I’ve only ever taken the one course on law, so I’m no legal eagle, but I’ve recently run afoul of some rental condition which I thought I’d been exempted from. I have a portable dishwasher which I’ve been using without any issues in the last few places I’ve rented. This place, in the heart of Vancouver, had a clause against it and I discussed it with the landlord before signing the lease, which resulted in the amendment below, placed below the requisite clause in the Tenancy Agreement
Liquid-filled items. Under no circumstances will the use of portable washing machines, dishwashers, or waterbeds be allowed. The tenant shall not bring on the premises or the Residential Property any furniture, aquariums or other chattels which can be considered to be liquid-filled without the Landlord's prior written consent. The Landlord's approval of the use of any such item may be subject to the Tenant providing the landlord with written evidence that the Tenant has in place adequate liability insurance. Any damages and subsequent costs arising from the unauthorized use of such items will be the sole responsibility of the Tenant. Any emergency restoration and repairs required will be dispatched by the Landlord at his discretion and completed to his satsifaction.
Addendum: 1 portable dishwasher ok; Tenant responsible for any incidental damages. [ Initialed by landlord and me ]
That is the agreement that we both signed in August 2011. I did not have any sort of personal liability insurance, renter’s or otherwise and informed the landlord about it. He didn’t press the issue and we went ahead and signed the agreement.
Now, in January 2012, I am being asked to produce proof of personal liability insurance or discard the dishwasher. It seems that building management has changed their mind with regards to the dishwasher. It seems as though the crux of the matter lies in the words “may be subject to”, which imply that the landlord reserves the right to make me produce proof of liability insurance at any moment during the lease.
I guess I can take the path of least resistance and just get the damn insurance and be done with it, but it’d be nice to know if this kind of about-face is legitimate, warranted or just simply ubiquitous.