Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update
March 27, 2020
Thank you for your patience as we navigate this unprecedent situation. We understand that the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis has been disruptive and has left many facing uncertain situations. We want to assure you the health and safety of our tenants and employees remain our top priority. Due to this, we want to remind you that we are here to work with you and continue to provide safe and secure rental housing, despite the challenges ahead.
On March 25, 2020, the Provincial Government announced a robust program designed to assist tenants who may need help to pay their rent. This program was designed with specific individuals in mind – renters who have faced loss of employment due to the COVID-19 crisis. A $500 rental subsidy, administered by BC Housing, is available to tenants who have needed to apply for Employment Insurance or the Federal Governments Emergency Care Fund as a result of the ongoing pandemic. This $500 subsidy is available in addition to increased GST rebates, increased provincial childcare benefits, standard EI benefits and up to $900 bi-weekly for 15 weeks that can be accessed by those who are quarantined or sick with COVID-19, taking care of a sick family member with COVID-19, and/or parents who must stay home to care for children due to school and daycare closures. These programs add up to $3,000 a month that is available to help tenants through this time.
You, the tenant, must apply for the rental benefit. If you feel you may fall short on rent due to the impacts of COVID-19, please reach out to us (in confidence) and we can arrange a rent deferral payment plan to help support your rent payments for the short term. This is a time when everyone needs to be working together – landlords and tenants included.
In addition, we continue to instruct our building managers and maintenance staff to take extra steps to sanitize high-touch surfaces, including door handles, railings etc. in common areas. Also, as a safety precaution, we will no longer be entering units for routine inspections, however, will require access in the case of emergency, such as a fire or flood.
Finally, Devon Properties has rescinded all rent increases effective April 1, 2020. Please pay your rent based on your March 1, 2020 rent amount. All future rent increases have been placed on hold until further notice. If you pay using pre-authorized debit, these amounts have proactively been adjusted.
The Federal Government has also announced several measures that may be of help to you during this crisis. This includes:
- An emergency care benefit for people who are self-employed.
- Deferral of Income Tax owing until August 2020.
- An expanded criteria for Employment Insurance eligibility.
At Devon Properties we value our residents. We take pride in the fact you have chosen to make this building your home. We commit to working with residents who have issues regarding payment of rent that go beyond these government programs. If you need this further help please reach out to your Property Manager.
Devon Properties Ltd.
COVID-19 Notice to all Residents
March 16, 2020
The safety of our residents and employees is Devon Properties’s top priority. We are closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation and are taking action based on guidance from
public health officials. In order to address our broad concerns and maintain a safe living environment for all residents, as well as a safe work environment for our employees, we have taken measures including:
- Enhanced cleaning protocols. We have increased the frequency of cleaning service at our properties under management (e.g., high traffic areas such as lobbies, elevators and laundry rooms with disinfecting products).
- Additional antibacterial products. We have increased the quantity of sanitizers and disinfectant wipes available for our building managers and employees throughout our various properties.
- Prevention steps. We have communicated the latest prevention steps from public health experts to all residents, building managers and employees, along with increased building signage, encouraging vigilance and to take necessary precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
- Building maintenance protocols. We have determined only essential insuite work orders will be completed at this time, and all “elective” or “proactive” insuite or general building projects will be placed on a temporary hold, until further notice.
- Closure of all amenities and quiet rooms. We have directed our property managers to close all amenity common areas and rooms such as: lounges, pools, changerooms, fitness centres, yoga rooms, games rooms and similar types of rooms. Laundry rooms will remain open with the extra cleaning precautions in place.
- Elevator Protocol. Keeping with the importance of social distancing, we have requested that elevator usage be limited to: 1 INDIVIDUAL OR HOUSEHOLD AT ONE TIME. Thank you for respecting the current measures in place to protect yourself and other residents.
- Laundry Room Protocol. We care deeply about the health and safety of our apartment residents and are doing our best to regularly clean and disinfect frequently-touched surfaces – including the laundry room.The increased cleaning efforts will allow all residents continued access to the laundry room facilities in a safe and efficient manner. Please do your best to sanitize your laundry station after use, and remember to continue practicing social distancing while completing your laundry.
- Safe leasing protocols. In an effort to reduce exposure to COVID-19, we have required all building managers and leasing professionals to suspend showing occupied suites as part of the leasing process. Upon vacancy of a suite, it will be professionally cleaned using enhanced cleaning protocols and made available for in-person showings.
- Safe rent collection procedures. Out of an abundance of caution for all parties involved, we will no longer accept cash or cheque payment directly to our building managers or at the Devon office. As such, we have requested residents to take advantage of the various online and electronic payment options available.
- Devon office closure to the public. Effective end of day, Tuesday, March 17, 2020, Devon will be closing our office located at 100 – 990 Fort Street, Victoria, British Columbia to the public. This closure is a pro-active measure to ensure the health, safety and well-being of our broader community against the transmission of the COVID-19 virus. This is a precautionary measure only. Access into the office space has been revoked for all non-contingency employees.
Devon continues to operate and service over 150 multi-family and commercial real estate properties throughout Greater Victoria, Vancouver Island and the Okanagan. We will continue to respond to the latest on COVID‑19, with residents and employee safety top of mind. Please reach out if you require further information on our efforts and we will continue to provide updates as appropriate. For additional information about COVID-19, please visit the BC Centre for Disease Control website. As always, we will strive to create a safe and enjoyable rental experience for all residents.
Devon Properties Ltd.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Preparedness and Precautions
March 12, 2020
Upon confirmation of cases of coronavirus (“COVID-19”) in British Columbia, Devon Properties would like to share the following as per guidance received from Public Health Officials:
Everyone should remain vigilant and take necessary precautions to prevent the spread of COVID- 19, including the following:
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
- Throw all used tissues directly into a lined garbage bag.
- Cover your mouth and nose with the inside of your elbow when coughing or sneezing if you do not have a tissue.
- Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds often throughout the day, especially after you cough or sneeze, and also before preparing food or eating. Alcohol-based hand cleansers are also effective.
- Do not touch your eyes, nose, or mouth. Germs spread this way.
In a situation where you believe you have contracted COVID-19, please contact your local health care facility for assessment. You can call 8-1-1 anytime to talk to a nurse at HealthLinkBC and get advice about how you are feeling and what to do next.
All Devon residents are encouraged to visit the Public Health Officials’ websites frequently for the latest updates regarding official policies, protocols, and travel restrictions.
Your Rental Property
Your rental property will receive more frequent cleaning of high traffic areas such as lobbies, elevators and laundry rooms with disinfecting products. In addition, appropriate information and signage will be provided within common areas.
Regarding rent payments, if you have historically paid your monthly rent via cheque or cash, out of an abundance of caution for all parties involved, we will no longer accept payment directly to your building manager or at the Devon head office.
As such, we request those individuals take advantage of the following payment options: sign-up for pre-authorized payment; mail rent payment to Devon Properties Ltd. (100-990 Fort Street, Victoria, BC V8V 3K2); utilize our approved third party online rent payment platforms (RentMoola or for Starlight Investments residents: PropertyVista).
If you have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact your Building Manager.
Devon Properties Ltd.