Archive for the ‘Ontario Landlords’ Category

Ontario Landlords: Rent Increase Guideline 2014

Wednesday, December 25th, 2013

December 25th, 2013

Ontario landlords Rent Increase Guideline 2014

How Much Can Landlords in Ontario Raise the Rent in 2014?

If you are a landlord in Ontario you face what is called ‘rent control.’

This means in many cases how much you can charge for rent is controlled by the government.

As we wrote in June about how much Ontario landlords can increase the rent in 2014 the government announces a Rent Increase Guideline, usually in the early summer before the coming year.

This is the announcement from the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing informing Ontario landlords rent increases for the next calendar year.

We have had lots of landlords from all over the province asking us to clarify and confirm how much they can raise the rent in 2014 and here is your answer:

HOW MUCH CAN ONTARIO LANDLORDS RAISE THE RENT?

Ontario Landlords Can Raise the Rent 0.8% in 2014

That is the allowable increase according to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing for the province.

Is the Ontario Rent Increase Guideline Too Low?

Many landlords think it is.

After all, landlords still have not been allowed to catch up to the added costs for when the HST was implemented.

Is 0.8% a realistic example of the increased costs Ontario landlords face?

Whether you are a Toronto landlord, invest in Ottawa rentals or have properties in a smaller area and become a Newmarket landlord, many property investors and landlords say no.

Let’s look at some of the increasing costs for  landlords in our province:

1. How about the increased prices of your property taxes?

2. What about increase costs from the people we depend on to maintain our rental units?

3. Many small landlords are facing increases over 5% for services such as water.

I Need To Do Major Improvements on the Property Including a New Roof.

Is There A Way To Increase the Rent More Than 2.5%?

If you want to raise the rent more than the guideline you can apply for what is called an Above Guideline Increase through the Landlord and Tenant Board.

You can apply if the cost of your municipal taxes and charges or your utilities have increased more than the following formula: the rent increase guideline + 50%.

You can apply for increased costs due to capital expenditures or investing in security services.

Are All Residential Landlords Covered By The Rent Increase Guideline?

No, not all.

You do not have to follow the Guideline if your situation in one of the following:

1. The rental was not occupied for any purpose before June 17th, 1998

This means your rental property was built after June 17th, 1998 or you have built a new unit in your property that was never occupied before June 17th, 1998.

2. The rental unit was never previously rented since July 29th, 1975

This means only the owner has lived in the property since the date of July 29th, 1975.

3. No part of the building was occupied for residential purposes before Nov. 1st  1991

This means the property was converted from commercial to residential or was not built or occupied until after November 1st, 1991.

Ontario Landlords and the 2014 Rent Increase Guideline

 For more information see the Landlord and Tenant Board Website

To discuss this and other issues go to the Ontario Landlord Forum

Ontario Landlords 2014: Landlord Licensing in Windsor?

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

 December 20, 2013Ontario Landlords Association 2014 Landlord Licensing Windsor landlords

The new year is an important one for Ontario Landlords and we are upbeat.

Despite a very low Rent Increase Guideline of only 0.8% in 2014 more and more landlords are doing proper tenant screening and renting to all the good tenants out there (and avoiding the pro tenants who are out there and ready to prey on unsuspecting landlords).

There are still going to be challenges.

For example, we’ve received hundreds of emails from Windsor landlords concerned about landlord licensing.

The rumours all over the internet that landlords would require a license to operate in 2014 spread fast around the landlord and residential property investor community in October.

After all, Windsor landlords are looking forward to a positive and successful new year.

The vacancy rate keeps getting lower and more and more good tenants are choosing our city as their new home.

With proper tenant screening landlords all over the city can expect to find tenants who pay rent on time and are take care of the property they are renting.

The idea of landlords having to get license is upsetting because it’s the wrong type of policy for our city.

What Is Landlord Licensing?

This is a government policy that exists for Oshawa landlords and Waterloo landlords renting to students.

It means the government requires landlords to pay a fee and apply to get a license to be a residential landlord.

There are also annual inspections, new rules for how many rooms which can be in a rental unit and lots more. (In some cases it even requires small landlords to get a criminal check!)

Starting in January 2014 Mississauga landlords will need to get a license. The rules are strict and the fees are high. 

Earlier this year the City of Hamilton wanted to license landlords who owned properties with six rooms or less.

Hamilton landlords fought back! They were united and made a strong case about why licensing, which they called a ‘tenant tax’ was a bad policy option.

The government decided to move in another direction.

The hard work of Hamilton landlords paid off and good landlords and good tenants all over the city were rewarded for their courage and hard work!

What’s The Truth about Windsor Landlord Licensing?

The Ontario Landlords Association contacted the Windsor government to get some answers.

Mr. Michael Chantler, the Supervisor of Licencing & Deputy Licence Commissioner at the Office of the City Clerk for the City of Windsor was very helpful in replying to the questions on the minds of many Windsor landlords.

Mr. Chantler believes rumours of landlord licensing deal with the City of Windsor’s “Residential Rental Housing” report which is still in the developmental phase.

Here are some of the answers to the OLA’s questions:

1. Will Windsor License landlords in 2014?

The Licensing Department has not been given direction by Council to license landlords in 2014.

2. Is there any plan to license landlords in the future?

The Licensing Department has not been given direction to license landlords at any time in the future.

3. When will the report to City council be submitted and discussed regarding landlord fees, licenses, etc.?

There is a report being prepared regarding “Rental Housing” that is very complex and takes into account more than just a Licensing component. There are several different departments involved including, but not limited to, Fire, Planning, Licensing and Building. There is no firm date set for the report, but I believe it will probably go to Council in 2014.

4. Is there a way Windsor landlords can express their opinions to the government?

As with any major public issue, citizens can call 311, send a letter or call their Councillor/Mayor’s Office directly to provide their opinion.

However, you must keep in mind that the Members of Council don’t have a report before them to discuss at this time.

Some multiple property owners have already sent written submissions to Administration in Licensing.

If/when a report on this item does go forward: there will be opportunities for a delegation to appear at a City Council meeting.

Let’s Say NO to Landlord Licensing in Windsor and Other Cities in Ontario

Windsor landlords, like all landlords in Ontario are facing challenges from governments who don’t value the services small landlords provide and the important role we play in providing high quality, affordable housing to tenants all over the province.

Landlords need to be proactive in getting information about government plans and make our voice heard.

The Ontario Landlords Association and our thousands of members will continue to fight to make a difference in 2014.