The BC Financial Services Authority has issued its largest penalty to date against a Kamloops, B.C., woman who it says failed to comply with an order to stop unlicensed rental property management services.
The authority says Kathy Alaina Bakker provided unauthorized rental property management for 10 properties in the city between December 2019 and August 2022.
It says Bakker has been ordered to pay a $125,000 penalty and nearly $55,000 in investigation and hearing fees.
The agency says aggravating factors in its decision included that she continued to manage the properties after being notified of the investigation and “intentionally ignored” the order to stop.
Bakker, who has 30 days to appeal the decision, could not immediately be reached for comment.
The authority called it a “landmark penalty” that comes after legislation was updated to increase maximum penalties for misconduct to $250,000.
Raheel Humayun, director of investigations for the authority, says in a statement that the fine sends a “a clear message that failing to comply with an order and not co-operating with an investigation will not be tolerated.”
“Unlicensed persons and their unlawful participation in providing real estate services puts landlords and tenants at risk, particularly when it comes to protecting deposits or rent,” she said. “These risks are elevated in a competitive rental market, where unlicensed rental property managers may engage in unfair practices, and the recourse for impacted tenants is unfortunately limited.”