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Common Questions

My landlord hasn’t carried out repairs. Can I stop paying rent?

Last reviewed in February 2023 by the Clicklaw Editors

No. You must still pay your rent or you could get evicted. However, if the repair is not for damages done by you (or your guests or pests) the landlord is generally responsible for it. If writing to your landlord does not cause them to make the necessary repairs, you have the right to take legal action through the Residential Tenancy Branch.

Good starting points include:

  • The Tenant Survival Guide, from TRAC, includes a chapter on "Repair and Services".
  • Renting it Right, from TRAC, is an online course that covers repairs and maintenance of rental units in a section called "Repairs and Services".
  • During a Tenancy, from the provincial government, has a section on repairs and maintenance.
  • LSLAP Manual: Landlord and Tenant Law, from the UBC Law Students Legal Advice Program, provides a section on "Repair and Service" which includes "Withholding Rent".
  • A Playbook for Tenants, from People’s Law School, can help you learn more about the responsibilities of both tenants and landlords. In this guide, you will also find information about dispute resolution.
  • Residential Tenancy, from Dial-a-Law, has a section called “What if a Landlord Won’t Make a Needed Repair?”

Need more help?

  • Tenant Info Line, by TRAC, provides information, referrals and help for tenants dealing with residential tenancy law matters.

See our related common questions:

repairs, tenants' rights, landlords, paying rent, landlord-tenant disputes, Residential Tenancy Branch