3. Get your evidence

You might not agree with your landlord that you caused the damage or that the damage is as bad as they say. If so, at the hearing, you must give evidence to show the Board member your side.

For example, your landlord might want you to pay for “damage” that is actually just from regular use. For example, scuff marks on the flooring that were caused by walking around, or peeling paint. Or you may say that the problem is not as bad or not as expensive to fix as your landlord claims.

Maybe the damage was already there when you moved into your place.

Get an estimate

If you think the landlord is asking for too much money to repair damage, you can get your own estimate. You can call a contractor and ask them to put in writing how much it might cost to fix the damage. Bring 3 copies of the estimate to your hearing for evidence.

Take pictures

If you think the damage is not as bad as the landlord says it is, you can take pictures to show the Board. Bring 3 copies of the pictures to your hearing for evidence.

Hearsay (“second-hand”) evidence

Often, the landlord’s case is based on evidence from people who are not at the hearing. You can ask the Board member not to give much importance to that evidence because it is “hearsay”.

Hearsay means a witness is repeating what someone else told them, not what the witness actually saw or heard. It is like “second-hand” evidence. For example, the landlord might say that another tenant saw you causing the damage, but that other tenant is not at the hearing.

The Board can allow hearsay evidence, but you can argue that they should not you based on hearsay. This is because stories can change when they are repeated by someone else. And, it is not fair that you don’t get the chance to question the person to show that what they are saying might be mistaken or untrue.

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