In this past October, many Canadians were pleased to finally have marijuana legalized. However, it came with great responsibility. Landlords and tenants must work together to ensure a harmonious living arrangement, and this includes following the various acts that have come into play. Courtesy of Susan Macarz, here are the rules and regulations tenants and landlords must follow regarding cannabis:
THE CANNABIS ACT
- The legal age for possession of marijuana in Ontario is 18 years and older.
- Individuals in this age range may possess and share—with adults who fall within the age range—up to 30 grams of marijuana.
- The marijuana can be dried or non-dried.
- Adults of 18 years or older may also purchase dried or fresh cannabis, as well as cannabis oil, available at a provincially-licensed retailer.
Within the Residence
If you have your own home, there are fewer complications.
For instance, adults that are 18 years or older can grow up to four cannabis plants from licensed seeds or seedlings. It’s important to remember that a maximum of four cannabis plants are allowed to be grown within a single residence by the people who live there; this limit relates to recreational use of the plants. If the plants are needed for medical purposes, a residence may have six or more. The number of plants does not depend on how many people reside in a residence, if there are children present, or whether the residence is owner-occupied, a rental, or any other type of residence.
Edible products—as well as concentrates—are not legal for sale right now. They intend to become legal in October 2019, however, tenants are allowed to make edible and drinkable cannabis products in their home. The only restriction on this is that the organic solvents cannot be used to make concentrated products.
THE RESIDENTIAL TENANCIES ACT IN ONTARIO
Landlords have a tougher situation to deal with now that marijuana is legal. The Residential Tenancies Act (RTA) provides some guidance as to what landlords can do and how they can handle complaints.
Before marijuana was legalized, tenants and their guests who possessed or used marijuana must have had a medical marijuana license. If they didn’t, they were committing an illegal act that provided a sufficient basis for a landlord to terminate their residency.
Now, however, landlords can only use Section 61 to end a tenant’s residency if a marijuana user is underaged, for example.
If a tenant is substantially interfering with the reasonable enjoyment of other tenants or the landlord, this is cause to terminate their tenancy. The problem with this section is that substantial interference is a vague term. The Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) must investigate to determine whether an allegation consists of substantial interference. Even if multiple complaints have been brought against a tenant, the LTB may still choose to not end the tenancy.
Despite the legalization of marijuana, landlords and tenants are still obliged to prevent safety risks. This includes:
- Fire (such as grow lamps overloading electrical circuits)
- Building damages (such as elevated humidity levels)
- Interference (such as complaints from other tenants)
If there are issues, tenants are to speak with their landlord, and landlords may turn to the LTB to work out a solution for marijuana-related issues.
Buying and Selling Your House or Apartment
Many condos passed new by-laws and amended their Condo Declaration to prohibit smoking altogether. With Susan Macarz as your Real Estate Broker, she will help you find a residence that meets your needs, whether it’s Downtown or Uptown. Toronto is a large city of opportunity, so don’t search alone and contact Susan today!