If your request is approved, you will be required to paint your apartment back to its original colours prior to moving out.
Q: Where do I get an application for tenancy? What do I do with it after I fill it out?
A: The application for tenancy form is available at the office or online. The application can also be faxed to you by request or electronic version of the application is available for download off of the website. Once you have completed your application, please submit it by email, fax, or drop it off at the office. Applications are processed on a first-come, first-served basis, so please submit it, along with your deposit, as soon as possible to secure the apartment that you are interested in
Q: Will I need a co-signer for my lease?
A: If you are under the age of 21 and are unemployed, WAM Properties may request that you have a co-signer (ie. Parent or guardian) to complete the leasing process. You will be advised of this following the submission of your rental application.
Q: How long is the lease term?
A: Unless an alternative agreement has been reached between the tenant(s) and WAM Properties, all lease agreements are for a period of 12 months.
Q: When is garbage/recycling day for me?
A: Garbage and recycling pick-up day varies depending on your location within the city. Please consult the City website to find out when you should have your garbage and/or recycling at the curb. Some of the larger properties have garbage and recycling receptacles available at your convenience.
Q: I submitted a last month’s rent deposit with my application, but my application wasn’t approved and/or someone else got the apartment. Will I get my deposit back?
A: Yes. You are legally entitled to a full refund of your last month’s deposit under these circumstances.
Q: Damage (ie. Hole in the wall, broken window, etc.) has been done in my apartment. Do I have to pay for it?
A: Yes. As outlined in your lease agreement, you will be held financially accountable for any damages that occur in your apartment. Periodic inspections may be held throughout your tenancy to evaluate the condition of your rental unit.
Q: Do I have to submit post-date cheques?
A: You do not HAVE to submit post-dated cheques. However, we recommend (and prefer) that you do. This helps avoid late rent payments on the tenant’s behalf, and allows our accountant to process all outstanding rents in much more efficient manner. If you do not submit a series of post-dated cheques, you will still be responsible for making sure that your rent is paid by the first of every month, without exception.
Q: Does everybody that is going to be living in the apartment have to sign the lease?
A: We recommend that everyone that is going to be living in the apartment sign the lease, so that one person is not held legally accountable for a shared apartment. The responsibility should be divided equally among your roommates, particularly if you are all paying equal shares in rent.
Q: Who is responsible for maintaining the unit?
A: It is the landlord’s responsibility to maintain the unit and ensure that it is in a good state of repair, even if: -the tenant was aware of problems in the unit before they moved into it, or, -the landlord puts into the lease that the tenant is responsible for maintenance. However, the tenant is responsible for keeping the unit clean, up to the standard that most people consider ordinary or normal cleanliness. The tenant is also responsible for repairing or paying for any damage to the rental property caused by the tenant, their guests or another person living in the rental unit.
Q: Can I withhold rent because WAM Properties isn’t properly maintaining my building or unit?
A: WAM Properties has an excellent reputation for providing their tenants with fast and efficient repair services, so this should not be an issue. However, if you feel your maintenance needs are not being met, you are not allowed to withhold your rent payments in accordance with the RTA (Residential Tenancies Act). If a tenant withholds rent, WAM Properties can give the tenant a notice of termination for non-payment of rent and then file an application to evict the tenant. To ensure that this does not become an issue, it is important to submit your service/repair requests to the WAM Property Management office in writing as soon as possible.
Q: Who is responsible for snow removal?
A: It is WAM Properties responsibility to make sure that the residential complex is kept in a good state of repair, fit for habitation and to comply with any health, safety, housing and maintenance standards. Failure to clear the snow may be a breach of municipal safety, housing or maintenance standards. These standards generally set out that it is the owner’s responsibility to make sure that the property can be safely entered and exited. It is our responsibility to provide safe passage to and from the property.
Q: Can a WAM Properties employee enter my apartment?
