LANDLORDS HAVE TOO LITTLE PROTECTION UNDER ALBERTA’S LAWS
Uber drivers even rate us. That’s probably the closest parallel.
Try being rude to an Uber driver or fouling up the backseat of his or her car, then see what price the app quotes you to be picked up outside a bar at closing time.
I’ve spoken with several Uber drivers who admit they have a cutoff. If enough other drivers rate a passenger low, they won’t agree on the app to give that passenger a ride. (If your rating falls below 4.0, expect to wait a long time for a car.)
Ride-share companies such as Uber and Lyft have admitted in media interviews that any app user rated below 3.0 is unlikely ever to find a ride.
You can, like blacklisted renters in Edmonton, claim such ratings-based service is unfair because those doing the ratings can be subjective, arbitrary and unappealable. And there is some validity to that.
But the general rule for service businesses, professionals and frequent customers is: If your business, firm, clinic or level of personal service relies on online ratings, try hard not to be a jerk.
I suppose, having a place to live is more essential than most of these other activities. But why should people with a history of unpaid rent or property damage be foisted on another unsuspecting landlord down the line?
And the black marks against tenants could follow them around, even after they’ve resolved the problems – unemployment, addictions, crumbling relationships – that made them undesirable in the first place.
But just as there are unfair, jerk landlords, not all tenants are angels, either. Not all of them are reliable payers or trustworthy about having unauthorized roommates. Some are rowdy partiers who tear up their units.
But the little landlords who have their life savings or retirement nest egg tied up in one or two properties, they already have too little protection under Alberta’s laws.
Story by: Edmonton Sun