KW4RENT Unprofessional Illegal Break-in and Lock Change Fiasco
I'll write the (even still long) tl;dr before I begin, because I've documented a very long and detailed set of notes for this incident in the case anything happens. The goal of this rant is to really warn people living in KW4Rent property so they can try to avoid this shit happening to them in the future. Next term, I'm literally terrified to live with KW4Rent now because at any moment, without warning, I could lose access to my room for up to 2 days or even more. I don't think I'm going to rent with KW4Rent anymore when my lease expires because of this incident.
My sublet got locked out of his room, and we called KW4Rent and their asset management company, Asset Maintenance Pros (AMP). They ended up saying that we got locked out because they didn't get our rent, which I've been routinely paying every single month. My e-transfers were withdrawn by KW4Rent as noted on my bank statements. Regardless, it's still illegal to lock someone out because of non-payment of rent under the Residential Tenancies Act
After we claimed that we did pay our Rent, they double checked their system and said it was an administrative error on their part. We got no warnings or messages stating that they didn't get our Rent. They went straight to locking us out and didn't even bother to double check their system to see if it went through or not.
After a while we reach the in-building security guard. He says I need to be present to unlock the door for us. I refuse, saying I have work tomorrow and it's 11 PM and I'm in Toronto. I instead give him a picture of my drivers license as proof of ID. He starts to work on resetting the lock and I start questioning him to ask him why we were illegally locked out on the first place. I ask him who was responsible for this. I ask him whether or not he knows it's illegal and wrong to lock people out without any warning (which, I'm sure, a security guard hired by a rental company should know). All questions were met with evasive answers. He gets angry at me, and literally says word for word “ok buddy, I’m not fixing it for you. You’re giving me a hard time.” He puts his phone on voicemail and leaves the building. Turns out he DID fix it anyways, as my friend who was living there checked after the guard left. So I go to sleep thinking everything is good.
Next morning, the guard comes back, illegally enters our room without warning, and proceeds to lock my sublet out again because he was angry at me. I mean, this is something a 12 year old would do out of anger, NOT a licensed security guard that's supposed to rationally deal with the pressure, stress, and conflict that security guards are normally expected to face. He quickly runs out after my friend and another person see him.
So I call KW4Rent as well as AMP again, and I'm given a bunch of conflicting information for the whole afternoon including why the door was locked in the first place (see notes below) and who can unlock it, until I threaten to call non-emergency WRPS. Of course, the moment they hear WRPS, suddenly they're now able to unlock my door without any issue.
Followups to them to inquire about what happened in the first place have been ignored or responded with vague answers (ex. we held a meeting and talked to the guard), and I'm honestly angry and terrified now that a random guard can lock people out on an emotional whim. My sublet had exams coming up. If this happened a week later, it would have been devastating because he could have been locked out of his study material or his school supplies during exams. We still don't know why we were locked out in the first place.
Anyways, that's just the slightly short to-the-point version. Here's the list of detailed notes I made about the events, in case anyone is interested in reading. Apparently AMP also has notes on my file, but refuse to give them to me. I sent them my notes and asked them to verify, and got no response from them.
The whole incident duration from Lockout to finally being able to get back in was 1.5 days.
Detailed Notes on the KW4Rent Lockout Incident on Lester Street (exact location has been left out for reasons of anonymity to people in the suite):
Sunday, July 23, 2017, Early Evening:
• Sublet indicates to me that he is locked out of his room, but states that he won’t be back until Monday. His friend could not enter the room to pick up some school supplies.
• At first, we suspected a mechanical issue.
• After correspondence with KW4Rent and Asset Maintenance Pros, we were given information that the company had allegedly changed our lock codes due to nonpayment of rent.
• We did not get any warnings or reminders of this prior to them locking us out.
• However, we indicate that rent was paid and received on time. After checking, Rental Company then stated that it may have been an administrative error on their end.
• Indeed, after attempting to login the tenant portal, it indicated that my account was blocked due to nonpayment of rent.
Sunday, July 23, 2017, ~11:30 PM:
• After confirming that the lockout was due to an administrative error, we manage to contact the security guard operating in the building at the time.
• The security guard agrees to unlock the door on grounds that I am present.
• I refuse, stating that I have work tomorrow at 9:00 AM and I am in Toronto.
• We agree that I provide proof of my identification via Driver’s License.
• The security guard begins to reset the door code. I begin to ask why the door was locked in the first place. The guard provides an evasive answer, citing that he doesn’t have knowledge.
• I begin to question whether the guard knows it’s wrong and illegal to lock a tenant out without an eviction order, under the Residential Tenancies Act
• Security guard becomes frustrated, and tells me verbatim “ok buddy, I’m not fixing it for you. You’re giving me a hard time.”
• Security guard hangs up, puts phone on voicemail, and leaves the unit.
July 24, 2017, ~12:00 AM:
• I ask my friend (who is also living in the unit) to check the lock to see if it’s working.
• She states that the previous code we used is now working.
• We assume that the issue was solved (even though the security guard said he wouldn’t do it).
• We assume that the security guard already completed the task by the time he became frustrated.
July 24, 2017, Morning:
• My friend and 1-2 other persons in the unit witness the same security guard entering our unit without notice.
• The same security guard begins to work on my lock.
• The security guard leaves in a hurried fashion afterwards.
• The lock does not work again. My sublet is now again locked out.
• We assume that, out of unprofessional anger and malice, the security guard intentionally came back and locked us out.
July 24, 2017, Afternoon:
• After calling, KW4Rent indicates to us that the initial lockout may have been to other reasons.
• They indicate that we may have been locked out due to a tour and that the code on my door did not match the code in their system, so the tour guide changed the lock.
• We received no notice of lock change due to tour from KW4Rent.
July 24, 2017, Early Evening:
• I finally reach a property manager. I threated to call Waterloo Regional Police Services, non-emergency, due to lockout.
• 30 minutes later, property manager fixes out lock and documents the situation.
July 25, 2017:
• Property manager apologizes to me and states that the security guard will be spoken to. They state that they will get back to me on this next week.
• My sublet and I are now afraid that we may get randomly locked out. Getting locked out for even hours is especially critical, as students are now entering exam period.
August 2, 2017:
• After receiving no response for a week, I call KW4Rent again. KW4Rent states that the lock could have been broken due to mechanical error.
• We now have been given 3 contradicting possibilities. We still do not know which one is true.
August 4, 2017:
• I spoke to the property manager and requested the notes of the incident to be emailed to me. I also sent an e-mail asking for the notes.
• He said to call back Tuesday and ask the manager in charge of my building.
August 5, 2017
• My request for the notes via e-mail was denied on grounds that the information is for internal uses only.
• I respond by e-mailing them an earlier version of these notes, asking them to confirm the accuracy of these notes on the incident.
August 8, 2017
• My request for the notes via phone was denied. The property manager was not there at the time.
• My email that forwarded these notes to KW4Rent and AMP still has not received a response.