Property standards, related by-laws in Oakville strengthened with new rules

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Published June 30, 2023 at 10:20 am

The Town of Oakville has updated property standards, lot maintenance and division fence regulations in Oakville, including removing a dead tree, or part of a tree that is dead, decayed or damaged, that may be hazardous to persons or property. PEXELS PHOTO

Keeping tenants warm in a rental home during the colder months or ensuring your lights aren’t beaming into your neighbour’s home are just two of the new rules Oakville has installed to strengthen its property standards and related by-laws.

With the help of public feedback, the Town has updated its property standards, lot maintenance and division fence regulations in Oakville.

Both the Property Standards By-law 2023-074 and the Division Fence By-law 2023-076 are effective immediately, while the Lot Maintenance By-Law 2023-075 will come into effect on July 10, 2023.

In an effort to promote the “health, safety, comfort, convenience and general welfare of residents” in Oakville, the town ensures that property standards and lot maintenance by-laws set minimum standards for the upkeep of buildings, yards and properties.

The division fence by-law regulates how the cost of fences located along the property line should be split between adjoining property owners.

Here are some of new rules the town has installed that will require property owners to:

  • provide heat of at least 20 degrees Celsius for tenants in rental homes from Sept. 1 to June 15 unless the thermostat can be controlled by the tenant in the rental unit.
  • ensure their outdoor lighting is not aimed or located in a way that shines light directly into the interior of neighbouring properties regardless of whether the properties have shades, drapes or other interior window coverings.
  • remove a dead tree, or part of a tree that is dead, decayed or damaged, that may be hazardous to persons or property.
  • maintain grass, weeds, and vegetation on adjoining boulevard(s) so they do not grow higher than 20 cm.
  • keep adjoining boulevard(s) free and clear of waste.
  • keep naturalized areas to backyards areas. The naturalized area should only cover up to a maximum of 25 per cent of the backyard space.
  • keep their property free of kite fighting string (sharp nylon or synthetic strings coated with powdered glass).

The Town of Oakville has also added specific language requiring all openings in vacant buildings to be closed and secured from unauthorized entry by using wood sheathing, metal sheathing or brick or concrete block.

The definition of “waste” has been broadened to include excess accumulation of unused or unusable material.

Updates have also been made to the division fence by-law to better outline what the basic costs are that property owners should share. That includes the value of materials used for constructing, reconstructing, or repairing a fence and the applicable taxes, when the by-law applies and who is responsible for the cost of repairs when the fence is damaged.

MES officers from the town will ensure that property owners comply with the rules and related by-laws

For those residents who don’t, progressive enforcement measures can be used.

Fines between $300 and $500 can be issued for those violating the lot maintenance by-law (beginning June 10), while those violating the property standards by-law will face fines between $500 and $1,000.

The town will also be able to issue a court summons for more serious offences and repeat offenders.

For a full list of what the Town of Oakville has updated, visit here.

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