A: The Residential Tenancies Act allows a landlord to enter a tenant’s unit only under specific circumstances. In most cases, the landlord must first give the tenant 24 hours written notice, stating when they will enter and for what reason. There are some exceptions, however, such as in the case of an emergency, if the tenant has given notice to vacate, or if the tenant agrees to allow the landlord to enter the unit.
Q: Can I refuse to let WAM Properties in if they want to enter my apartment?
A: Provided that WAM Properties has followed the procedures required by the Residential Tenancies Act, the tenant cannot refuse to let them in. If the tenant does not provide access, WAM Properties can give them a notice of termination claiming that the tenant is interfering with their lawful rights. A Member of the Landlord and Tenant Board could order the tenant’s eviction for this reason. Also, interfering with a landlord’s lawful right is an offence under the Act, and the tenant could be prosecuted.
Q: Can I change the locks?
A: A tenant cannot change the locks without WAM Properties permission. Also, the tenant cannot add locks that might stop a WAM Properties employee from entering the unit if there is an emergency or if there is a valid reason for entering the rental unit and the tenant has been given proper notice to enter. If the tenant does change the lock, a copy of the key should be given to the WAM Properties immediately.
Q: Can WAM Properties change the locks?
A: WAM Properties can change the locks while the tenant is living in the unit as long as they give the tenant a key for the new lock. Note: Once a tenant has been evicted from the unit, WAM Properties can change the locks, even if the tenant has left property in the unit. WAM Properties does not have to give the former tenant replacement keys in this case.
Q: How often can the rent be increased?
A: Rent for a new tenant cannot be increased until 12 months after the tenancy started. Then, WAM Properties is allowed to increase the rent once every 12 months.
Q: Does WAM Properties have to notify me if they are planning a rent increase?
A: Yes. WAM Properties must give a written notice of rent increase to the tenant at least 90 days before the day the rent increase is to start. The notice must tell the tenant how much the new rent will be and when to begin paying the new rent. If the tenant thinks that the new rent is too high and they do not want to pay it, this allows the tenant enough time to give WAM Properties proper notice of termination and move out before the rent increase begins.
Q: When is the rent considered late?
A: Rent is considered late if it is not paid by the day that it is due. For example, if the rent is due on the 1st of the month and it is not paid on that day, it is late.
Q: What are the possible consequences of late rent payment(s)?
A: If a tenant does not pay rent on the date that it is due, WAM Properties can give the tenant a Notice to End a Tenancy Early for Non-payment of Rent (Form N4). This notice gives a tenant who pays rent monthly 14 days to pay the rent due or to move out. If the rent is not paid, and the tenant does not move, WAM Properties can make an application to the Board for an order: -requiring the tenant to pay the rent that is owing, and -evicting the tenant if they do not make the entire payment by a specified deadline If a tenant is often late with the rent, WAM Properties may give a Notice to Terminate a Tenancy at the End of Term (Form N8) for persistently paying rent late. Daily or weekly tenants must be given 28 days notice and in all other cases, the tenant must be given 60 days notice. In this case, WAM Properties can apply to the Board for an order evicting the tenant right after giving the tenant the notice.
Q: How much notice does a tenant have to give if they want to move out?
A: When a tenant decides to move, they must provide WAM Properties with a written notice of termination. In most cases, this is a 60-day notice. The termination date must be the last day of their rental period or their lease, even if this is more than 60 days. 2 months notice to vacate does not apply during the lease. Also, if it is a monthly tenancy that begins on the first day of each month and the tenant gives WAM Properties notice on June 15th, the termination date would be August 31.
Q: What is the difference between assigning and subletting a unit?
A: “Assigning a unit” means that the tenant moves out of the unit permanently and transfers their tenancy to another person. All the terms of the original rental agreement stay the same? The amount of the rent and what services are included etc. “Subletting a unit” means that the tenant moves out of their unit for a specific period of time but the tenant plans to move back into the unit before the end of the tenancy. The person who moves in is known as a subtenant. They are responsible to pay the rent to the original tenant who then pays it to the landlord. WAM Properties will not refuse the idea of subletting the unit, but they can refuse to allow the tenant to sublet to a specific person if they have a good reason.
