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I know this is a bit of a strange question.

I have a fixed term tenancy agreement and the lease is not up yet. However, the landlady really doesn't like me and has made it very unpleasant for me to live in the home. (for example, the landlady lives in the same building and has barking dogs who she won't do anything about even though I've told her they disrupt my sleep and work). The landlady has asked me to move out early, and of course I want to because it's been so unpleasant.

I was thinking of signing a "Mutual Agreement to End Tenancy Early" but I really don't think this is right as I am being pressured into moving out. I already have decided I will be filing a claim against her for loss of quiet enjoyment due to dogs barking, and was wondering if I could make the evidence strong that she broke the lease by forcing me out early? I could just not sign any agreement, but then it may look like I broke the lease (though I would still have emails about her pestering me to move out). Is there any better fit from the Tenancy Act on how to end tenancy in this situation?

From here:

How a tenancy ends

44 (1) A tenancy ends only if one or more of the following applies:

(a) the tenant or landlord gives notice to end the tenancy in accordance with one of the following:

(i) section 45 [tenant's notice];

(i.1) section 45.1 [tenant's notice: family violence or long-term care];

(ii) section 46 [landlord's notice: non-payment of rent];

(iii) section 47 [landlord's notice: cause];

(iv) section 48 [landlord's notice: end of employment];

(v) section 49 [landlord's notice: landlord's use of property];

(vi) section 49.1 [landlord's notice: tenant ceases to qualify];

(vii) section 50 [tenant may end tenancy early];

(b) the tenancy agreement is a fixed term tenancy agreement that, in circumstances prescribed under section 97 (2) (a.1), requires the tenant to vacate the rental unit at the end of the term;

(c) the landlord and tenant agree in writing to end the tenancy;

(d) the tenant vacates or abandons the rental unit;

(e) the tenancy agreement is frustrated;

(f) the director orders that the tenancy is ended;

(g) the tenancy agreement is a sublease agreement.

I know I am within my rights to stay, but considering how unpleasant it is (with things like dogs barking) I want to move first and then be compensated for damages latter. The only reason the landlord gave me to move out is because she doesn't want "a man" living in the home.

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I will be filing a claim against her for loss of quiet enjoyment due to dogs barking, and was wondering if I could make the evidence strong that she broke the lease by forcing me out early?

Consider arguing that the conditions you describe contravene section 32(1) (or some non-repair, equivalent provision) to the extent that the barking tends to hinder health conditions and/or makes it unsuitable for occupation by a tenant. Other than recordings at various times, I am unsure what evidence you would need to submit for your claims to prevail.

I could just not sign any agreement, but then it may look like I broke the lease

No. Your refusal to stipulate to an early tenancy does not put you in breach of contract. The description you provide indicates that the landlady fails every condition listed in Section 44 that would otherwise entitle her to terminate the lease early.

The only reason the landlady gave me to move out is because she doesn't want "a man" living in the home.

That would any fail judicial or quasi-judicial scrutiny. The landlady knew or should have known from the start that she was leasing the unit to a male. A subsequent, mere change of mind does not entitle a party to breach the contract.

I want to move first and then be compensated for damages latter

You will need to figure out whether BC law recognizes claims of constructive breach of contract. If it does not, your agreement for an early termination might preclude you from subsequent --that is, post-contract-- compensation.

  • Thanks for the reply. I'm having trouble interpreting "Your refusal to stipulate to an early tenancy does not put you in breach of contract." are you saying I should, or should not sign the Mutual Agreement to End Tenancy Early? – refbobby Sep 29 '18 at 4:00
  • @refbobby If I were in your position, I would not sign the Mutual Agreement. Signing it may be tantamount to knowingly and willfully waiving your possible claims, including that of constructive breach. That would significantly heighten your burden of proof because then you would have to prove that you signed the Agreement under duress or hardship. By contrast, the landlady's pestering emails (with no Mutual Agreement signed) will serve you to defeat any claims of breach of contract should she might pursue. – Iñaki Viggers Sep 29 '18 at 10:23

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