Freeze! Don’t move - An expression many renters in Toronto want to hear! And Ontario’s new Fair Housing plan is listening!
As Toronto’s housing demand continues to rise, the city’s renters face many challenges, including skyrocketing rent prices, limited supply, and unlawful evictions.
Recent city wide reports indicate the average price for a one bedroom apartment in Toronto is over $2000 per month, which is an 11% increase year-over-year. It’s no surprise that many renters have little interest in moving; however, some landlords have taken illegal liberties to capitalize on high times.
As of September 2017, new policies are now in place protecting tenants from eviction and unexpected rental increases.
1. No-Fault Eviction Compensation
One of the most common use cases of no-fault eviction is when a family member (of the landlord) plans to move into the tenanted unit or property. In this situation, tenants who are on month-to-month leasing agreements can be evicted at no fault with 60 days notice. And because many landlords are looking to increase profits on owned rental properties, this family rule is being abused.
New rent control policies outline that any tenant being evicted for a landlord’s family member to take possession, must receive compensation of a minimum of one month’s rent or must be offered another comparable rental unit.
In addition, if a landlord advertises, re-rents (to non-family), demolishes or converts the apartment within one year of eviction, he or she could face a fine up to $25,000.
2. Rent Increase Caps
As you may know, the amount a landlord can increase a rent price is a percentage based on the Ontario Consumer Price Index. The percentage increase is capped at 2.5% annually. For 2018, the province announced a 1.8% rent increase cap.
These caps apply to the recently-passed Rental Fairness Act, 2017 which expands rental controls to all private rental units, which includes occupancy after November 1, 1991. Before April 20, 2017, units built before this time did not have to comply with the government’s annual percentage increases. This meant a landlord of a newer Toronto condo building could increase rent by X amount. For example, a tenant paying $2000 per month could be requested to pay an additional $200 a month after the first year of the lease with the appropriate 90 day notice. Now, because of this new act, all rentals regardless of date built must comply with the annual capped increases.
What does this mean for renters? If someone is paying Toronto’s average rent price for a one bedroom, $2000. The landlord is only allowed to increase the price by 1.8% for the year. \
2000 x 1.8% = 36
In 2018 the maximum increase is $36 for the year, making rent $2036.
The above changes were made in accordance with Ontario’s 16 change policies with the goal of improving and maintaining affordable housing across the province - one which proves Toronto renters a peace of mind.