Q: What happens if a tenant assigns or sublets their unit without WAM Properties consent?
A: If a tenant assigns or sublets their unit without WAM Properties consent, it is an unauthorized assignment or sublet. WAM Properties can file an application with the Board to evict both the tenant and the unauthorized occupant.
Q: For what reasons can a tenant be evicted?
A: There are different reasons for evicting a tenant. For some reasons, a landlord can only evict a tenant at the end of the tenancy agreement (at the end of a lease). In most of these situations, the tenant has not done anything wrong, but the landlord needs the unit back. Other reasons allow a landlord to evict a tenant in the middle of their tenancy agreement or lease? These are generally situations where the tenant or someone the tenant let into their building has done something wrong. For example, the tenant has not paid their rent or has damaged the rental property. WAM Properties can evict you for the following grounds: Nonpayment of rent on the day it is due. WAM Properties can give you a Notice of Termination, but it can not take effect until the 14th day after the notice is given, (or only 7 days if you pay your rent on a daily or weekly basis). This notice must include the fact that this termination can be avoided by paying the amount due before the date it is to take effect. If you are a tenant in subsidized or public housing and provide false information on your income or the incomes of those living with you, or changes to those incomes as per Section 60; If you do illegal acts or allow someone to do illegal acts on the grounds or anywhere in the building. Section 61 says this is the case if you commit such act. It does not state that it is necessary for you or the other person(s) to have been found guilty in a criminal court, so if this follows the protocols of the previous law then it is likely it only has to be proven to the satisfaction of an adjudicator of the Landlord and Tenant Board; Section 62 on damage says if you, other residents of your unit or your guests willfully or negligently causes undue damage to your apartment, the building or property you can be evicted. The notice of termination of your lease must state how you can remedy the situation and thereby prevent the eviction; Section 63 may also apply; If you, other residents of your unit or your guest “substantially interferes” with the reasonable enjoyment of the building for other tenants as per Section 64 or in the case of a building with 3 units or less where the landlord also resides under Section 65; If you, other residents of your unit or your guest impair the safety of any person in the residential complex as per Section 66; If the number of persons occupying the rental unit on a continuing basis results in a contravention of health, safety or housing standards required by law, under Section 67, on overcrowding; Animals can be a reason for eviction if the Landlord and Tenant Board is convinced that the tenant is keeping an animal and that the animal(s) is substantially interfering with the reasonable enjoyment of the premises, causes allergic reactions, or is inherently dangerous to safety. There are other grounds for eviction, such as if the landlord personally needs the apartment to live in, if they are demolishing the building, converting the building (such as to a condominium) or doing such major repairs or renovations that they need your unit vacated.
Q: Can I be evicted for something that my roommate or a guest does?
A: Yes, a number of the reasons for eviction are based on problems caused by an occupant of the unit (someone that the tenant lets live with them), or a guest that the tenant lets into their building. So, for example, if a tenant’s guest punches a hole in the hallway wall, WAM Properties could give the tenant a notice of termination and, if the problem isn’t resolved, make an application to the Board to evict the tenant.
Q: Can I use WAM Properties as a reference for my next rental application?
A: Yes WAM Properties will be happy to provide you with a reference for your next rental application.
Q: Is apartment insurance included in my rent?
A: No. If you are interested in purchasing insurance for the protection of your apartment and your personal belongings, it is your responsibility to do so. does WAM Properties not cover any insurance costs, nor will they cover the costs of any damages as a result of fire, flood, break and enter, etc.
Q: What bus routes are close to my apartment?
A: Please refer to Niagarafalls.ca municipal website. In st catharines go to yourbus.com In welland go to welland.ca
Q: Have we answered everything?
A: If you have any questions that have not been answered on this website, please email the office at [email protected] and a WAM Properties representative will respond to your inquiry as soon as possible. For legal issues regarding Landlord-Tenant matters, please refer to the Landlord and Tenant Board website: www.ltb.gov.on.ca